Bioinformatician - WormBase
Location: EMBL-EBI, Hinxton near Cambridge, UK
Staff Category: Staff Member
Contract Duration: 3 years
Grading: Grade 5 or 6 (starting at £2,676 or £2,994 after tax per month)
Closing Date: 10 April 2020
Reference Number: EBI01612
We are seeking a talented bioinformatician to work on WormBase at the EMBL European Bioinformatics Institute (EMBL-EBI).

Caenorhabditis elegansis a nematode worm studied extensively by scientists around the world as a model of human biology. WormBase ( is an international consortium dedicated to accelerating research using C. elegansby providing integrated information on its genome and genetics. EMBL-EBI acts as the genomics and bioinformatics hub for the project, curating the canonical reference genome and annotation, and designing and deploying large-scale data curation, analysis and integration pipelines.  

WormBase is a founding member of Alliance of Genome Resources (, a major new initiative to centralise certain aspects of the major model organism knowledgebases. The team has a prominent role in this project, and also collaborates closely with the Wellcome Sanger Institute to produce WormBase ParaSite (, which uses the Ensembl platform ( to provide access to hundreds of genomes for parasitic worms that damage human health and food supply.

Your role

Your role will be to annotate and analyse genomic data for C. elegansand other nematodes, for integration into WormBase. Specific areas of focus include (a) curation and analysis of nematode RNASeq gene expressiondata; (b) annotation of protein-coding and non-coding gene structures; and (c) curation and analysis of genomic variationdata from nematode population genomics studies. Your main responsibilities will be:
  • Maintain and develop software and pipelines for genomic data organisation, analysis and integration
  • Collaborate on the development of WormBase database model and infrastructure
  • Liaise with the nematode research community to identify high priority data sets for integration
  • Curate and organise nematode genomic data sets for integration into WormBase
  • Present work to peers and project partners

You have

You should have a degree in biological or computer science, with a post-graduate qualification (Masters or PhD) in bioinformatics or a related subject. Specific skills and experience we are looking for include:
  • Practical experience working with relational Databases platforms (e.g. MySQL, Postgres)
  • Experience working with genome analysis and annotation tools
  • Proficiency in a scripting language (e.g. Perl or Python)
  • Excellent communication skills to work within a project where curators, bioinformaticians and software developers work closely together

You might also have

The ideal candidate will have significant (two or more years) experience working with genomes and genomic data in a service environment. Knowledge of model organism genetics (especially C. elegans), and experience working with the Ensembl platform, will be considered significant plusses. 

Why join us

At EMBL-EBI, we help scientists realise the potential of ‘big data’ in biology by enabling them to exploit complex information to make discoveries that benefit mankind. Working for EMBL-EBI gives you an opportunity to apply your skills and energy for the greater good. As part of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), we are a non-profit, intergovernmental organisation funded by over 27 member states and two associate member states. We are located on the Wellcome Genome Campus near Cambridge in the UK, and our 850 staff are engineers, technicians, scientists and other professionals from all over the world.

EMBL is an inclusive, equal opportunity employer offering attractive conditions and benefits appropriate to an international research organisation. The remuneration package comprises a competitive salary, a comprehensive pension scheme and health insurance, educational and other family related benefits where applicable, as well as financial support for relocation and installation. For more information about pay and benefits click here.

We have an informal culture, international working environment and excellent professional development opportunities but one of the really amazing things about us is the concentration of technical and scientific expertise – something you probably won’t find anywhere else.

If you’ve ever visited the campus you’ll have experienced first-hand our friendly, collegial and supportive atmosphere, set in the beautiful Cambridgeshire countryside. Our staff also enjoy excellent sports facilities including a gym, a free shuttle bus, an on-site nursery, cafés and restaurant and a library.

What else you need to know

To view a copy of the full job description please click here

To apply please submit a covering letter and CV through our online system. Applications are welcome from all nationalities and this will continue after Brexit. For more information please see our website. Visa information will be discussed in more depth with applicants selected for interview.

EMBL-EBI is committed to achieving gender balance and strongly encourages applications from women, who are currently under-represented at all levels.

Appointment will be based on merit alone.

This position is limited to the project duration specified.

Applications will close at 23:00 GMT on the date listed above.