As a Fermentation Scientist here at Genesis, Zaker Khan analyzes vital fermentation parameters at Critical Control Points to keep our fermentation processes operating to optimal safety and efficiency levels. Zaker’s analytical attention to detail ensures full traceability and quality compliance at all times.
With a background in metabolic engineering and biotechnology research, Zaker – our Fermentation Scientist – is an essential part of powering fermentation capabilities in our US facility.
Zaker is a determined problem solver with success in aligning our fermentation and technical visions in order to initiate, implement and improve fermentation processes. With strengths in Engineering, Biochemistry and Food Science, his focus on equipment sterilization and critical control points allows Genesis Biosciences to produce pure Bacillus spores with each fermentation run.
Some people probably wouldn’t know what your role involves – how would you explain it?
My role at Genesis Biosciences is to produce spray dried Bacillus powder that is used in the fermentation process of various customers to ultimately create probiotics.
My goal as a Fermentation Scientist is to perform upstream and downstream processing of various Bacillus strains while bringing creativity and innovation into the company through the implementation of new protocols that value initiative, integrity and leadership.
What was it about Genesis that made you want to work here as a Fermentation Scientist?
As a biochemical engineer, I’ve always had a strong emphasis in cellular respiration/metabolic engineering. The idea of working with bioreactors and being able to see how cells replicate and sporulate through various biochemical pathways sounded really interesting to me.
I also really love the Genesis core values, especially upon reading it for the first time before my interview. The core values would make any person feel comfortable working at the company. Especially after reading my favorite one, which is: “We value people as our most important asset.”
What’s one thing that drives you in your work?
My biggest motive for working hard at Genesis Biosciences would be our main objective, which is to be a market driven company and customer focused.
As an engineer, my goal is to provide solutions and plans to further expand on the development of the company.
I really like how any employee is able to bring forth new ideas to our management department or CEO to better the company.
This really shows how Genesis stays true towards consistently being customer focused, while making every worker feel like their opinion and ideas matter. This train of thought is what drives me every day in everything that I do at this company.
What’s the best thing about working at Genesis?
The culture and atmosphere at Genesis Biosciences is awesome! I have never worked at a company where there is so much diversity and bilingual people to work with!
Working in this kind of an environment really makes any individual at the company feel appreciated for who they are and the values that they possess.
I also really like the importance of teamwork and how each worker helps one another out to ultimately produce high quality products. Workers at Genesis act as a whole team, united together as one huge group to do the very best that they can in everything that the company represents and stands for.
What does your typical day as a Fermentation Scientist include?
While working on the production floor, I monitor our bioreactors to ensure that the cell media culture is growing/sporulating properly under the correct parameters.
During downstream processing, I perform centrifugation and operate our spray dryer to produce the final product following pasteurization.
In the laboratory department, I create cell cultivation agar plates and broths for initial cell augmentation. I also validate the cleanliness of our fermentation equipment through the use of microbial screening methods.
What’s the most challenging part of this industry?
The most challenging part of working in a microbial based industry is to develop certain growth parameters and cleaning procedures that would help increase the colony forming unit counts while reducing the amount of contamination risk points.
As bacteria are organisms it can sometimes be pretty hard to understand the morphology and characteristics associated with each single isolated colony in regard to receptor structures and protein synthesis/DNA replication. No two colonies are ever the same and this fact sometimes makes it hard to grow certain strains.
What’s your personal philosophy, if you have one?
“If you want to make the world a better place, take a look at yourself and make a change!”
This is actually a philosophy written by another person, but I truly follow this phrase in my heart and soul.
Instead of always pointing fingers and telling other people that they are wrong in what they do in their lives, we should change our personal values in life to help one another to get through the day. There is always a person in need of help whether we know about it or not. Sometimes it just takes a positive compliment or a simple gesture to make a person’s life better!
What is one thing the general public might not know about your job as Fermentation Scientist?
The amount of knowledge that goes into working in a microbial based fermentation department is sometimes misunderstood.
A lot of judgement calls are made based upon the operator’s discretion and because organisms have their own unique characteristics and structure, it can really be difficult to come to conclusions.
What would you say is your / Genesis’ greatest achievement so far?
My greatest achievement at Genesis Biosciences would have to be my commitment to getting the job done within a specified time limit as well as the integrity that I represent by working off-shift continuously with a solid work ethic.
I work past my regular work hours on a consistent basis as well as coming in on weekends to make sure that our products are produced or to assist any of my team members in any possible way that I can.
As a result, we are able to produce twice as much product as we were able to when I first started this job and we are also able to attract more customers because of the high quality/yield that our products come with.
What’s next for you at Genesis as Fermentation Scientist?
Going forward, I’m always looking for ways to improve as a person in general and help people in whatever way that I can by following the Genesis core values. This company is continuously developing and incorporating new ideas and protocols every day.
As the company develops more and more, I will try to learn new techniques and practices as well in order to move the company towards becoming a cGMP working environment. I have a lot of faith that Genesis will become a very large bacteria manufacturing company within the years to come and I am truly excited and honored to be a part of this great company. The future for Genesis looks very promising!
To find out more about the work of Zaker Khan and Genesis Biosciences, visit our About page.
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