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Lewis & Clark AgriFood
Lewis & Clark AgriFood

Head of Downstream Processing



Seattle, WA, USA
Posted on Tuesday, August 1, 2023

Located in Seattle, Washington, Arzeda is solving some of today’s hardest and most meaningful problems – from food and nutrition to sustainable materials and homecare – by designing proteins that have the limitless potential to change everyone’s daily life. Our Intelligent Protein Design Technology™ merges computational protein design, machine learning, and synthetic biology tools to produce proteins, enzymes, and bio-based processes more efficiently than even Mother Nature. A deep tech, mission-driven company, we are passionate about our mission to design novel proteins and products that enhance our lives and protect our planet. At Arzeda, we value a strong desire to learn, innovate and be continuously challenged.

We are seeking a Head of Downstream Process Development to lead a team of engineers in designing, developing, and deploying separation and purification processes for various products from fermentation and biocatalysis. In this role, you'll play a crucial role in leading and managing the process development journey, from R&D to commercialization. Your expertise will be essential as you collaborate with multiple disciplines, incorporating their valuable insights into the process. You'll have the opportunity to interact proactively with our dynamic program teams, harnessing the combined power of biology and engineering to efficiently solve problems. Working closely with our strain engineering and fermentation process development groups, development collaborators, and operations team, you'll pave the way for commercial manufacturing processes. Your efforts will be instrumental in implementing these processes with our esteemed production partners. If you're someone who thrives in a fast-paced, collaborative startup environment, we invite you to be part of our highly motivated team. Join us as we create innovative solutions and make a lasting impact on the world!


The Head of Downstream Process Development will lead the team both technically and strategically, and to foster an environment in which team members can grow and develop.

  • Manage the Downstream Process (DSP) Development team in the development of scalable, robust, and cost-effective purification processes across a variety of industries, including industrial biotech, food & feed ingredients
  • In collaboration with the Head of Engineering, provide strategic leadership for Downstream Process Development & Engineering within the organization, driving the expansion of internal and external capabilities as needed
  • Collaborate across Arzeda’s technical, project management, and commercial teams to accelerate process development timelines, ensuring the team has the necessary resources to complete projects
  • Interface with customer and contract manufacturing sites, including travel as required
  • In collaboration with the Head of Engineering, set and execute the strategic direction for process development
  • Work with partners to troubleshoot and improve processes through novel and creative scientific approaches
  • Actively participate in the fermentation development process to enhance robustness, performance, and cost-effectiveness by suggesting and implementing (downstream? Or enzyme recovery?) process improvements
  • Manage technical relationships with production partners
  • Lead internal and external technology transfer projects, overseeing the timely implementation of Arzeda DSP processes at our production partners


  • BS in chemical engineering, or a similar field with 10 years of downstream process development experience in industrial biotech; MS with 5 years or PhD with 3+ years of DSP experience in industrial biotech
  • Experience and demonstrated success in managing a team of engineers toward successful development, scale-up, and deployment of production and purification processes of industrial enzymes and/or biocatalysis processes
  • Experience developing downstream processes for both proteins/enzymes and small molecules
  • Expertise in a variety of downstream unit operations
  • Experience working with the resulting products (enzymes/proteins and small molecules) of fermentation and biocatalysis processes
  • Understanding of the connection between enzyme characteristics and process performance
  • Robust data analysis and statistical skills
  • Outstanding team player with strong interpersonal and communication skills
  • Capable of high-performance work both independently and collaboratively
  • Meticulous attention to detail and adherence to good laboratory practices
  • Proactive in adopting new technologies and techniques for process improvements
  • Skilled at identifying technical problems and proposing effective solutions
  • Collaborative and receptive to input from individuals across various disciplines and levels
  • Anticipated travel: 10-20% with peak periods during tech transfer and launch

Nice-to-haves (but not required):

  • DSP expertise with food ingredients; understanding of the pathway for regulatory approval involved with producing food products
  • Interest in building machines/equipment, and/or adapting existing equipment to innovative processes that the team develops

**Director or Sr. Director: Title and compensation will be based on level of experience with requested qualifications**

Arzeda compensation and benefits include:

  • Comprehensive compensation package, to include equity
  • Base Salary: $150,000 - 200,000 (may vary based on level of experience, education and geography)
  • Paid time off; company-observed holidays to include a company paid holiday closure between Dec 25 and Jan 1; and paid medical/family leave
  • Excellent medical, dental, and vision insurance to include options for Health Savings Accounts
  • 401(k) retirement savings plan
  • Commuter benefits

Arzeda is an equal opportunity employer promoting diversity and inclusion in the workspace. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, marital status, age, national origin, ancestry, physical or mental disability, medical conditions, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender (including gender identity and gender expression), sex (which includes pregnancy, childbirth, and breastfeeding), genetic information, taking or requesting statutorily protected leave, or any other basis protected by law.

Legal authorization to work in the United States is required. In compliance with federal law, all persons hired will be required to verify identity and eligibility to work in the United States and to complete the required employment eligibility verification form upon hire.