Research Associate, Biology

San Francisco, California, US
Aug 02, 2021
Aug 11, 2021
Employment Type
Full time
Salary Type
Brightseed enables a healthier future by illuminating and activating the connections between plants and people. Despite centuries of wisdom proving the critical roles plants play in supporting our health, the majority of small molecules in the plant kingdom remain unexplored. Using computational biology and machine learning, Brightseed's ForagerĀ® is the first and only artificial intelligence designed to uncover how plant small molecules impact human biology. Forager's discoveries support major areas of human health, including metabolism, digestion, cognition, and immunity. Discoveries undergo clinical evaluation, regulatory review, and commercial development to deliver powerful, yet natural solutions.


We are committed to making transformative discoveries with a team-first mentality. Successful team members are truth-seeking and trusting, with the tenacity required to trail blaze in uncharted territory. We are a collaborative team that actively seeks input and values differing perspectives. And we produce tangible results, holding ourselves accountable in the process.

We are also committed to cultivating and preserving a culture of connectedness and inclusion. We grow and learn together, respecting professional and personal experiences, areas of expertise, and types of self expression.

In recruiting for our team, we welcome the unique contributions that each one of us brings in terms of education, opinions, culture, color, ethnicity, race, sex, gender identity and expression, nation of origin, age, languages spoken, veteran's status, religion, different abilities, sexual orientation and beliefs.


You are a detail-oriented bench scientist eager to work with an energetic, multidisciplinary team to explore the chemical diversity encoded in organismal genomes and how that diversity can be harnessed for the betterment of human health.

At Brightseed, you will be part of the team who is responsible for building out an innovative biological investigation capability to uncover the health benefits of natural molecules isolated from major domains of life including plants, fungi, and microbes. As part of your work, you will help facilitate high-throughput screening in collaboration with our computation and chemistry teams. Ultimately, your work will result in the human health knowledge base as a crucial part of our ForagerĀ® platform and a portfolio of novel discoveries. This role will report to our Biological Sciences team and is based in South San Francisco.
  • Prepare, maintain and manage appropriate cell lines, biological tools, reagents, and other experimental resources supporting active biological investigations.
  • Perform assays representing bioactivities of interest, including phenotypic, target-based, biomarker, and other functional assays.
  • Team with in-house natural product chemists and computational biologists to perform bioactivity-guided screening of natural plant compounds.
  • Execute in vitro experiments to characterize the biological activity of natural plant compounds and their application in addressing specific chronic disease conditions.
  • Contribute to investigations to deliver mechanistic insights into the activity of lead compounds, implementing a range of molecular biology and biochemical techniques for nucleic acid, protein, and cell-based analyses.
  • Maintain laboratory infrastructure to support research efforts, including identifying, commissioning, and maintaining critical lab equipment.
During the first year at Brightseed, we would expect you to:
  • Join the discovery team in launching an initiative to identify natural plant compounds that address the company's next major area of focus.
  • Support fundamental bench-based biological investigations.
  • Implement assays and biological tools to screen and validate lead compounds for targeted bioactivities.
  • BS in cell and molecular biology, neuroscience, biochemistry, or related field.
  • 1+ yr experience in academic/industrial research lab setting.
  • Experience in cell culture techniques, maintaining and managing multiple cell lines.
  • Expertise in common nucleic acid, protein, and cell-based techniques, including DNA/RNA isolation and amplification, protein purification, gel-based analyses, plasmid design, cloning and transfection, and cell culture.
  • Experience with fluorescent, chemiluminescent, and bioluminescent labeling and detection approaches, microscopy, and cell-based imaging and analysis preferred.
  • Experience investigating human health processes is a definite plus.
  • Excellent computer and quantitative skills, including scientific record-keeping and technical document management.
  • Ability to effectively communicate complex concepts, data, and interpretations to a wide range of audiences.