Biochemist Career

Science and Research

 

Biochemist

Career Area: Science and Research

Occupation Group: Biological Science

Salary

Percentile wages tell how much a certain percentage of an overall population in a geographic area or within a given industry or field makes. The percentile wage estimate is the value of a wage below which a certain percent of workers fall.

An example would be the 25th percentile, 25 percent of workers employed in that occupation earn less and 75 percent earn more than the estimated wage value. At the 75th percentile, 75 percent of workers employed in that occupation earn less and 25 percent earn more than the estimated wage value.

A typical Biochemist earns the following wages (national and state):

State

The average salary in North Carolina for those pursuing this career is $66,851

*The salaries depicted here are representative of the range of salaries posted in job listings over the past year. Living wage in North Carolina is $30,000.

National

The average salary in the United States for those pursuing this career is $65,864

*The salaries depicted here are representative of the range of salaries posted in job listings over the past year. Living wage in North Carolina is $30,000.

What Does a Professional in this Career Do?

Studies the chemical composition of cells and organisms and conducts research using advanced technologies. Studies the chemical interactions involved in biologic processes such as metabolism, reproduction, and growth, or the effect of drugs or hormones on cells, or conducts research to isolate, analyze or synthesize proteins, enzymes and other molecules.

Employment Trends

The job demand and job growth statistics shown here were derived from job posts over the past year. Expected job growth projections are extrapolated from year-over-year job post listing history.

Job demand and job growth is expected at the following rates:

Growth
North Carolina91+16.9%
Nationwide1504+11.4%

Skills

A professional in this position typically utilizes the following skills in the course of everyday work in this exciting and challenging field:

Baseline Skills

The following are baseline skills every Biochemist is expected to have in order to experience success in this field:

  • Research: Research comprises creative work undertaken on a systematic basis in order to increase the stock of knowledge, including knowledge of humans, culture and society, and the use of this stock of knowledge to devise new applications. It is used to establish or confirm facts, reaffirm the results of previous work, solve new or existing problems, support theorems, or develop new theories.
  • Communication Skills: The ability to convey information to another effectively and efficiently.
  • Teamwork / Collaboration: A Collaboration is a purposeful relationship in which all parties strategically choose to cooperate in order to achieve shared or overlapping objectives.
  • Writing: Writing is a medium of human communication that represents language and emotion with signs and symbols.
  • Problem Solving: Problem solving consists of using generic or ad hoc methods, in an orderly manner, for finding solutions to problems.

Specialized Skills

These skills are specific to working in this career:

  • Biochemistry: Biochemistry is the study of chemical processes within and relating to living organisms.
  • Toxicology: Toxicology is a discipline, overlapping with biology, chemistry, pharmacology, medicine, and nursing, that involves the study of the adverse effects of chemical substances on living organisms and the practice of diagnosing and treating exposures to toxins and toxicants.
  • Chemistry: Chemistry is a branch of physical science that studies the composition, structure, properties and change of matter.
  • Biology: Biology is the natural science that involves the study of life and living organisms, including their physical and chemical structure, function, development and evolution.
  • Experiments: An experiment is a procedure carried out to support, refute, or validate a hypothesis.

Distinguishing Skills

Any Biochemist that possesses the following skills will stand out against the competition:

  • Drug Discovery: In the fields of medicine, biotechnology and pharmacology, drug discovery is the process by which new candidate medications are discovered.
  • Assay Development: One of the first steps in drug development and toxicity testing is creating test systems (assays) on which to evaluate the effects of chemical compounds on cellular, molecular or biochemical processes of interest.
  • Biochemical and Cell-Based Assays: Working experience of Biochemical and Cell-Based Assays. Some assays may be similar to or have overlap with chemical analysis and titration. But generally, assays involve biological chemical processes within and relating to living organisms.
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA): The enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) (, ) is a test that uses antibodies and color change to identify a substance.
  • Protein Expression: Working experience of Protein Expression, which refers to the way in which proteins are synthesized, modified and regulated in living organisms. In protein research, the term can apply to either the object of study or the laboratory techniques required to manufacture proteins.

Salary Boosting Skills

A professional who wishes to excel in this career path may consider developing the following highly valued skills:

  • Fermentation: Working experience of Fermentation, which is a metabolic process that consumes sugar in the absence of oxygen.
  • Medicinal Chemistry: Medicinal chemistry and pharmaceutical chemistry are disciplines at the intersection of chemistry, especially synthetic organic chemistry, and pharmacology and various other biological specialties, where they are involved with design, chemical synthesis and development for market of pharmaceutical agents, or bio-active molecules (drugs).
  • Protein Characterization: Protein characterisation is a broad term which involves creating a profile or fingerprint of the protein molecules physical, chemical, and biological properties.
  • Drug Discovery: In the fields of medicine, biotechnology and pharmacology, drug discovery is the process by which new candidate medications are discovered.

Education

This career typically requires the following level of education. The numbers presented in the pie charts below were derived from actual job posts over the past year. Not all job postings list education requirements.

.
Education Level%
Bachelor's Degree31%
Master's Degree31%
Doctoral Degree0%

Experience

This position typically requires the following level of experience. The numbers presented in the pie charts below were derived from actual job posts over the past year. Not all job postings list experience requirements.

Experience Required%
0 to 2 years44%
3 to 5 years37%
6 to 8 years11%

Many of the programs offered through NC State are designed for working professionals who need additional credentials to enhance existing work experience.

Students who do not have the expected level of experience may wish to look into internship and employment opportunities.

Common Job Titles

It is possible to find work in this field in positions commonly listed as the following job titles:

  • Biochemist
  • Toxicologist
  • Formulation Scientist
  • Biochemistry
  • Senior Toxicologist

Similar Occupations

If you are interested in exploring similar occupations, you may want to research the following job titles:

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