Research Associate II: Assay Development


About Debut

Debut is the unconventional innovation lab spearheading the next generation of big business. Only Debut has a scalable, integrated, climate-positive creation model powered by biotechnology that puts human wellbeing at the center of everything we do—setting the new standard for profitable business and a new pace for an ever-changing world.  Our hybrid biotechnology approaches unlock latent markets, providing access to sustainably produced, natural ingredients with health benefits that cannot be obtained through other methods. We are committed to traversing the entire process, from ingredient discovery to the scaling of these products, for consumer markets. If you are passionate, enjoy fast-paced innovation and collaborative teams, then Debut is for you.  


Debut is growing its Small Scale Assay team to aid in the in vivo testing of small molecules. As a research associate in assay development you will develop, optimize, and execute novel enzymatic and cell-based assays in high-throughput screens using conventional approaches and robotics. You will also design and execute lab-based experiments, generate, and interpret data supporting the successful development of new assays and tests. As part of your day-to-day you will learn, apply, and incorporate automation solutions during assay development, execution, troubleshooting, data analysis, and reporting while investigating and identifying new methods and technologies to generate reliable and reproducible data. You will also be responsible for planning and executing experiments, adapt readily to changing project needs and develop sophisticated problem-identification and problem-solving skills. 

 Essential Functions 

  • Established capability to design, conduct, optimize and execute on novel biochemical and cell-based assay development efforts in the lab supporting HTS and project deliverables 
  • Strong scientific foundation in the understanding and implementation of a wide range of biochemical and cell-based assay readouts for small molecule production such as HPLC, LCMS, GCMS, fluorescence Polarization, Luminescence & Fluorescence-based reporters 
  • HTP screening of target molecules in microtiter based assays 
  • Cell culture, media development, and cell-based assay development 
  • Design, plan, execute, and record critical experiments in LIMS 
  • Able to follow and write SOP’s to increase workflow 
  • Ability to create and establish priorities, manage work plans, and meet timelines. 
  • Multitasking, organization, detail oriented, and positive attitude is required 
  • Must be detail-oriented and possess strong analytical skills 
  • Must be willing to work non-standard hours supporting a 24/7 operation including weekends 

 Education and Experience 

  • Bachelors Degree + 2 years of experience; OR Associates Degree +  4 years of experience; OR  HS Diploma/GED + 6 years of experience in biology, biochemistry, bioengineering, pharmacology, enzymology, or equivalent  
  • Broad experience and expertise in molecular reagent & cell line handling in aseptic environments 
  • Experience with microbial fermentation at the plate and bench scale 
  • Familiarity with setting-up and operation of microplate readers and automated liquid handlers in the development of 384- and/or 1536-well microtiter plate assays is desirable 
  • Experience in computational analysis of biological data and large data sets using general-purpose programming language (such as Python, R, or Matlab) is desirable 
  • Familiarity with software and statistical platforms for the analysis of large data sets (e.g., JMP, Tableau, Spotfire, or MODDE pro/DoE) is desirable 
  • Demonstrated initiative, teamwork, collaboration, and passion for developing technical expertise across assay development to routine execution 

 Essential Physical Characteristics 

The physical characteristics described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this position. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable qualified individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions of a job, on a case-by-case basis. 

  • Continuous upward and downward flexion of the neck.  
  • Frequent: sitting, repetitive use of hands to operate computers, printers and copiers.  
  • Frequently uses hands to feel objects or control tools (e.g. pipetting).  Laboratory operations require dexterity and care to perform studies as required. 
  • Occasional: walking, standing, climbing stairs, bending and twisting of neck, bending and twisting of waist, squatting, simple grasping, reaching above and below shoulder level, and occasional lifting and carrying of files or material weighing up to 50 pounds. 
  • Must be willing to work with biohazardous agents (up to BSL2) and chemicals. 
  • The R&D laboratory will result in exposure to hot and cold temperatures, noise, fumes, limited dust, and oily coolants. 
  • The performance of this position will present exposure to an industrial environment and requires support and compliance with the published Company PPE policy including but not limited to the use of personal protective equipment such as safety glasses with side shields, appropriate attire, safety shoes, hard hat, hearing protection, etc. 

Condition of Employment 

As part of Debut’s pre-employment process, prospective candidates will undergo a background check prior to beginning employment. Additional types of background investigations may be conducted based on the job-related activities of the position. 

Debut is an equal opportunity employer. All applicants will be considered for employment without attention to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, veteran, or disability status. 


Salary: $70,000 - $85,000 

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