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Biochemist

Biochemists investigate the chemical processes that take place inside all living things, from viruses and bacteria to people.

Potential salary

£26,500 to £60,000

Employment by 2024

+2.64%

Working hours

38 to 40 a week

  • maths knowledge
  • knowledge of biology
  • knowledge of chemistry including the safe use and disposal of chemicals
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • science skills
  • knowledge of physics
  • concentration skills
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • analytical thinking skills
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

Your tasks will vary by industry

In the pharmaceutical, food or brewing industries, your work will include:

  • developing new products
  • monitoring production
  • quality control
  • checking the safety of existing products

In a hospital, public health laboratory or research institute, your work will include:

  • carrying out tests on blood
  • researching the causes of disease
  • exploring new methods of treatment

In agriculture and the environment, your work will include:

  • genetically engineering plants to create pest-resistant crops
  • improving the quantity of crops
  • developing and extending the shelf life of produce
  • monitoring the effects of pollution on the environment

As a biochemist in education, you could work in universities or colleges, or medical, veterinary or dental schools.

You may need to wear protective clothing.

You could work at a research facility, in a laboratory or at a university.

With experience, you could become a team leader or manager, running a department, or move into research, sales and marketing, or scientific journalism.

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