Princess Máxima Center – Scientist bioinformatics (PhD or MSc)

The Princess Máxima Center for Pediatric Oncology is a recently started, fastly growing research hospital for children with cancer. The institute houses an increasing number of research groups, which aim to develop cures for all children with cancer with minimal long-term side effects of existing treatment.

The group of Childhood Cancer Genetics and Predisposition aims to identify and investigate genetic aberrations involved in the process of cancer initiation and progression in order to understand genetic predisposition and disease recurrence. Our research projects focus around two major themes:

  • the genomic aberrations associated with therapy resistance and relapse in leukemia
  • identification of genetic abnormalities associated with childhood cancer predisposition

Within the group we currently have a vacancy for a scientist with bioinformatics training to support various projects in the group.

Research Project

The growing availability of genome-wide profiling and sequencing technologies revolutionizes our understanding of cancer genomes, and provides us with opportunities to better predict risks for cancer development, progression, and response. Single gene mutations have been identified with a major impact on cancer risk and outcome. In the majority of cases, however, the cause of cancer onset and progression is dependent on a more complex interplay between genetic factors, which is more challenging to elucidate. We try to unravel this interplay of genetic factors by applying sophisticated analysis of whole genome sequencing and transcriptomics data of both tumor samples and normal inherited DNA, with the ultimate aim to identify novel genes and mechanisms involved in an individual’s risk for cancer development and therapy response.

Tasks and responsibilities
The bioinformatics scientist will be responsible for the coordination of all bioinformatics tasks within the group, support various projects from PhD students and postdocs, and remain up to date with respect to new developments in the field.

Specific tasks will include

  • the development and implementation of state of the art technologies and pipelines for the annotation and analysis of germline sequencing data from childhood cancer patients.
  • the extraction of mutational spectra and signatures from tumor sequencing data to unravel pathological mechanisms that are active during tumorigenesis.
  • integration of germline and somatic to find novel clues for cancer predisposition.
  • ambition to initiate new research projects is strongly encouraged.

The candidate will operate in a strongly integrated team of bioinformaticians from different PI groups within the institute, with connections to bioinformatics groups within UMCU campus.

Skills and education

  • PhD or MSc with bioinformatics training
  • Experience with Linux as well as Java and R programming
  • Affinity with working with large datasets
  • Strong drive for career in science
  • Strong communicative skills
  • Self-critical mindset
  • Independent working style with strong focus to (interdiciplinary) collaboration

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