Postdoctoral Fellow - Cancer Dependency Map Analytics
Salary £31,503 to £39,492 (dependant on experience) plus excellent benefits
Fixed term for 3 years
The Wellcome Sanger Institute is seeking for a highly motivated researcher with strong skills in computational functional genomics to fill a postdoctoral fellow position, in collaboration with Open Targets. The aim of the fellow is to develop new algorithms and computational tools for the analysis of large-scale cancer pharmacogenomics and functional-genomics datasets to identify new oncology therapeutic targets and markers of gene-essentiality/drug-response.
To achieve this, the successful candidate will design methods to transform raw data into interpretable and predictive models via systematic statistical inference and unsupervised machine learning. This will encompass integrating data generated in house from large scale in-vitro drug/genome-editing screens with the multi-modal characterization of the underlying models and that of cancer patients (from publicly available resources) in order to: (i) optimize/identify the most clinically relevant molecular determinants of gene-essentiality/drug-response; (ii) prioritize potential new targets/therapeutic-markers on the basis of unmeet clinical needs and translational potential.
The selected candidate will join the Cancer Dependency Map Analytics team and will actively interact with the international Cancer Dependency Map consortium, whose goal is to identify vulnerabilities and dependencies that could be exploited therapeutically in every cancer cell to advance personalized cancer treatments. The groups involved in this initiative have already characterized up to 1,000 cancer cell lines using high throughput genomic, transcriptomic, and proteomic techniques, as well as applied large scale drug panels to assess cell-line specific sensitivities. Work is currently ongoing to identify genes that inhibit cell growth when knocked out using CRISPR/Cas9 -- these could then be used as targets for therapies.
The successful candidate will perform original research to globally advance the state of the field with novel methods, data resources and results (applying methods and models to uncover new insight into cancer dependencies).
This position offers the opportunity to work at one of the world’s leading genomic centres at the forefront of genomic research. The successful candidate will have access to Sanger's computational resources, including a 15000+ core computational cluster, the largest in life science research in Europe, and multiple petabytes of high-speed cluster file systems.
We are part of a dynamic and collaborative environment at the Genome Campus and, although we seek someone who can work independently, the selected candidate will have the opportunity to interact with researchers across many Programmes at the Institute.
This PDF post is currently being advertised alongside a Postdoctoral Fellow– Modeling Gene Essentiality in Cancer (ref 83076) in Cellular Genetics
- Motivation to understand what makes a gene a good therapeutic target in cancer, interest in science, ability to get things done
- PhD in a relevant subject area (Physics, Mathematics, Computer Science, Engineering, Statistics, Computational Biology, Bioinformatics, Molecular Biology)
- Ability to devise novel computational methods
- Basic knowledge of statistics, combinatorics
- Full working proficiency in a scripting language (e.g. R, Python, Perl), and UNIX/Linux
- Ability to work independently, organise workload, and communicate ideas and results
- Strong publishing record
- Basic Knowledge of genomics, molecular biology, and cancer genetics
- Basic Knowledge of machine learning, information theory
- Previous experience with genetic screens
- Previous experience with high throughput biological assay analysis
- Previous experience in creating finished software
- Full working proficiency in a compiled language (e.g. C, C++, D, Julia, Fortran)
- Previous experience with implementing–omics data analysis pipelines on a cluster
- Proven independent working style, problem solving, data analysis and generation of novel ideas
Postdoctoral Fellows are typically in their first or second postdoctoral position as part of a period of early career research training.
The Cancer Dependency Map is a collaborative initiative involving the Wellcome Sanger Institute and the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT. By leveraging the expertise and infrastructure available at both organisations, we aim to identify genetic dependencies and vulnerabilities that could be exploited therapeutically in every cancer cell, to advance personalized cancer treatments.
Open Targets is a pioneering public-private partnership between Biogen, Celgene, EMBL-EBI, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), Takeda, and the Wellcome Sanger Institute and is located on the Wellcome Genome Campus in Hinxton, near Cambridge, UK. Open Targets brings together expertise from six complementary institutions to systematically identify and prioritise targets from which safe and effective medicines can be developed, to help others find good targets, and to get those targets adopted into drug discovery pipelines.
We currently focus on oncology, immunology and neurodegeneration through an R&D framework that can be applied to all aspects of human disease. We believe that evidence generated in the most human relevant systems showing which targets are causing disease will have a significant impact on the successful development of new medicines. To build a good therapeutic hypothesis we need to find not only which targets are involved, but also how we might alter complex disease mechanisms.
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:
- Group 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, cricket pitch and sports hall plus a range of dining facilities
- Active Campus Sports and Social Club
- Free Campus Bus Service
Genome Research Limited is an Equal Opportunity employer. As part of our commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion and promoting equality in careers in science, we hold an Athena SWAN Bronze Award and have an active Equality, Diversity and Inclusion programme of activity. We will consider all applicants without discrimination on grounds of disability, sexual orientation, pregnancy or maternity leave status, race or national or ethnic origin, age, religion or belief, gender identity or re-assignment, marital or civil partnership status, protected veteran status (if applicable) or any other characteristic protected by law. We are open to a range of flexible working options including part-time or full-time employment as well as flexible hours due to caring or other commitments.
Please include a covering letter and CV with your application. Closing date for applications: 10th June 2018.
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