Canada’s Michael Smith Genome Sciences Centre (GSC)

Today’s Research. Tomorrow’s Medicine.

The GSC is a department of the BC Cancer Research Institute and a high-throughput genome sequencing facility. We are leaders in genomics, proteomics and bioinformatics in pursuit of novel treatment strategies for cancers and other diseases.

Among the world’s first genome centres to be established within a cancer clinic, for more than two decades our scientists and innovators have been designing and deploying cutting-edge technologies to benefit health and advance clinical research.

Among the GSC’s most significant accomplishments are the first publication to demonstrate the use of whole-genome sequencing to inform cancer treatment planning, the first published sequence of the SARS coronavirus genome and major contributions to the first physical map of the human genome as part of the Human Genome Project.

By joining the GSC you will become part of an exceptional and diverse team of scientists, clinicians, experts and professionals operating at the leading edge of clinical research. We look for people who share our core values — science, timeliness, respect — to join us on our mission to use genome science for the betterment of health and society.


The GSC is currently looking for a Research Associate to work on the Genome Canada funded LSARP, “Canada’s Earth BioGenome project”. 

The successful incumbent will work with the project team to lead the activities on the development, application and validation of novel approaches and workflows in the area of integrated de novo genome assembly over multiple sequencing technologies. They will develop automated bioinformatics workflow as well as assembly submission. They will also work closely together with Earth BioGenome Project (EBP) consortium on the sequencing and assembly standards. They will work with Project Leaders to ensure all scientific milestones are achieved and contribute to progress reporting as required. There will be expectations to represent the project within the global EBP consortium and the development of outreach materials and website information. Opportunities will exist for further research on the genomic information developed and for scholarly publication.​


  • Work with multidisciplinary scientists at the GSC and collaborators to analyze whole genome and transcriptome sequence data, and set up collaborative working plans.
  • Develop and maintain bioinformatic pipelines for genome assembly and data analysis.
  • Produces written documentation of algorithms, validations, SOPs, and other processes related to pipeline updates and procedures as required.
  • Presents results of bioinformatics software testing internally and externally.
  • Performs literature searches, testing and validation of new data analysis software related to bioinformatics pipelines.
  • Performs other related duties as required.

Skills and Abilities

  • Expertise in bioinformatics, emphasizing genome sequence analysis and gene annotation.
  • Knowledge and experience using scientific tools, technologies and online resources as pertaining to de novo genome assembly.
  • Fluency in multiple programming languages, including Python, Javascript and SQL.
  • Expertise developing and operating in a UNIX/Linus environment and writing shell scripts.
  • Experience developing custom scripts and pipelines using high performance computing and other available tools. Pipelines may include de novo assembly, annotation, database query, pan-genome construction and visualization tools, RNA-seq, phylogenetic tree reconstruction.
  • Previous API development projects using Open API or Rest API is a plus.
  • Excellent communication and organization skills, and ability to efficiently manage time and workflow, including skillfully prioritizing both long-term projects and day-to-day responsibilities.
  • Ability for critical thinking and independent learning.
  • Experience in a supervisory role is an asset.  


Please submit a detailed cover letter and resume to, using RA_R00006_2021_09_28 in the subject line of your email.

This position will remain online until filled.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the position would require working remotely on a temporary basis. This restriction would be re-evaluated upon re-contracting.

We believe that equity, diversity and inclusivity are essential for the advancement of human knowledge and science.

We welcome all applicants and provide all employees with equal opportunity for advancement, regardless of race, colour, ancestry, place of origin, political belief, religion, marital status, family status, physical or mental disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, conviction of a criminal or summary conviction offence unrelated to their employment.

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadian citizens and permanent residents will be given priority.

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