Advanced Research Assistant - Open Targets

Advanced Research Assistant - Open Targets

Advanced Research Assistant - Open Targets

Salary range: £26,960-£32,622pa (dependent on experience) plus excellent benefits

Fixed term for 2.5 years

We are looking for a highly-motivated, self-driven person to join as an Advanced Research Assistant and provide an experimental support for the group. The prospective candidate will work with Gosia Trynka and Emma Davenport’s groups at the Wellcome Sanger Institute. Our goal is to use genetic approaches to identify gene pathways that are driving autoimmune diseases and to propose novel targets for therapeutic validation.

As a part of an interdisciplinary team of experimentalists, clinical and industry collaborators you will lead the generation of a large scale single cell RNA-seq data from 500 healthy and immune disease patients (sceQTLs). Ideally, you already have experience working with single cell RNA-seq technologies and with primary human immune cells. Due to the scale of the project, excellent organisational skills are critical.

This is an exciting opportunity to be engaged in all aspects of a large scale project, from planning and pilot studies, through to large scale data generation, analysis and novel discoveries. Our goal is to accelerate drug discovery by integrating immune disease GWAS variants with the sceQTLs maps generated in this project to identify the most promising therapeutic targets for follow up by the industry partners working closely with us.

This project forms part of the Open Targets collaboration ( and provides a great opportunity to deliver real translational solutions working at the Wellcome Sanger Institute, with industry partners including GSK, Celgene, Sanofi, and Takeda.

Grade 3
Specific Salary range
26,960 to 32,622 (dependent on experience) plus excellent benefits
Full Time or Part Time
Full Time
Contract Type
Fixed Term - Special Project
Job Reference

Essential Skills

  • Degree in Biological Sciences, or equivalent qualification.
  • Previous work experience in a molecular biology laboratory.
  • Experience with core molecular biology techniques, including sample preparation, RT & qPCR, and RNA/DNA extraction.
  • Excellent organisational and communication skills.
  • Ability to work well as a member of a closely collaborative team.
  • Experience in scaling up protocols and sample management for high-throughput assays.

Ideal Skills

  • Experience in mammalian cell culture.
  • Experience in human blood samples and isolation of immune cells.
  • Experience in immune cells assays, FACS, MACS and cell sorting.
  • Experience with genomic protocols.
  • Experience with single cell protocols.
  • Experience with analysis of genomic data.

Other information

Open Targets is a pioneering public-private partnership between EMBL-EBI (European Bioinformatics Institute), GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), the Wellcome Sanger Institute (Sanger), Celgene, Sanofi and Takeda, located on the Wellcome Genome Campus in Hinxton, near Cambridge, UK.

Open Targets brings together expertise from six complementary institutions to generate evidence on the biological validity of therapeutic targets and provide an initial assessment of the likely effectiveness of pharmacological intervention on these targets, using genome-scale experiments and analysis. Open Targets aims to provide an R&D framework that applies to all aspects of human disease, to improve the success rate for discovering new medicines and share its data openly in the interests of accelerating drug discovery.

Our Campus: Set over 125 acres, the stunning and dynamic Wellcome Genome Campus is the biggest aggregate concentration of people in the world working on the common theme of Genomes and BioData. It brings together a diverse and exceptional scientific community, committed to delivering life-changing science with the reach, scale and imagination to pursue some of humanity’s greatest challenges.

Our Benefits: Our employees have access to a comprehensive range of benefits and facilities including:

  • Defined Contribution Pension Scheme and Life Assurance
  • Group Income Protection
  • Private Health Insurance
  • 25 days annual leave, increasing by one day a year to a maximum of 30
  • Family friendly environment including options for flexible and part-time working, a childcare voucher scheme, Campus Nursery and Summer holiday club
  • Two days paid Employee Volunteering Leave a year
  • Employee Discount Scheme
  • Campus Gym, tennis courts and sports hall plus a range of dining facilities
  • Active Campus Sports and Social Club
  • Free Campus Bus Service

Genome Research Limited hold an Athena SWAN Bronze Award and will consider all individuals without discrimination and are committed to creating an inclusive environment for all employees, where everyone can thrive.

Please include a covering letter and CV with your application. Closing date for applications: 28 August 2019

Interviews will be held between 9 and 11 September 2019