Associate Director, Early Computational Oncology R&D

AstraZeneca operates in over 100 countries and its innovative medicines are used by millions of patients worldwide.

Do you have expertise in the analysis of single-cell sequencing data from biological models? Would you like to apply your expertise to impact how we overcome drug resistance in cancer in a company that follows the science and turns ideas into life-changing medicines?.

Be a part of the Persist-Seq international consortium, improving our understanding of drug resistance in cancer and building effective strategies to improve cancer treatment. 


About AstraZeneca 

AstraZeneca is a global, science-driven biopharmaceutical company. We are dedicated to discovering, developing, and delivering innovative, meaningful medicines and healthcare solutions that enrich the lives of patients. In AstraZeneca Oncology, our goal is to be at the forefront of developing the next generation of cancer therapies. 


Who we are 

In Oncology R&D, we have an ambition to provide cures for cancer in every form. We are following the science to understand cancer and all its complexities to discover, develop and deliver life-changing treatments and increase the potential to save the lives of people around the world.  


AstraZeneca co-leads Persist-Seq (, an EU-funded consortium of industry and academic partners looking to apply powerful single-cell sequencing technologies to cancer models following drug treatment, to characterise the biology of persistent cancer cells. We anticipate building one of the largest global single-cell datasets in this field.

The Early Computational Oncology team works with our oncology drug project teams throughout the research and early development pipeline, from new target discovery to translational medicine and clinical trials. Our global group aligns its activities to AstraZeneca’s primary areas of focus in Oncology: immuno-oncology, DNA damage response, tumour drivers & resistance, epigenetics, cell therapies and antibody-drug conjugates.  


Who you are 

We are looking for a motivated bioinformatician or data scientist to join the Early Computational Oncology team and take the lead in the analysis of single-cell data from Persist-Seq to identify the altered transcriptional programs and cell states that drive resistance in cancer and help discover new drug targets to overcome resistance. 


Essential Criteria 

  • You will have a PhD (or equivalent graduate degree plus demonstrated experience), combining technical expertise in bioinformatics, data science or computational biology with an emphasis on single-cell sequence data analysis.  

  • You will enjoy using innovative technologies to achieve your research goals and publish the results.  

  • You should have a proven track record of innovation and efficiency, be a collaborative teammate, have excellent organizational skills, and strong verbal and written communications skills. 

  • Python and R programming expertise in a Unix environment with track record of contributions to open source projects on platforms such as GitHub.  

  • Critical thinking skills and the ability to embrace change and seek creative solutions to challenges. 

  • Introduce pioneering and ground-breaking ideas. 

  • Ability to coordinate, plan and prioritize tasks or projects. 

  • Uphold the highest ethical and scientific standards. 


Desirable Criteria 

  • Experience in the biological interpretation of single-cell data in the context of pathways, networks and gene regulatory complexes. 

  • Expertise in the development of novel statistical approaches for the analysis of biological data.  

  • Expertise in using and customising the Galaxy bioinformatics platform for use in single-cell analysis. 

  • Well networked within external bioinformatics and oncology communities.  

  • An excellent publication track record.  


Locations: Cambridge UK

Salary: Competitive + Excellent Benefits

Why AstraZeneca?

At AstraZeneca we’re dedicated to being a Great Place to Work. Where you are empowered to push the boundaries of science and unleash your entrepreneurial spirit. There’s no better place to make a difference to medicine, patients and society. An inclusive culture that champions diversity and collaboration, and always committed to lifelong learning, growth and development. We’re on an exciting journey to pioneer the future of healthcare.

So, what’s next?

  • Are you already imagining yourself joining our team? Good, because we can’t wait to hear from you.

  • Are you ready to bring new ideas and fresh thinking to the table? Brilliant! We have one seat available and we hope it’s yours.

  • If you’re curious to know more then please reach out to Sophie Halpin. We welcome your application, no later than the 20th April 2022

As part of the application process for some roles at AstraZeneca, candidates may be asked to complete a series of online games, created by pymetrics, to assess certain candidate qualities to help evaluate potential match for the position. If the pymetrics process applies to this role, you will receive an email invitation with additional information following application. Once completed AZ will automatically receive your results - pymetrics will not be used solely in our decision-making process but will help us gather additional insight.

Where can I find out more?

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