Wellcome Sanger Institute

Computational Postdoctoral Fellow in Medical Genomics

Wellcome Sanger Institute

Do you want to help us improve human health and understand life on Earth? Make your mark by shaping the future to enable or deliver life-changing science to solve some of humanity’s greatest challenges.

About the Role:

We are seeking a highly motivated and creative postdoctoral fellow to join the Martin group at the Wellcome Sanger Institute for a 3 year fixed term contract. The group investigates the genetic basis of rare and common diseases and complex traits, primarily in populations with European and South Asian ancestry.

About Us:

We currently have projects in the following areas:

  • The role of both rare and common variants in rare developmental disorders, using data from the Deciphering Developmental Disorders study (N=13,000 exome-sequenced patients) and the Genomics England 100,000 Genomes project (N~33,000 whole-genome sequenced rare disease patients), in collaboration with GeneDx (>60,000 exome sequenced patients) and with Matt Hurles’ group. We have a particular focus on the contribution of recessive variants across diverse populations (building on previous work), and on the interplay of rare and common variants. We are also beginning new projects investigating the genetic contribution to sex differences in autism and autistic traits, and on the impact of endogamy versus consanguinity on rare disease risk.

  • The genetics of cognitive and behavioral traits, using sequence and genotype data from UK Biobank and from two large UK birth cohorts, the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children and the Millenium Cohort Study (N~20,000), in collaboration with with Matt Hurles’ group. This work is building on recent findings about the genetic overlap between rare neurodevelopmental disorders and cognitive/mental health traits in the general population (e.g. Niemi et al., Nature, 2018; Gardner et al., Nature, 2022).

  • The genetic basis of complex diseases and traits in British South Asian populations, using data from the Genes & Health project (N~50,000 British Pakistani and Bangladeshi individuals with linked electronic health records). An industry consortium has recently funded exome-sequencing of the cohort to complement the existing genotype chip data. We are investigating the contribution of rare and common variants to complex disease risk, as well as the role of autozygosity.

You will be responsible for:

 You will be able to help develop a project within these broad areas that suits your interests and skills. Prospective candidates are welcome to contact Hilary Martin with informal queries before deciding whether to apply.

Essential Skills:

Technical Skills:

  • PhD in a relevant area (genetics, genomics, bioinformatics) 

  • Good publishing record

  • Experience analysing large-scale human genetic data 

  • Full working proficiency in Python or Perl, R, and Unix/Linux 

  • Knowledge of the literature on rare and/or common disease genetics 

  • Knowledge of statistical methods appropriate for large-scale genetic research 

 Competencies and Behaviours:

  • Creativity and original scientific ideas 

  • Enthusiasm and commitment 

  • Attention to detail 

  • Strong problem-solving skills 

  • Ability to communicate ideas and results effectively both verbally and in writing 

  • Ability to prioritise, work independently and organise own workload 

  • Ability to collaborate effectively with and independently supervise less experienced scientists 

  • Demonstrates inclusivity and respect for all 

Salary per annum: £34,819-£43,600

Work Pattern:

It is expected that in this role you will work from the office at least 3 days per week.

Application Process:

Please apply with your CV and a Cover Letter outlining how you meet the criteria set out above. Please also indicate in your cover letter why you are interested in joining the Martin group and which of our research areas are of particular interest to you.

Applications will be considered on an ongoing basis and the role will close when a successful appointment has been made.

Working at Wellcome Sanger

Our flexible-hybrid working environment means you can focus on being productive and part of the team while enjoying the benefits of working remotely and from the Genome Campus when you are in the office.

We aim to attract, recruit, retain and develop talent from the widest possible talent pool, thereby gaining insight and access to different markets to generate a greater impact on the world. We have a supportive culture with the following staff networks, LGBTQ+, Parents and Carers and Race Equity to bring people together to share experiences, offer specific support and development opportunities and raise awareness. The networks are also a place for allies to provide support to others.

We want our people to be whoever they want to be because we believe people who bring their best selves to work, do their best work. That’s why we’re committed to creating a truly inclusive culture at Sanger Institute. We will consider all individuals without discrimination and are committed to creating an inclusive environment for all employees, where everyone can thrive.