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Contact: McMullin, Hugh (

Upstream Process Development Scientist

Upstream Process Development Scientist

At Codexis, we are creating sustainable chemicals, pharmaceutical processes, and renewable ingredients that make industry more efficient, productive and profitable. Industrial biotechnology from Codexis reengineers enzymes and microorganisms – nature’s catalysts – and puts them to work to solve real global challenges for the world’s largest companies.

Position Description:  

The Upstream Process Development Scientist will be responsible for the development of recombinant protein production processes and to successfully oversee the transfer of these processes to contract manufacturers. The ideal candidate will have experience with the optimization of enzyme production in microbial expression systems. This position offers the opportunity to work in a multidisciplinary team in a challenging and dynamic environment.


The Process Development Scientist will be responsible for:

  • Development of fermentation and downstream recovery processes for recombinant proteins including enzymes expressed in microbial hosts.
  • Development of fermentation processes using scale down models to predict process performance at manufacturing scale.
  • Development of unit operations at the bench and pilot-scale (10-500L) such as, centrifugation homogenization, micro filtration, ultra filtration and depth filtration.
  • Leading process development, optimization, characterization, scale-up and tech transfer to contract manufacturing.
  • Providing troubleshooting support to commercial manufacturing operations.
  • Participating in strain, process, and cost efficiency improvement efforts.
  • Must be able to lead multidisciplinary team, design project experiments and overall direction, and be able to communicate results and challenges to key stakeholders.
  • Demonstrated supervisory experience.
  • Meeting timelines for multiple projects that may be at different stages of development.
  • Identifying and evaluating new technologies for fermentation and recovery processes.
  • Authoring equipment and process SOPs and Process Safety Reviews.

Critical Competencies:

  • Strong knowledge of microbial systems, physiology and cellular metabolism, coupled with practical knowledge of process engineering and plant operations
  • Strong technical background and direct hands-on experience with fermentation processes and downstream processing unit operations such as , centrifugation, homogenization, ultra filtration, sterile filtration, lyophilization etc.
  • Sound understanding of basic protein biochemistry, microbiology, and recombinant protein expression in microbial hosts.
  • Experience in enzyme activity, protein characterization, and protein determination.
  • Experimental design and data analysis capabilities including Design of Experiments (DOE).
  • Understanding of engineering issues involved in scale up and possesses both practical and analytical skills to implement relevant scale down models.
  • Experience with lyophilization is a plus.
  • Ability to prioritize responsibilities, multi-task and remain flexible with changing needs.
  • Must be motivated and able to work under tight deadlines.
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication (oral and written) skills, documentation, organization, good record keeping, writing reports and SOPs.
  • Able to work effectively in cross functional teams to solve manufacturing problems or implement improved procedures.
  • Mentor and supervise staff as well as work effectively with management teams. 
  • Some travel to  manufacturing sites will be required


Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering, Microbiology, Microbial Physiology, or related discipline with 3-5 years of relevant industrial experience; or B.S. with at least 10 years relevant industrial experience.

The position comes with a competitive compensation and benefits package, including paid company holidays, paid time off, health benefits, 401k match, and much more.  For more information about our plans for the future, and to be considered for this career opportunity, please visit