Research Associate in Biostatistics
University of Cambridge
United Kingdom

We are seeking applications for a Research Associate post to work with Elena Vigorito in the Wallace group at the MRC Biostatistics Unit (BSU). The main interest of the group is to develop statistical methods to understand mechanisms underlying immune-mediated disease.

We seek a statistician interested in human genetics who wants to develop methodology in hierarchical Bayesian models and apply it to further understand the biology of Juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA). Despite recent progress with the emergence of novel biologic treatments several challenges still remain with regard to disease management and treatment allocation. This is in part due to our incomplete knowledge of the molecular pathways associated with disease susceptibility and prognosis. We seek to exploit genetic information to map genetic variants to the genes they regulate, and hence to molecular pathways in a cell type specific manner relevant to the disease process. To this end we will identify cis-eQTLs using BaseQTL, a Bayesian method that leverages information from allele specific expression to increase statistical power. Key aspects of the project would be to extend BaseQTL to identify cell type specific pathways by modelling interaction effects between genotypes and cell counts from disease samples, to explore the use of variational inference to speed up computation and to apply the method to samples from JIA patients. The methodology developed in this work, although originally motivated by JIA, would be useful for a wide range of conditions.

For an informal discussion about this post please contact Elena Vigorito (elena.vigorito@mrc-bsu.cam.ac.uk).

The MRC Biostatistics Unit is one of Europe's leading biostatistics research institutions. Our focus is to deliver new analytical and computational strategies based on sound statistical principles for the challenging tasks facing biomedicine and public health. The Unit is situated on the Cambridge Biomedical Campus, one of the world's most vibrant centres of biomedical research, which includes the University of Cambridge's Clinical School, two major hospitals, the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, and the world headquarters of Astra Zeneca.

The Unit is actively seeking to increase diversity among its staff, including promoting an equitable representation of men and women. The Unit therefore especially encourages applications from women, from minority ethnic groups and from those with non-standard career paths. Appointment will be made on merit.

We welcome applications from those wishing to work part-time.

Fixed-term: The funds for this post are available for 18 months or until 31 March 2023 in the first instance.

Click the 'Apply' button below to register an account with our recruitment system (if you have not already) and apply online.

Closing Date: 12th April 2021

Please ensure that you upload a covering letter and CV in the Upload section of the online application. The covering letter should outline how you match the criteria for the post and why you are applying for this role. If you upload any additional documents which have not been requested, we will not be able to consider these as part of your application.

Please include details of your referees, including email address and phone number, one of which must be your most recent line manager.

Please quote reference SL26004 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from all sections of society.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.


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