Research Associate: Tissue Engineering

Number of employees


San Francisco, CA, United States

Posted on: 2023-12-05

Category: food

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Employment type:

Full time

Experience required:



Salary not provided

About the company:

Wildtype isn’t plant-based, farmed-raised, or wild-caught. We're making  cultivated seafood, starting with sushi-grade salmon. 

About Wildtype

Wildtype is on a mission to create the cleanest, most sustainable seafood on the planet, starting with sushi-grade salmon. We’re pioneering cellular agriculture to protect wild species and our oceans, and to reverse trends of global food insecurity. Wildtype will provide consumers with a new option for real seafood that provides the same nutritional benefits as the most pristine wild-caught fish, without common contaminants such as mercury, microplastics, antibiotics, or pesticides.

We were founded in 2016 by Aryé Elfenbein, a cardiologist and molecular biologist, and Justin Kolbeck (CEO), a former US diplomat who served in Pakistan and Afghanistan, in an effort to solve one of the world’s biggest problems: how to feed a growing population without stripping the earth of its natural resources and biodiversity. Investors include L Catterton, Jeff Bezos, Spark Capital, CRV, Temasek, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Robert Downey Jr.’s Footprint Coalition, among others. 

Come join us in transforming our food system for good!

What you will own at Wildtype

  • Create and develop our current protein- and carbohydrate- based scaffolds with novel cell adhesion, proliferation, and differentiation cues  
  • Tissue engineer muscle, fat, and connective tissue, including cell seeding, scaffold stimulation, and harvest to packaging
  • Analyze experimental samples by brightfield and confocal microscopy, fluorescence-based immunoassays, colorimetric assays, histology, and mechanical assays
  • Carry out experiments with the guidance of our scientific leadership, maintain organized and accurate notes, present data, be engaged in scaffold rational redesign and experimental planning
  • Acquire new skills and integrate new technologies

What we’ll teach you

  • How to apply your tissue engineering skills in the context of next-generation sustainable food production
  • Scale up basic tissue engineering techniques to unprecedented volumes
  • How to continue growing as a scientist with outside-the-box thinking, creative experimental design, execution, and analysis
  • New techniques such as hybrid scaffold fabrication, functional assays, advanced microscopy, molecular biology, and screening methodologies

What you bring to Wildtype

  • BS or MS in Biochemistry, Chemistry, Biology, Polymer/Materials Science, Chemical Engineering, Bioengineering, or a related field, with strong research and laboratory experience
  • 2+ years of mammalian cell culture experience
  • Exceptional aseptic technique with an understanding of the fundamentals of cell culture in 3D scaffolds
  • Experience preparing analytical reagents and dilutions
  • Experience with molecular biology and biopolymer-based hydrogels is a plus
  • Comfortable taking notes, writing reports, and performing laboratory-related arithmetic
  • Capable of overcoming obstacles/difficulties with a positive attitude; enjoys challenges; proven ability to see goals through to the end
  • A hunger for learning, growth, and being part of a fast-moving, dynamic team
  • Strong attention to detail and excellent organizational skills
  • Able to learn quickly and excel in a fast-paced work environment
  • Self-starter, willing to take initiative to accomplish key tasks

Impact Plan

  • Within 1 month you’ll have carried out your first experiment on your own, with the support of your scientific mentor. We’ll rely on you to culture cells and prepare scaffolds and other experimental reagents without supervision. You will have performed a few advanced analyses (such as confocal microscopy or mechanical characterization) on the samples you have produced. You will have defined your professional development goals for the next twelve months.
  • Within 3 months you will have mastered basic tissue engineering lab techniques within Wildtype’s unique context. You will independently carry out multiple routine activities such as cell culture, cell seeding, differentiation, and sample analyses without supervision. You will have contributed to the design of several experiments.
  • Within 6 months your tissue engineering skills will have developed to the point where you can independently train a new hire on Wildtype’s entire production process. Your work will be organized, effective, timely, and at a high level of quality.  You will have executed your first independently designed experiment and presented your findings at a company-wide research meeting.   
  • Within 12 months you’ll be managing and carrying out multiple experiments simultaneously. You will be helping other crewmates in their efforts as well. You will be able to articulate how your work directly impacts the company’s milestones. You will routinely take the initiative to research topics independently and volunteer new ideas or approaches.
Compensation range is listed below, in addition we offer 90th percentile equity.

Location: This position is an onsite role based in San Francisco.
Compensation (per year)
$70,000$92,000 USD


To learn more about Wildtype and see our newest updates, check out our blog! 

Wildtype is committed to building a diverse workplace spanning multiple dimensions including race, color, ancestry, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, age, marital status, disability, gender identity, and veteran status.

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