Sr. Scientist I, RNA Purification & Characterization

Ginkgo Bioworks



Boston, MA


Position summary

Our mission is to make biology easier to engineer. Ginkgo is constructing, editing, and redesigning the living world in order to answer the globe’s growing challenges in health, energy, food, materials, and more. Our bioengineers make use of an in-house automated foundry for designing and building new organisms. 

Team Introduction

The Biomolecule Purification and Characterization (BPC) team is composed of experienced protein and nucleic acid scientists and biochemists. We develop purification and characterization methods for a wide range of modalities (https://e.g. recombinant proteins, enzymes, AAVs, VLPs, RNA), from several different expression hosts (microbial, mammalian, fungal, etc.), to support cell engineering programs at Ginkgo. Our team operates at the intersection of protein and nucleic acid engineering, high-throughput screening, fermentation, and downstream processing to help purify and assess biomolecules that are central to the mission at Ginkgo. We utilize the latest software and automation to develop low, mid, and high throughput methods for protein and nucleic acid purification, enzyme kinetics and biophysical characterization.

Job Description

We are looking for a highly skilled and motivated https://Sr.Scientist with expertise in RNA biology - specifically RNA purification and characterization. Your role at Ginkgo will require you to work collaboratively with scientists across different teams focused on designing, screening and purifying RNA constructs for therapeutic and non-therapeutic purposes. Your primary responsibility will be to develop methods for RNA purification (chromatography and non-chromatography based) and characterization of engineered RNA constructs (mRNA, circRNA, etc). Prior experience in large-scale RNA purification and production will be strongly favored. We also value prior experiences with in vitro or cell-based experiments for the purpose of engineering RNA with durable, tissue-specific expression. Additionally, you will also have the opportunity to work on the purification and characterization of other biomolecules such as proteins, enzymes, AAVs, VLPs, etc.

Specific Role Description

Your primary responsibility is to perform hands-on development of purification and characterization methods for nucleic acids such as mRNA and circRNA, with the ultimate goal of generating therapeutic grade material for in-vitro downstream assays and pre-clinical in-vivo studies.


  • Your primary responsibility is to perform hands-on development of purification and characterization methods for nucleic acids such as mRNA and circRNA, with the ultimate goal of generating therapeutic grade material for in-vitro downstream assays and in-vivo studies.
  • Work with liquid handlers such as the FPLC and HPLC systems to develop chromatography based purification methods
  • Executing in vitro assays in high throughput format to support process development activities (https://e.g. in-vitro transcription scale-up, biochemical characterization of RNA, gel electrophoresis, ELISA, etc.)
  • Author, review, and approve protocols, SOPs, technical documents, and reports for RNA production
  • Independently plan and execute experiments, perform data analysis and interpretation
  • Maintain thorough electronic lab notebooks (ELNs) and documentation records, and present findings to internal and external Ginkgo partners
  • Work with teams with diverse scientific backgrounds and varying biochemistry experience levels

Minimum Requirements

  • PhD with 2 years of experience or Master’s with 6 years of experience or equivalent. Educational training in Chemical Engineering, Bioengineering, Biological Sciences, Chemistry, or a related field. 

  • Strong knowledge of nucleic acid chemistry, nucleic acid structure-activity relationships; RNA biology, synthesis, purification and characterization. 

  • Expertise in in vitro transcription, characterization of RNA (gel electrophoresis, enzymatic reactions, chromatography, ELISA). Quantitative and statistical analysis of data

  • Demonstrated hands-on experience in small and large scale nucleic acid (RNA) purification methodologies including chromatography separation (anion exchange, hydrophobic interaction, mixed-mode) and buffer exchange methods. Familiar with AKTA FPLC system and HPLC systems.

  • Desire to work in a team-first, fast-paced environment, learn new technologies and skills, and to efficiently solve problems.

  • Enthusiasm to learn new techniques and strong curiosity of areas of biology previously unknown to you

Preferred Capabilities and Experience

  • Prior experience in nucleic acid synthesis, protein-nucleic acid interactions or nucleotide modifications
  • Understanding of molecular biology, recombinant protein expression and construct design for protein chromatography methods; familiarity with standard expression hosts such as mammalian, microbial, and yeast
  • Hands on experience in biochemistry techniques such as protein expression, gel electrophoresis, protein quantification assays, and enzyme kinetics
  • Interest in high-throughput methods for protein purification and characterization
  • Prior industry experience in RNA purification methods

To learn more about Ginkgo, visit or check out some curated press below:

We also feel that it’s important to point out the obvious here – there’s a serious lack of diversity in our industry, and that needs to change. Our goal is to help drive that change. Ginkgo is deeply committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion in all of its practices, especially when it comes to growing our team. Our culture promotes inclusion and embraces how rewarding it is to work with people from all walks of life.  

We’re developing a powerful biological engineering platform, so we must remain mindful of the many ways our technology can – and will – impact people around the world. We care about how our platform is used, and having a diverse team to build it gives us the best chance that it’s something we’ll be proud of as it continues to grow. Therefore, it’s critical that we incorporate the diverse voices and visions of all those who play a role in the future of biology.

It is the policy of Ginkgo Bioworks to provide equal employment opportunities to all employees, employment applicants, and EOE disability/vet. 

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Why you should apply for a job to Ginkgo Bioworks:

  • 5/5 in overall job satisfaction

  • 4.4/5 in supportive management

  • 100% say women are treated fairly and equally to men

  • 80% would recommend this company to other women

  • 88% say the CEO supports gender diversity

  • Ratings are based on anonymous reviews by Fairygodboss members.
  • 12 weeks paid parental leave to the primary caregiver, and 2 weeks paid for the secondary caregiver. Additional time may be arranged.

  • Partnership with AceUp coaching for leadership and supervisory skill building, and they take on a new cohort of managers every 6 months.

  • Child care subsidies and eldercare services.