Biochemists and Biophysicists


Salary Median (2020)


Projected Job Growth (2019-2029)

+4% (slower than the average)

Most Common Level of Education

Doctoral or professional degree


What Biochemists and Biophysicists Do

Study the chemical composition or physical principles of living cells and organisms, their electrical and mechanical energy, and related phenomena. May conduct research to further understanding of the complex chemical combinations and reactions involved in metabolism, reproduction, growth, and heredity. May determine the effects of foods, drugs, serums, hormones, and other substances on tissues and vital processes of living organisms.

Other Job Titles Biochemists and Biophysicists May Have

Analytical Research Chemist, Biochemist, Biophysics Researcher, Scientist

How Leaders Describe a Typical Day at Work

Ph.D. Chemistry & Producer ,

The Big Electron Podcast

The best part about my job is that I never have a same day, it's always challenging coming up with new ideas. My main tasks are to do experiments trying to see what causes DNA damage and how to observe it. Granted I have to run many controls and side experiments to make sure that I'm actually observing what I think I have. So I have to prove myself and other scientists that my work is worth it!

Biochemistry Research Associate ,

Case Western Reserve University

I take advantage of the cell's natural ability to make and package proteins by modifying cells to make high quantities of proteins that could be candidates for cancer therapies. I then release these proteins by breaking up the cells and use different solutions to purify only the proteins I am interested in, ignoring all the anything that the cells would normally make. I then test out these target proteins with different cancer drugs or even other proteins to see what works best.

Tasks & Responsibilities May Include

  • Share research findings by writing scientific articles or by making presentations at scientific conferences.
  • Teach or advise undergraduate or graduate students or supervise their research.
  • Study physical principles of living cells or organisms and their electrical or mechanical energy, applying methods and knowledge of mathematics, physics, chemistry, or biology.
  • Manage laboratory teams or monitor the quality of a team's work.
  • Develop new methods to study the mechanisms of biological processes.

This page includes information from theO*NET 26.1 Databaseby the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (USDOL/ETA). Used under theCC BY 4.0license. O*NET® is a trademark of USDOL/ETA.