Careers at Children's Cancer Institute
Senior Bioinformatics Research Officer

Randwick - Sydney, Australia  
Employment Type:
Full-Time Fixed Term  
Computational Biology (CB)
Supporting Documentation:

  • Innovative, collaborative and team-orientated environment
  • Modern, world-class facilities
  • Convenient Randwick location, across the road from the UNSW Light Rail Stop
  • Very flexible working options

The ZERO Childhood Cancer National Personalised Medicine Program (ZERO) is Australia’s first and most comprehensive personalised medicine program for children and young people. A unique, multidisciplinary program bringing together cutting-edge science, the latest technology, and the brightest minds in research and clinical care, it is on a path to change the model of care for children with cancer today. Having already demonstrated significant impact in improving the lives of children faced with the most challenging prognosis, the program is now in preparation to expand and grow to include all Australian children and young people with cancer by 2023.

We have been awarded a Cancer Australia grant entitled “Decoding the Dark Matter of the High-Risk Paediatric Cancer Genome”. Despite the comprehensive molecular profiling techniques applied through the ZERO program (ie tumour and germline WGS, RNA-seq and methylome profiling), in many tumours we are unable to identify the definitive genetic driver(s). We hypothesised that this could be due to current limitations in interpreting noncoding or atypical variation, some of which will predict therapeutic response. The grant has 4 aims: to investigate atypical splicing, regulatory mutations including enhancer hijacking, as well as the role somatic mobile elements and viruses and to translate these methods to the clinic by applying them to patient tumours enrolled onto ZERO.

We are seeking a Senior Bioinformatics Research Officer, who will be responsible for achieving the research objectives of this grant. The successful candidate will be an independent, highly motivated and talented researcher, with a passion for conducting high quality research in the area of paediatric oncology computational biology. This discovery research project will predominantly develop methods to characterise the rates of atypical variation, applied to thousands of paediatric tumours with matched WGS and RNA-seq. They will work closely with other members of the Computational Biology Group to support the development, and delivery of a training program aimed at building capacity, knowledge, and expertise across institute research staff in bioinformatics, computational biology, genomics and study design.


Responsibilities will include, but are not limited to:

  • Developing novel approaches to study understand high-risk paediatric cancer, including:
    • The noncoding impact of mutations on gene regulation
    • The non-human drivers of cancer, including viruses and bacteria
    • The impact of somatic retrotransposition upon gene regulation and gene structure
  • Developing approaches to understand cohorts of cancer genome data, contrasted to public data
  • Analysis of publicly available cancer genome data, and the presentation of this data to be used by a wide audience, including but not limited to the precision medicine curation team.
  • Be motivated to seek academic career progression opportunities through driving manuscript writing, grant writing and presenting research and conferences.
  • Support the computational biology group and collaborations with paper writing, and grant writing
  • Interact with members of the precision medicine curation team to translate this research into clinical practice.
  • Day-to-day support and occasional training of students and junior staff as required.
  • Staying abreast on advances in genomics and next generation sequencing technology in general, maintaining knowledge about clinical genomic testing and personalised medicine
  • Develop and apply tools to combine biological data sets with ‘omic data sets and clinical outcome data sets to better integrate, manipulate, and interpret a child’s multi-‘omics tumour profile (genome, transcriptome, biology)


Qualifications, experience and skills required:

  • PhD in computational biology, genomics, or related field
  • Highly developed skills in bioinformatics and genomics, with a minimum of 8 years experience
  • High-level of proficiency in bash, R, and python
  • Strong demonstrated expertise working with multiple next generation sequencing methods
  • Experience developing modularised analysis pipelines (eg Docker) which operate in a commercial or academic cloud environments are desirable
  • Ability to develop, manage and maintain internal and external relationships, including collaborations
  • Expertise in developing diagnostic assays, and assessing their analytical performance is desirable but not essential
  • Experience working with clinical pathology services is desirable but not essential
  • Experience in clinical interpretation of genomic data is highly desirable
  • Highly motivated to produce high quality outcomes in pursuit of translational and clinical excellence


This is an excellent opportunity to work in an inspiring workplace. You'll be rewarded with a friendly and professional flexible work environment, comprehensive on-campus facilities, competitive salary, salary packaging options, access to a leading EAP program and regular social activities. Join a group of dedicated people in a performance-driven environment to achieve success and discover what it's like to look forward to coming to work every day and make a real difference. We're looking for people who share our values of accountability, integrity and camaraderie, teamwork, sharing and excellence, success and satisfaction.

A detailed job description and additional information about Children's Cancer Institute can be found on our website at: . We embrace diversity and encourage applications from people from diverse backgrounds and cultures.

To apply, please click the 'APPLY' link and forward both your resume AND cover letter (mandatory) clearly addressing the qualifications, experience and skills required.

Note: Applications will be reviewed prior to the closing date; which is dependent on the status of the recruitment process. Only successfully shortlisted candidates will be contacted.