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Staff Bioinformatics Scientist - Computational Biology

San Mateo County, California, US
Closing date
Nov 30, 2021

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Academic / Research
Informatics / GIS
Statistics, Biology
Salary Type
Employment Type
Full time
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GRAIL is a healthcare company whose mission is to detect cancer early, when it can be cured. GRAIL is focused on alleviating the global burden of cancer by developing pioneering technology to detect and identify multiple deadly cancer types early. The company is using the power of next-generation sequencing, population-scale clinical studies, and state-of-the-art computer science and data science to enhance the scientific understanding of cancer biology, and to develop its multi-cancer early detection blood test. GRAIL is headquartered in Menlo Park, CA with locations in Washington, D.C., North Carolina, and the United Kingdom. GRAIL, LLC is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Illumina, Inc. (NASDAQ:ILMN). For more information, please visit
This position is with GRAIL's computational biology and interpretation team centered at Menlo Park, CA. The team works with some of the largest, richest biological datasets in the world to find biological signals and patterns to guide GRAIL's assays, pipelines, and product strategies. We are part of GRAIL's Bioinformatics and Data Science organization and work with scientists, clinicians, and engineers on all aspects that relate next-generation sequencing data to clinical information and cancer biology.

You will:
  • Lead end-to-end analyses that include tool development, processing, analysis, iteration with partners, and presentation of results.
  • Design, execute, and own computationally efficient software solutions to analyze large, complex genomics datasets using machine learning and statistical methods to generate biological insights.
  • Build and support tools and methods that reinforce scientific rigor and quality and which maintain GRAIL's statistical culture.
  • Investigate the biology of cell free nucleic acid in cancer, generate statistically secure findings, and relate them to performance and clinical value of molecular tests.
  • Interact cross-functionally and work closely with interdisciplinary teams including software engineering, clinical, research, product development, laboratory operations, and external collaborators.

Your analyses will result in discoveries in cancer biology, impactful publications, and products for early detection and clinical management of cancer.

Your Background Includes:
  • Ph.D. in Bioinformatics, Computer Science, Computational Biology, Statistics, Biological Sciences, Cancer Biology, Genetics, Genomics, Physics, or equivalent preparation and experience.
  • Deep understanding of statistical and machine learning tools for the analysis of genomics datasets and their use in clinical test development.
  • Proven ability to translate this knowledge into software tools that can be applied to large 100TB+ genomics datasets, using Map/Reduce type systems.
  • Demonstrated industry expertise in various programming languages (preferred Go, R, otherwise Python, C++, Java, C#), strong experience with version control tools and reproducible research practices in a Linux environment.
  • Consistent track record of scientific computation contributions demonstrated by impactful tools used in commercial products and by the scientific community, peer-reviewed publications, intellectual property, and awards.
  • 5 years of demonstrated ability in positions of growing responsibility.
  • Proven record of design, execution and leadership of interdisciplinary industry projects preferably in a regulated environment, involving oncology applications, next-generation sequencing, or molecular tests.
  • Self-direction, willingness to both teach others and learn new techniques.
  • Effective written and verbal communication skills.

GRAIL is an Equal Employment Office and Affirmative Action Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, protected veteran status, disability or any other legally protected status. We will reasonably accommodate all individuals with disabilities so that they can participate in the job application or interview process, to perform essential job functions, and to receive other benefits and privileges of employment. Please contact us to request accommodation.

Following extensive monitoring, research, consideration of business implications, and advice from internal and external experts, GRAIL has made the decision to require all U.S. employees receive the COVID-19 vaccines as a condition of employment. "Full vaccination" is defined as two weeks after both doses of a two-dose vaccine or two weeks since a single-dose vaccine has been administered. Anyone unable to be vaccinated, either because of a sincerely held religious belief or a medical condition or disability that prevents them from being vaccinated, can request a reasonable accommodation.
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