The Brandeis GPS blog

Insights on online learning, tips for finding balance, and news and updates from Brandeis GPS

Tag: Bioinformatics (page 1 of 2)

Looking back: the growth of Python

Since Guido van Rossum first released Python to the public in 1991, it has become one of the fastest growing major programming languages and established itself as the defacto language among varied scientific communities.

Python is particularly valuable to today’s forward-thinking industries and technologies, including data science and machine learning. Its intuitive platform makes it appealing for new programmers, yet it can also serve as a tool for more complex purposes.

Some of the features of Python include:

  • Minimal keywords, simple structure, and a clearly defined syntax
  • Code that is much shorter than former industry-leader JavaScript
  • A broad standard library that is portable and compatible on a number of hardware platforms
  • A mode allowing interactive testing and debugging of pieces of code
  • Tool customization for efficiency using added low-level modules

Master Python Programming

Brandeis GPS offers multiple online courses that teach the programming language specific to certain industries: Python Programming (FinTech), Bioinformatics Scripting and Python Programming (Bioinformatics), and Python for Robotics and AI  (Robotics). All three courses are available for professional development as long as students can demonstrate previous basic experience with a programming language (or undergraduate-level coursework).

Brandeis GPS offers rolling admission to our 12 fully-online master’s degree programs, so you can apply and be accepted at any time. However, we do have recommended deadlines if you are seeking admission for a specific term. The deadline to apply to our Spring 1 session is Wednesday, December 19. You can apply here. Those interested in taking a course who do not yet wish to pursue a full master’s degree can still take up to two online courses without officially enrolling.

To learn more about GPS courses or graduate programs, check out our website or contact gps@brandeis.edu or 781-736-8787.

Molecular Biology, Genetics, and Disease

Biotechnology and pharmaceutical organizations are increasingly viewing bioinformatics as an integral part of their research processes. Biomedical industries are seeking to make use of vast amounts of genomic data to produce complex and accurate biological models.

Brandeis GPS will be offering Molecular Biology, Genetics, and Disease  as a part-time, fully online course this October. The 10-week course will introduce students to the basic concepts of molecular, cell, and developmental biology. It will cover classic genetics, from Mendelian inheritance to quantitative and complex traits, associations and population genetics. It will address the anatomy and function of genomes from humans and model organisms. Using the Human Genome Projects as an example, students will learn sequencing and mapping technologies. Basic sequence analysis methods will be introduced, along with techniques to navigate genome browsers and other relevant databases.

At the end of the course, students will be able to:

  • Navigate genome browsers and databases relevant to genetics and genomics.
  • Analyze pedigrees and apply genetics to identify disease associations.
  • Use techniques of physical and genetic mapping and sequencing.
  • Use comparative genomics to detect homologous sequences within and between organisms and to define evolutionary relationships.
  • Predict possible consequences of mutations and genetic variation within and outside of genes.
  • Use examples from developmental biology, human disease and immunology to illustrate genetic control mechanisms and mutations.

At Brandeis GPS, you can take up to two courses before enrolling in one of our 12 online master’s degrees. If you’re interested in exploring the MS in Bioinformatics, or would like to explore molecular biology to fill a bioinformatics skills gap, contact the  GPS office for more information or to request a syllabus: 781-736-8787, gps@brandeis.edu, or submit your information.

Right kind of graduate study can give current biotech staff boost we seek

In their June 4 op-ed, Mayor Marty Walsh and Vertex Pharmaceuticals President, CEO and Chairman Dr. Jeffrey Leiden make a compelling case for strengthening the biotech workforce pipeline in Massachusetts. Establishing strong public-private partnerships with Boston Public Schools is a necessary strategy for developing and retaining young talent for the state’s growing biopharmaceutical sector.

It is equally important, however, that we not overlook alternative pipelines for workforce development. Professional master’s degrees can help research assistants, engineers, lab technicians and other qualified biotech professionals transition into the more advanced bioinformatics positions that Massachusetts relies on to remain competitive.

As we continue prioritizing investments in economic growth and innovation, we must remember that there is more than one educational pathway toward closing the biopharma skills gap. The right type of graduate education can equip professionals who already have a foothold in the industry with the technology and expertise to advance their careers, producing a new wave of talented employees who can take on this complex and incredibly important work.

 

This letter first appeared in the Boston Globe on June 10.

SPOTLIGHT ON JOBS: HARVARD SCHOOL OF PUBLIC HEALTH

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Members of the Brandeis GPS Community may submit job postings from within their industries to advertise exclusively to our community. This is a great way to further connect and seek out opportunities as they come up. If you are interested in posting an opportunity, please complete the following form found here.

Where: Work can be done remotely, but the RA should be available to meet in person at the Longwood medical campus at least once a week.

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GPS student wins big at Brandeis Innovation’s SPARKTank competition

Brandeis Bioinformatics student Donald Son and his team of entrepreneurs took third place in last Sunday’s university-wide SPARKTank competition, an annual live-pitch event hosted by Brandeis Innovation.

Competing against 12 other groups seeking seed funding to bring their startups to market, Son’s team received $10,000 to further their work on Green Herb Analytics (HerbDx). The California-based facility uses analytical chemistry, software integration and medicinal cannabinoid biology to provide quality assurance lab testing and ensure that the product entering the market is safe for human consumption. The startup also seeks to establish an innovative, cutting-edge brand with affordable prices.

While Son himself does not use cannabis, he has a personal connection to unregulated supplements and medicines and their impact on public health.

Brandeis Innovation SPARKTank - Brandeis GPS Online Education - Brandeis GPS Blog“I take herbs to manage my chronic fatigue syndrome and was initially concerned about what I was putting into my body,” said Son. “During my own research, I came across cannabis just as it was being voted on for recreational use in California. I felt the need to ensure the safety of this product to the consumer.”

HerbDx plans to put its seed funding toward a small lab space, a mass spectrometer to optimize pesticide testing, and to advance production and marketing efforts. Outreach efforts will include an increased digital and social media presence, partnerships with special interest groups, and visibility at trade shows and conferences.

About SPARKTank
SPARKTank is a live pitch event where Brandeis entrepreneurs compete for seed funding in front of a live audience. Thirteen teams comprised of Brandeis students, faculty and staff pitched their innovative ideas to a panel of industry judges with the hopes of receiving a portion of the $50,000 grant pool. The pitches included startups, technologies and entrepreneurial ventures, which demonstrated the extensive breadth of entrepreneurial spirit at Brandeis University.

The Best Jobs for Life-Work Balance

Glassdoor, a popular jobs and recruitment website, recently released a crowd-sourced list of best jobs for achieving work-life balance. Many of the positions in the Glassdoor list directly correspond to the industry-driven master’s degrees offered at GPS. Among the 29 positions profiled include:

1. Lab Assistant
2. Creative Manager
3. Computer Programmer
4. Marketing Coordinator
5. Data Analyst
6. Content Manager
7. Web Designer
8. Social Media Manager
9. Scrum Master
10. Marketing Analyst
11. Devops Engineer
12. Mobile Developer
13. User Interface Designer
14. Data Scientist
15. User Experience Designer

Whether you currently hold one of the positions above or are interested in advancing into a similar job, you’re probably looking to achieve balance in all areas of your life. For those seeking to pursue a graduate degree, Brandeis GPS fosters a community that is mindful of the multiple demands facing adult learners and while offering the rigorous standards of excellence that makes Brandeis one of the top universities in the country.

SPOTLIGHT ON JOBS: Pfizer Inc.

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Members of the Brandeis GPS Community may submit job postings from within their industries to advertise exclusively to our community. This is a great way to further connect and seek out opportunities as they come up. If you are interested in posting an opportunity, please complete the following form found here.

Where: Pfizer Inc: Cambridge, MA

Position: Several Positions available in Human Genetics and Computational Biomedicine

The advance of human genetics in recent years driven by the large scale human genome-sequencing and genome-wide association in multiple disease areas has brought the research community and pharmaceutical industry an unprecedented opportunity to utilize this information and technology to facilitate innovative drug discovery and development. Pfizer has now reached a key point at which human genetics is sufficiently mature to aid the drug discovery process in several important areas.

Inflammatory and autoimmune diseases and Neuroscience stand out as areas where genetic research has been successful, suggesting that increased emphasis and resource may yield ever more safe and efficacious precision medicines. A combination of genetic epidemiology and functional genomics will facilitate our ability to identify mechanisms, indications, patients and biomarkers, all of which would be guided by an evidence base in humans.

Opportunities also exist to integrate human genetics with other types of data measured in clinical research such as gene expression via RNAseq, protein measurements in peripheral blood, structural and functional brain imaging, and immune cell responses to treatment. This will enable holistic view of biomarker response. Carefully designed and implemented pharmacogenetic studies of drug responses in clinical trials could provide novel mechanistic learnings to support combination therapy or biomarkers for patient stratification.

Pfizer is looking for experts in human genetics with sound knowledge of applying human genetics and genomics as tools for target discovery/validation, biomarker/indication identification, patient stratification through genetic association analyses and functional biology studies.

 

Click here to view further details on this opportunity!

Any further questions on the position may be directed to Megan Harrigan at megan.harrigan@pfizer.com.

Interested candidates are asked to submit a resume/cv and cover letter through the Pfizer online portal here.

Please make sure to reference seeing this position through the Brandeis GPS job spotlight post.

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SPOTLIGHT ON JOBS: GeneLab at NASA-Ames Research Center

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Members of the Brandeis GPS Community may submit job postings from within their industries to advertise exclusively to our community. This is a great way to further connect and seek out opportunities as they come up. If you are interested in posting an opportunity, please complete the following form found here.

Where: This position is with GeneLab at NASA-Ames Research Center in Mountain View, CA. Applicants interested in the position will work with the Wyle Recruiting Agency.

Position: GeneLab Data Curator

The purpose of this position is to provide the GeneLab Project with data acquisition, curation and system operations support. The incumbent will support the lead Bioinformatician in supporting and coordinating bioinformatics efforts, working with the user community and collaborators (within NASA, academia and industry) for GeneLab. They will provide support to the omics and bioinformatics community for the software development team. Incumbent will perform other duties and assignments as required.

Responsibilities:

The incumbent shall have as a minimum a BS/BE with 3+ years experience or Masters with 0-2 years experience in bio-informatics, computational biology, bio-statistics, molecular biology, bio-chemistry, bio-engineering or related fields.

 

Click here to view further details on this opportunity!

To receive full consideration for this position, candidates are asked to submit a Resume/CV, Cover Letter and References through the recruiting agency’s online portal here.

Please make sure to reference seeing this position through the Brandeis GPS job spotlight post.

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SPOTLIGHT ON JOBS: UNH and NSRDEC

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Members of the Brandeis GPS Community may submit job postings from within their industries to advertise exclusively to our community. This is a great way to further connect and seek out opportunities as they come up. If you are interested in posting an opportunity, please complete the following form found here.

Where: University of New Hampshire at Manchester

About: UNH Manchester, the University’s urban, commuter campus, serves New Hampshire’s largest, most diverse, and rapidly growing community. The College actively creates and nurtures a dynamic learning environment in which qualified individuals of differing perspectives, life experiences, and cultural backgrounds pursue academic goals with a mutual respect and shared spirit of inquiry. For more information about UNH Manchester, please visit: http://www.manchester.unh.edu.

PositionInstructional Designer

Under the general direction of the Manager of Instructional Design and Development, consult with faculty to propose and explore instructional technology solutions based upon sound instructional design principles and practices to address the learning outcomes for new and existing courses.

As part of the Instructional Design and Development Team and other teams across Academic Technology, Academic Affairs, and other strategic partners, provide planning, implementation and ongoing support for new and existing eLearning services. This may include, but is not limited to, best practices related to developing and teaching online and hybrid courses.

Participate in the development and delivery of faculty development and support programs. Build constructive relationships with faculty and staff in academic departments adopting new teaching strategies and technologies.

Minimum Requirements: 

  • Bachelor’s degree in education, instructional design, educational or information technology or related field and four years experience in instructional design or instructional technology field, Associate’s and six years, OR combination of education and experience equal to eight years.
  • Good organizational skills and effective oral and written communication skills.

Desired Qualifications: 

  • Masters degree in instructional design, education technology, education, or related field.
  • Experience teaching online
  • Proven expertise in Canvas or similar Learning Management System.
  • Ability to work independently and with limited supervision.
  • Proven expertise in design and delivery of faculty development programs, client support, and evaluation of new instructional technologies.
  • Position assumes an ability to build constructive relationships with faculty and instructional staff and to help them integrate technology into the teaching/learning process.
  • Experience working in higher education.
  • Working knowledge of social media.
  • Working knowledge of Open Educational Resources.
  • Familiarity with HTML.

To receive full consideration for this position, in addition to completing the required on-line application form, please be prepared to submit: resume and cover letter.

Additional optional documents: contact information for three (3) professional references.  

This is a two year term position with a possibility of continuation. This position is located on the UNH Manchester campus. Some travel is required to the Durham and Concord campuses.

Please contact Scott Kimball, scott.kimball@unh.edu, with questions regarding this position.

 

 

 


 

 

Where: Nutrient Analysis Laboratory, Combat Feeding Directorate (CFD) at US Army Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center in Natick, MA

About: The US Army Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center(NSRDEC) is a Customer-Driven, Customer-Focused organization, and is internationally known as a preeminent provider of research, development, engineering and integration services in the areas of soldier and squad protection and systems integration, military rations and field feeding equipment, military parachuting and airdrop systems, and expeditionary basing. Through our research in areas such as materials sciences, biochemistry, human performance and human sciences; technology development and integration; and systems engineering, product development and support the NSRDEC plays a vital role in maximizing the effectiveness of America’s military. Help shape our future to become the Leader in Empowering the World’s Most Capable Soldiers.

Position: Junior Chemist position and Senior Chemist Position

The senior chemist will serve as the NAL Manager responsible for equipping the lab, developing and validating test methodology for nutrient analysis, and overseeing the work of the junior chemist. This incumbent should have experience using instrumentation such as gas and liquid chromatography, mass spectrometry, Kjeldahl and Soxlet, and ideally would have experience analyzing nutrients in food.

The junior chemist will be conducting nutrient analysis on a regular basis once protocols are established and validated.  Assignments will likewise require the use of analytical instruments in the evaluation of macro and micro nutrients in food, and incumbent should have experience using such instrumentation.

 

View qualifications for the Junior Chemist Position Here

View qualifications for the Senior Chemist Position Here

The application deadline for these positions is November 16th.

Please apply using the links above and make sure to reference seeing this position through the Brandeis GPS job spotlight post.

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SPOTLIGHT ON JOBS: MGH

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Members of the Brandeis GPS Community may submit job postings from within their industries to advertise exclusively to our community. This is a great way to further connect and seek out opportunities as they come up. If you are interested in posting an opportunity, please complete the following form found here.

WhereMassachusetts General Hospital (MGH), Division of Gynecologic Oncology

About: The Center for Gynecologic Oncology provides individualized, compassionate care and the most advanced treatments for women with all gynecologic cancers, including:

Position: Part-Time Statistical Programmer/Data Analyst

The Division of Gynecologic Oncology at the Massachusetts General Hospital is looking for a part time statistical programmer/data analyst to assist with programming for grant-funded projects investigating quality of health care, primarily focusing on care for cancer patients.

  • This individual will create data sets, create statistical programs and algorithms, conduct statistical analyses, and interact with organizations such as health insurance companies that provide data.
  • Typical activities involve analyses of large-scale, longitudinal data sets containing health-related information obtained from Medicare, insurance companies, and other sources.
  • Activities may also involve the creation of database management systems for projects that involve primary data collection.
  • For all projects, information from multiple data sources and files are typically merged to create analytic data sets. Individual will be responsible for merging data files, documenting steps taken to merge files, documenting any new variables created for analysis, and creating statistical programs and algorithms needed for analysis.
  • Once analysis goals are set, the Data Analyst will conduct analyses under direction of the project Principal Investigator and other Co-investigators, but will make independent decisions about how to implement analysis most effectively and accurately and how to report results.
  • Additionally, the analyst ensures that tables, figures and text of reports accurately reflect the results of the analysis.
  • The job offers the opportunity for one-to-one mentoring, authorship in peer-reviewed studies, and direct exposure to academic medicine.

Requirements: 

  •   At least 2 years of experience in SAS programming, experience with other languages (e.g., STATA)
  •  The ideal candidate will have a masters or higher in biostatistics and experience analyzing Medicare and/or other health insurance claims datasets.

 

Interested candidates should send their resume and cover letter to Alejandro Rauh-Hain at jrauh-hain@partners.org.

Make sure to reference seeing this position through the Brandeis GPS job spotlight post.

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