Research Associate II at Benson Hill, Inc

Posted in General Business 26 days ago.

Type: Full-Time
Location: St. Louis, Missouri

Job Description:

Benson Hill empowers innovators to develop more healthy, tasty, and sustainable food by unlocking the natural genetic diversity of plants. Benson Hill's CropOS™ platform combines machine learning and big data with breeding techniques and plant biology to drastically accelerate and simplify the product development process. This platform allows for cost-effective and more efficient ways for companies to analyze and make improvements in plant genetics. Benson Hill brings a unique and holistic approach to our product and platform development, as we span a broader workflow involving trait and seed development, genome editing, and breeding all the way to creating better ingredients and varieties that tap a strong consumer demand for more flavorful and nutritious fruits and vegetables. More information can be found online Follow us on Twitter at@BensonHillInc.


Our Core Values are a set of common principles we share that are fundamental toour company's identity.

  • BE BOLD! We redefine boundaries by providing new solutions to difficult problems. Together we are driven to transform the future and will not allow the fear of failure to prevent us from innovating. We voice our opinions, embrace change, and challenge each other to think creatively.

  • BE INSPIRED!We have purpose in our work-we are curious, engaged, and have fun. We maintain an active learning mindset and are motivated by diverse people and thoughts. We are energized by all innovators and together we aim to make an impact and contribute to building a better world.

  • BE REAL!We understand who we are, what we want to achieve, and what it takes to get there. We hold each other accountable through timely, candid, and well-intentioned feedback. Together we engage in honest communication and healthy debate that leads to success through true alignment.


The Research and Development Department is responsible for the development of technology platforms and products designed to support the future growth, competitiveness, and long-term sustainability of the company. As part of its platform development efforts, R&D conducts a wide range of research activities, namely in the areas of trait discovery and validation, crop genetic engineering, crop transformation, molecular detection, biochemical assays, plant growth, and molecular breeding, to name a few. These activities are aimed at developing new capabilities in crop research, the outcome of which is then leveraged to create new product development opportunities and shorten the time to market. The department leverages its platform capabilities and extensive knowhow in biology and crop science, along with the computational expertise housed within the Data Science & Platform Engineering, as well as the market insights of the Business Development and Commercial teams to design and create new and improved crop varieties, which offer tangible benefits to farmers and consumers, specifically in the areas of sustainability, health, and nutrition.


The Vector Technologies Team is seeking a Research Associate II who will be responsible for generating constructs that feed into Benson Hill's biotechnology and genome editing pipelines. The Research Associate will conduct activities related to vector technology like virtual construct design, construct assembly, construct verification, DNA generation, sequence analysis and guide design. The candidate, while being a key member of Benson Hill's Vector Technologies team will work in a fast-paced and collaborative atmosphere, interacting closely with an interdisciplinary team. The position is based in St. Louis, MO.



  • Perform plasmid vector design using various software platforms like Snapgene, CLCbio etc.

  • Familiarity with traditional and novel cloning regimens

  • Multi-task across multiple cloning workflows and communicate cross-functionally

  • Have experience with genomic DNA isolation, gene identification, amplification, and cloning

  • Design guides for various genome editing experiments

  • Independently execute various cloning projects, DNA preps and sequence analysis

  • Analyze and troubleshoot results while clearly communicating results and research progress to supervisors and relevant stakeholders

  • Maintain detailed and organized records of project data and other materials as needed

  • Contribute to scientific discussions and present outcomes to colleagues



  • Experience in a fast-paced industrial agricultural biotechnology setting

  • Familiarity with T-DNA construct design for Agrobacterium-mediated transformation

  • Knowledge of standard and novel plasmid construction methodologies for plant biotechnology constructs

  • Familiarity with basic bioinformatics tools for sequence analysis

  • Strong verbal and written communication skills

  • Ability to work autonomously or collaboratively as part of a team

  • Planning, prioritizing, troubleshooting and problem-solving skills


  • HS diploma + 4 years in desired area or B.S. or more advanced degree in Bioengineering, Biology, Biochemistry, Biotechnology or related discipline

  • Position level will be determined by experience in desired areas


  • Attention to detail

  • Collaborative

  • Ability to focus and work independently

  • Adapt to changing priorities and timelines

  • Rapidly acquire new technical skills

  • Organized, capable of working on several projects concurrently

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