Research Scientist (Microbial Genomic Epidemiology/ Bioinformatics)

Applications Close: 13 June 2023

Salary: £33,050 to £40,750 per annum depending on qualifications and experience

Contract Length: Full time, 54 months

We’re looking for a Research Scientist to join the group of Professor Alison Mather.

The Quadram Institute provides a vibrant and exciting setting composed of multiple research teams working on microbial (meta)genomics, molecular epidemiology, microbial communities, and food science.

We offer the chance to work with world leading, cutting edge technologies both in microbiology and computational biology and give you the opportunity to broaden your skills using open-source technologies within a bioinformatics context, and bringing together biological, epidemiological and bioinformatics data. You will gain experience of working with Big Data, cloud computing, and have the opportunity to publish excellent science in leading peer-reviewed journals.


The post holder will join a fun, international and supportive group with expertise in bioinformatics, microbiology, molecular ecology and epidemiology. We work to understand the evolution, origins and transmission of foodborne bacteria, with a focus on bacteria that are resistant to antimicrobial drugs. Work in our group includes that on organisms important for food safety and food spoilage, including Salmonella, E. coli, Vibrio, Klebsiella, Pseudomonas, Yersinia enterocolitica, and as well as the use of metagenomics to understand the wider microbial communities in which these organisms exist. We work with many external collaborators, including academics, regulatory bodies and public health laboratories (both animal and human) in the UK and abroad.

This position will entail working on microbial genomes and metagenomes obtained from across the One Health spectrum (humans, food, animals, the environment) to address key questions such as the relative contribution from different sources to the antimicrobial resistance and pathogen burden in humans. This will be achieved using a combination of approaches, including short- and long-read whole (meta)genome sequencing, bioinformatics analyses of large datasets and statistical/epidemiological analyses.

The role

The successful post holder will analyse and interpret existing large collections of microbial whole-genome and metagenome sequence data from Illumina and Oxford Nanopore technologies using various bioinformatics approaches to address the project aims. The post holder will occasionally present research findings at project meetings, scientific conferences and outreach/training events. There is scope to develop new projects within the strategic remit of microbial food safety and food spoilage, and collaborate with other groups (including a dedicated team of bioinformaticians).

The post holder will also lead and/or contribute to the preparation of written reports and research publications and present research findings at project meetings, scientific conferences and outreach/translation events. They will contribute to the smooth running of the group, including the effective use of resources, supervision of visitors to the laboratory and assisting with training others, including postgraduate students, and overall encouraging scientific excellence.

The ideal candidate

Candidates should have a PhD in a relevant subject (e.g. Computational Biology, Microbiology, Molecular Genetics, Bioinformatics, Epidemiology or related discipline), and experience in analysing microbial sequencing data. The candidate must value teamwork and collaboration, be able to work independently, and have excellent communication and interpersonal skills.

Additional information

Salary on appointment will be within the range £33,050 to £40,750 per annum depending on qualifications and experience. This is a full-time post for a contract of 54 months to end 31 March 2028.

For further information and details of how to apply, please visit the HR website or contact the Human Resources team on 01603 450814 or quoting reference 1004467.

We are committed to equal opportunities and welcome applications from all sectors of society.  The Institute supports equality of opportunity within the workplace and expects all employees to share and display these values.  To support our commitment, we have a range of family, faith and diversity friendly working arrangements to help all staff achieve excellence in their area of work.

As a Disability Confident employer, we guarantee to offer an interview to all disabled applicants who meet the essential criteria for this vacancy.

About the Quadram Institute

The Quadram Institute is a new interdisciplinary research institute dedicated to understanding how food and microbes interact to promote health and prevent disease. Its mission is to deliver healthier lives through innovation in gut health, microbiology and food. A partnership between Quadram Institute Bioscience, the University of East Anglia, the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital and BBSRC, it brings together scientists and clinicians in a state-of-the-art building on the Norwich Research Park. This is one of Europe’s largest centres of life sciences and home of the John Innes Centre and The Earlham Institute.

The closing date for applications will be 13 June 2023

The Quadram Institute Bioscience is a registered charity (No. 1058499) and is an Equal Opportunities Employer.