Friday, 16 July 2010

Postdoc position - Genomic variation discovery and visualization

Just a short note...

Even though my position in Leuven only starts in October, I've already been involved in writing and defending a major grant. We've set up a consortium in Leuven (SymBioSys 2) consisting of 6 PIs "focusing on how individual genomic variation leads to disease through cascading effects across biological networks". This should be a good stepping stone to get my own lab running.

The grant concerns several workpackages (six in total), ranging from the analysis of the raw next-gen sequencing data, over the application of network algorithms for gene prioritization to the ultimate application in a couple of disease fields. I'll be in charge of the workpackage "Genomic variation discovery and visualization". Within this WP, we will apply and improve existing methods for the discovery, annotation and prioritization of SNPs and structural variation based on data available from the Leuven University hospital (HiSeq and 454). We'll develop a pipeline that can be used within and outside of the university. In addition - and I envision this to be the bigger part of the work - we'll work on visualization of these data. Several issues remain in this field: data can be too big to be readily visualized (e.g. locations of aberrantly mapped read pairs), or too complex (e.g. structural variation between individuals or family structures).

So I have a postdoc vacancy for someone to work on this project with a good understanding of genetics and next-generation sequencing. He/she should have good programming and statistics skill. Ideally, he/she will have visualization experience as well or be very interested to put his/her teeth into the subject. With visualization experience, I mean for statistical purposes (e.g. using R), but also more general (e.g. using Processing). Expect to be talking a lot about indexing methods, mapreduce, visual encoding, ...

The SymBioSys2 consortium consists of young scientists in the fields of bioinformatics, human genetics and cancer. As I'll only be starting my own group this fall the person doing the postdoc will have the chance to have a real impact on where my group will be going :-)