Ontario Institute for Cancer Research



, Ontario


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678 days ago Apply now

Position: Postdoctoral Fellow in Computational Genomics

Site: MaRS Centre, Toronto

Department: Computational Biology

Reports To: Shraddha Pai

Salary: Commensurate with level of experience

Hours: 35 hours/week Status: Full-time, Temporary (1-year contract)

The Ontario Institute for Cancer Research (OICR) is seeking a dynamic, collaborative postdoctoral fellow to join a team developing computational algorithms for cancer drug target prioritization using genomics, biological networks, and systems medicine-based approaches.

The goal of the project is to create an algorithm to prioritize lead molecules for drug targeting by integrating prior ‘omic and non-‘omic knowledge to maximize functional relevance and minimize off-target effects. The algorithm will use network-based approaches, and will incorporate genomic prior knowledge such as tissue-specific transcriptomic and proteomic profiles, known oncogenic mutations, and target druggability, as well as non-‘omic sources such as reports of adverse drug reactions. The successful candidate will lead method development, benchmarking for method optimization, and manuscript writing of results. Prioritized molecules will be experimentally verified by members of the team from OICR’s Drug Discovery group.

The Pai Lab at the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research develops computational methods for precision medicine, with a focus on network and systems medicine. The project is a collaboration between the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research’s Adaptive Oncology and Drug Discovery teams, which includes the labs of Rima Al-Awar, Richard Marcellus, Lincoln Stein and Shraddha Pai. While this posting is for a one year initial contract, a contract extension for a second year is a strong possibility.

The successful candidate will gain the experience of working in an interdisciplinary team of computational biologists and pharmacologists, and be exposed to the process of drug discovery technology development. The candidate will be part of the rich scientific environment of the OICR, with opportunities for development of technical, leadership, and entrepreneurial skills. The candidate will also have the opportunity to learn about the space for biomedical technology development for commercialization.

The MaRS Centre has a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy in place that requires proof of full COVID-19 vaccination or proof of a medical exemption issued pursuant to the Government of Ontario guidelines. Accordingly, as a condition of employment, new employees who are required to work on-site are required to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 subject to the duty to accommodate on the basis of protected grounds pursuant to the Ontario Human Rights Code.

Fully vaccinated is defined as having received all of the required doses of a Health Canada approved vaccine and having received the final dose at least 14 days before your employment start date.

As described above, the requirement to be fully vaccinated is subject to the Ontario Human Rights Code. If the candidate is unable to receive the COVID-19 vaccine for a reason protected by the Code, requests for accommodation from the vaccine policy will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

To learn more about working at OICR, visit our career page.

  • Developing the algorithm for target prioritization scheme by integrating multi-modal genomic and pharmacological data;
  • Optimizing the method using benchmark data;
  • Identifying prioritized drug target molecules for experimental verification;
  • Critically evaluating similar approaches in the field, for algorithm refinement (e.g., through literature search);
  • Coordinating with Adaptive Oncology and Drug Discovery team members to communicate results and respond to feedback;
  • Summarizing results for presentations at internal and external meetings; and
  • Manuscript writing.
  • PhD degree in bioinformatics and/or computer science;
  • Experience with genomics required;
  • Experience with network-based approaches an asset (e.g., label propagation);
  • Excellent communication skills; and
  • Ability to thrive in a collaborative, team-based environment.
Additional Information:

OICR is a collaborative, not-for-profit research institute accelerating the development of new cancer research discoveries for patients around the world while maximizing the economic benefit of this research for the people of Ontario. We are dedicated professionals who bring expertise to each of our roles. We are looking for individuals who share our values of excellence, innovation, collaboration, impact, responsibility and community.

Launched in December 2005, OICR is an independent institute funded by the Government of Ontario through the Ministry of Colleges and Universities.

For more information about OICR, please visit the website at

CLOSING DATE: Until Filled

OICR is committed to fostering a climate of equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility. This commitment is central to, and mutually supportive of, our research excellence mandate. We welcome and respect the diversity of all members of our community and we support an inclusive culture for all. We welcome all applicants, and encourage applications from racialized persons, Indigenous Peoples, women, persons with disabilities, LGBTQ2S persons, and others who may contribute to furthering a diversity of ideas within our community. OICR is committed to fair assessment of a candidate’s abilities, and consideration for diversity of thought, method, and experience. Providing an accessible workplace and recruitment process is important to us, as described in our Accessibility Plan ( Should you require accommodation during any stage in the recruitment process, please contact Information received related to accommodation will be handled confidentially.

The Ontario Institute for Cancer Research thanks all applicants. However, only those under consideration will be contacted.

Resume Format: If you elect to apply, you will need a text or HTML version of your resume so that you can cut and paste it into the application box provided. Before you submit the completed application, you will be asked to attach one or two files to your application. Please attach your resume as a .pdf or .doc file.


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