Menu Chai Logo

Assay Development Scientist


Do you want to build something that's impacting large industries like agriculture, research/education, and security, while at the same time combats consumer fraud, protects the environment, improves global health, and makes small businesses like microbrewers more profitable? 
Chai brings biotechnology into the real world. Our solution is as accurate as a lab test, costs 10x less, is easy enough for anyone to use, and provides on-site results in as little as 30 minutes.
We're seeking a versatile Assay Development Scientist with excellent skills in qPCR fundamentals & Real-Time PCR assay development. This scientist will develop reagent & test kit products, as well as play a core role in the development of our qPCR and future instrument projects.

What you'll be doing

  • Drive end-to-end development of AOAC tested, highly sensitive, inhibition resistant, rapid enrichment-free assays to detect food pathogens
  • You’ll provide scientific leadership within a diverse R&D team of scientists, hardware, and software engineers
  • You’ll mentor research associates to develop their skills in experimental design
  • You’ll design and optimize sample preparation processes for swabs, sponges, food & beverage samples
  • You’ll research literature and utilize bioinformatics tools to design qPCR and RT-qPCR assays
  • You’ll make shelf-stable test kits utilizing lyophilization and other techniques
  • You’ll oversee the transfer of assays into production by creating SOPs, QC procedures, and providing technical training to sales, marketing, and support
  • You’ll provide scientific input to product management 

We’d love to hear from you if

  • You possess a deep understanding of qPCR, RT-qPCR, and PCR reaction dynamics
  • You proudly take ownership of each aspect of the project from R&D through production, QC, and long term stability testing
  • You’re a pro at planning, selecting, designing, communicating, and executing research strategies and can guide other researchers to do the same
  • You can explain your work clearly to product managers, engineers, and designers who don’t speak fluent “biology”
  • You’re resourceful and don’t mind getting your hands dirty by performing bench work to test, debug, validate, and optimize an assay
  • You know or seek to understand regulatory and compliance standards
  • You’re flexible to adapt to the changing needs of a growing startup
  • You have a PhD in Molecular Biology, Biochemistry, or similar field with 3+ years of industry experience

What we offer

  • Competitive salary and meaningful stock options
  • Health/Dental/Vision insurance
  • 401(k) & FSA plans
  • Paid Holidays + PTO
  • Fully stocked kitchen + catered lunch on Wednesdays
  • On-site shower
  • 4K display, height adjustable desk, and whatever else you need    


At Chai everyone works with a great deal of freedom and responsibility. Expectations are high as people are trusted to act independently. We share information openly, think from first principles, and have a candid, trusting, and respectful culture. We offer you many challenges, an environment where you can achieve great things professionally, and a front row seat as we disrupt the biotech industry.

We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status.