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.


Job Reference No: RP_R00008_ 2021_05_19

Dr. Aly Karsan and the Karsan lab team at Genome Sciences Centre (GSC) are seeking a Research Programmer to join a Marathon of Hope Cancer Centre research project. The team will be working with other research programmers at the Karsan lab for developing data analysis pipelines for various next-generation sequencing (NGS) data such as but not limited to scRNA-Seq, targeted sequencing, ATAC-Seq, and BS-Seq, for the study of cancer evolution. We seek candidates with strong analytical and programming skills to research, develop, and improve our research pipelines.

The role is ideally suited for detail-oriented individuals with a strong interest in data analysis, research, and scientific programming within a high throughput academic setting.  The Karsan lab has a history of strong publications and can offer great experience in research with full access to the GSC’s world-class compute cluster.  Additionally, the Karsan Lab has a diverse computational biology core for knowledge sharing, collaboration, and support. 


  • Design and implement bioinformatic data pipelines to meet objectives of the project
  • Work with other project team members to develop and test code, and implement analysis
  • Evaluate and incorporate third-party software into pipelines
  • Produce thorough but concise written documentation of experiments, algorithms, validations, and other procedures as required.


  • Graduation from a recognized Bachelor of Science Program in Computer Science or relevant program. A Master’s degree in a relevant field would be a strong asset. 
  • Two (2) years of recent related experience or an equivalent combination of education, training, and experience.

Core Skills and Abilities

  • Expertise with scientific programming and able to provide links to code samples via GitHub
  • Familiarity with molecular and cellular biology
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Demonstrated ability to interpret results
  • Comfortable working in a Unix environment, including experience with shell scripting and common command-line tools
  • Established ability to efficiently organize work assignments and establish priorities
  • Demonstrated interpersonal skills including the ability to work effectively with others in a team environment.

Additional Assets

  • Familiarity in statistical analysis using modern computational tools (experience with any relevant tools will be considered, but R and Python are preferred)
  • Familiarity in next-generation sequencing datasets
  • Understanding of cancer biology
  • Functional knowledge of distributed version control systems, such as SVN or GIT


Please submit a detailed cover letter and resume to, using Research Programmer – Data Scientist, Karsan Lab in the subject line of your email.

This posting will remain online until filled.


We believe that 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.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the position would require working remotely on a temporary basis. This will be re-evaluated once plans to return to the office are made.

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