MOLECULAR BIOLOGIST – University of Washington – Seattle, WA

University of Washington
579 reviews

Seattle, WA
The University of Washington (UW) is proud to be one of the nation’s premier educational and research institutions. Our people are the most important asset in our pursuit of achieving excellence in education, research, and community service. Our staff not only enjoys outstanding benefits and professional growth opportunities, but also an environment noted for diversity, community involvement, intellectual excitement, artistic pursuits, and natural beauty.

The Department of Electrical Engineering at the University of Washington is a nationally ranked education and research program. Located on the main Seattle campus of the University of Washington, UW Electrical Engineering currently supports greater than 750 undergraduate and graduate students and over 50 active research faculty. EE’s annual expenditures reach approximately $19 million and its external funding is close to $25 million. The Department has several key areas of research: communications/networking, electromagnetics/remote sensing, big data, integrated systems/circuits/VLSI, nanotech and photonics, power and energy, speech/image/video processing and systems/controls and robotics. Supporting over 470 undergraduate, 300 graduate and 100 professional students in their educational efforts, the Department has proven to be a leader in both education and research areas, as well as effectively leveraging intellectual and entrepreneurial engagement at all stages of research.

The UW BIOFAB ( is a semi-automated, human in the loop, molecular biology lab in the cloud service. The BIOFAB is controlled by the Aquarium software (, which was designed in-house to control every aspect of the lab. The BIOFAB allows users to design experimental workflows, which technicians execute. Users can attach upstream design tools, and send data to downstream analysis software. The key innovation in our approach is our use of people to perform many of the steps in the workflows, making the system flexible and reconfigurable. The Aquarium software compiles experimental workflows into very specific steps presented at touch screen monitors throughout the lab, instructing technicians to retrieve samples, perform various operations on them, place them in instruments to produce data, and so on. Presently, the BIOFAB system includes an extensive workflow language, a backchaining workflow generator, an API for 3rd party upstream design algorithms, and an API for downstream data access. We currently run hundreds of experiments a week for about ten research labs at UW, the Hutch, and Caltech as well as several industry partners in Seattle and the Bay Area.

We have an outstanding opportunity for a Molecular Biologist to work with our programming team to develop precise, executable workflows for protocols involved in protein engineering, including but not limited to cloning, yeast surface display, next generation sequencing, FACS, protein purification, HPLC/FPLC, cyclic dichroism, and preparation of crystals. The workflows will be prototyped by the molecular biologist, encoded in the Aquarium Workflow language, and executed at production levels by technicians. In addition, the molecular biologist will use the workflows to develop standard plasmids, libraries, proteins, and strains used in controls, to characterize the Aquarium workflows, and for comparisons to workflows performed by third parties. The molecular biologist will work with a highly interdisciplinary team of about 20 engineers, biologists, and lab technicians who are building the world’s first modular, cloud-based, programmable laboratory.


  • Master’s degree or higher in molecular biology, biochemistry, or similar field
  • Minimum 1-3 years’ experience
  • Has worked extensively with yeast
  • Experience with several of the following areas: cloning, yeast surface display, FACS, NGS, and/or HPLC/FPLC
  • Has extensive experience with Benchling, Genius, or similar software
  • Demonstrably works well in a team
  • Willing to learn new skills


  • Has worked with laboratory information system (LIMS)
  • Experience with the Rosetta protein design software
  • Computer Programming experience in Python and/or Ruby


    Appointment to this position is contingent upon obtaining satisfactory results from a criminal background check

    Application Process:

    The application process for UW positions may include completion of a variety of online assessments to obtain additional information that will be used in the evaluation process. These assessments may include Work Authorization, Criminal Conviction History, Cover Letter and/or others. Any assessments that you need to complete will appear on your screen as soon as you select “Apply to this position”. Once you begin an assessment, it must be completed at that time; if you do not complete the assessment you will be prompted to do so the next time you access your “My Jobs” page. If you select to take it later, it will appear on your “My Jobs” page to take when you are ready. Please note that your application will not be reviewed, and you will not be considered for this position until all required assessments have been completed.

    The University of Washington is a leader in environmental stewardship & sustainability , and committed to becoming climate neutral.

    The University of Washington is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer.
    To request disability accommodation in the application process, contact the Disability Services Office at 206-543-6450 / 206-543-6452 (tty) or [email protected] .

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