Molecular Biologist

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Molecular biology focuses on the molecular basis of organisms - primarily this means researching the interactions between cell systems; for example, the genetic information encoding properties of DNA. Study in this area in often carried out from a medical perspective, determining methods of disease diagnosis and treatment, though molecular biologists may also work in agricultural and environmental contexts.

Molecular biologists utilise a variety of sophisticated laboratory equipment, computer programs and microscopic instruments in their work and may typically:

  • Conduct research on the structure and function of micro-organisms
  • Complete tests on substances for the presence of particular micro-organisms
  • Conduct studies and experiments on human and animal DNA
  • Identify micro-organisms which can break down pollutants and treat disease

Molecular biologists find employment with hospitals, universities, the pharmaceutical industry, food and beverage companies, diagnostic laboratories, biotechnology organisations and environmental consultancy agencies. A bachelor degree is the minimum in this profession where knowledge of genetics is beneficial. Many molecular biologists undertake post-graduate specialisation in their chosen area.