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Postdoc (Epilepsy Statistical Genetics) - The Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research

An opportunity exists for a one year maternity leave replacement research officer to join the Bahlo laboratory in the Population Health and Immunity Division at The Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research (WEHI) working jointly with Professors Sam Berkovic and Ingrid Scheffer at the Epilepsy Research Centre (ERC), Heidelberg.

The WEHI has one of the largest computational biology research groups in Australia, with a reputation for developing statistical and computational methodology that has become widely used around the world. The Bahlo lab has developed methods for the analysis of familial genetic data, including next generation sequencing data, that has led to the discovery of over ten novel genes, including several epilepsy genes (Berkovic et al, 2008 AJHG, Corbett et al, 2010 AJHG, Corbett et al, 2011 AJHG, Arsov et al, 2011 AJHG, Smith et al, 2012 AJHG, Smith et al, 2013 HMG). The ERC group discovered the first gene for epilepsy and are the acknowledged international leaders in the clinical and molecular genetics of epilepsy so this joint position is a special opportunity to work with two world leading laboratories.

The appointee will undertake bioinformatics analyses of genetic data generated for family and cohort studies in epilepsy. The data will be primarily next generation sequencing data from whole-exome, whole-genome sequencing or targeted sequencing using the locally implemented Molecular Inversion Probe Assay (MIPS) platform. The research officer will oversee several exciting studies, analysing data, maintaining and further developing the pipelines and managing the research outcomes from these projects. The work is highly likely to lead to high-impact publications with the expectation of presentations at national and international conferences. The research officer will use advanced bioinformatics tools developed at the WEHI and elsewhere and will have access to high quality computing facilities.

Applicants with a recent higher degree in a relevant discipline are welcome to apply. Relevant disciplines include computer science, mathematics, statistics, computational biology or genetics. Applicants need to have experience in the analysis of next generation sequencing data and a good understanding of genetics. The position requires high-level project-management skills, strong programming and data analysis skills and, in particular strong communication skills to ensure excellent communication as a key person working between the two laboratories.

The positions will be for 1 year in the first instance. There is potential for continuation of the position after the maternity replacement contract is finished. Salary is dependent upon qualifications and experience. Up to 17% superannuation and attractive salary packaging options are available.

The research officer will report to Melanie Bahlo, Sam Berkovic and Ingrid Scheffer. The successful applicant will spend one day a week (Wednesdays) at the Epilepsy Research Centre in Heidelberg.

A position description is available.

General enquiries should be directed to Professor Melanie Bahlo.

Written applications including cover letter, CV and the names of 3 professional referees should be emailed in PDF format to, quoting reference WEHI/CAMB in the subject line.

Application closing date: Friday 22 July 2016

At the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute, we strive to ensure our staff and students enjoy a great working environment. We value diversity and gender equity in our workforce and promote flexible working arrangements for staff to balance working requirements and personal needs.

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