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Senior Principal Research Scientist, Statistical Genetics

Semma Therapeutics

Semma Therapeutics

Oxford, UK
Posted on Friday, June 7, 2024

Job Description

We are seeking a computational biologist with expertise in applying statistical genetics methods for analysis of large-scale human genetic data to identify and validate targets, and support the development of transformative therapies. This position is part of a global Data and Computational Sciences team at Vertex focused on utilizing genetics to drive development of therapies for serious human diseases. You will collaborate closely with computational biologists within DCS and project leaders across the Vertex research sites utilizing your statistical genetics expertise to identify and answer critical questions that can be effectively addressed using human genetic data. You will develop an aligned long-term strategy for how statistical genetics can drive drug development and having an impact on target identification, target validation, biomarker discovery, and identification of addressable patient population. You will be expected to evaluate and apply cutting-edge statistical genetics methods that will enable the project teams to make data-driven decisions. Proactive communication, seamless cross-functional collaboration and an enterprise mindset are critical for success in this role. This is an on-site or hybrid eligible position based out of our site in Oxford, UK, requiring at least 3 days/week onsite.

Key responsibilities:

  • Proactive collaboration with the project computational lead as the statistical genetics expert, to identify key project needs that can be efficiently addressed using human genetics.
  • Set strategy on use of genetics to impact drug development across the Vertex programs.
  • Take on technical leadership for the Vertex collaboration with Genomics PLC as a core member of the joint research team.
  • Work with research leadership to align on prioritized goals and statistical genetics activities across projects.
  • Partner with DCS genomics team members, identifying opportunities to improve the use of statistical genetics for internal activities
  • Perform advanced, computational analyses of human genetics data through deep critical thinking, published findings and best practices from the field, strong statistics, and data science visualizations.
  • Set standards for genetic evaluation of new and existing targets within the DCS team.
  • Evaluate advances in the field, and internalize new methods and datasets as needed to advance Vertex strategic priorities.
  • Distill complex analyses and scientific results into key take-home messages and recommendations for next steps to a broad audience.
  • As an expert in the field, provide reliable advice to other team members on a regular basis.
  • Provide technical recommendations broadly within DCS regarding analyses of human genetic data

Minimum Qualifications:

  • PhD degree (or master’s degree) in statistical genetics, bioinformatics, genetic epidemiology, biostatistics, computational biology, or proven working experience in a related field with productive, relevant industry or post-doctoral experience
  • A proven track record in the analysis, visualization, and interpretation of large scale human genetic data in a drug development context.
  • Deep familiarity with large scale human genetics datasets, GWAS, meta-analysis, and large genetic studies.
  • Demonstrated ability to work across cross-functional teams, ensuring timely progress
  • Ability to identify gaps and propose solutions around current genomic analyses, including bringing in new technologies and capabilities when appropriate
  • Superior communication skills, demonstrating confidence and versatility in presenting verbally to diverse audiences and writing technical documents
  • Expertise with rapidly applying computational methods and bioinformatics tools to large-scale data
  • Proficiency with R and high-performance computing systems; solid understanding of statistics
  • A team-oriented growth mindset that welcomes feedback from others and supports other team members; a positive attitude that enthusiastically tackles and overcomes challenges
  • Skilled in mentoring others, resolving technical problems, maintaining procedural and ethical standards, and cultivating healthy team morale

Company Information

Vertex is a global biotechnology company that invests in scientific innovation.

Vertex is committed to equal employment opportunity and non-discrimination for all employees and qualified applicants without regard to a person's race, color, sex, gender identity or expression, age, religion, national origin, ancestry, ethnicity, disability, veteran status, genetic information, sexual orientation, marital status, or any characteristic protected under applicable law. Vertex is an E-Verify Employer in the United States. Vertex will make reasonable accommodations for qualified individuals with known disabilities, in accordance with applicable law.

Any applicant requiring an accommodation in connection with the hiring process and/or to perform the essential functions of the position for which the applicant has applied should make a request to the recruiter or hiring manager, or contact Talent Acquisition at