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    Opportunity: Postdoctoral Fellow -- Bioinformatician, Computational Biology with experience in metabolomics data analysis @ IARC/WHO -- Lyon, France
    Submitted by Reza Salek; posted on Thursday, February 06, 2020


    The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) is the specialized cancer agency of the World Health Organization ( The objective of the IARC is to promote international collaboration in cancer research. The Agency is inter-disciplinary, bringing together skills in epidemiology, laboratory sciences, and biostatistics to identify the causes of cancer so that preventive measures may be adopted and the burden of disease and associated suffering reduced. The research aim of the Biomarkers Group is to develop new approaches to identify, validate and implement biomarkers, to better understand the relationship of nutrition, environmental, and lifestyle factors (the exposome) with carcinogenesis. This position involves applying computational and high-resolution mass spectrometry for the analysis of biofluid samples to identify new biomarkers of exposure, food intake and of gut microbiota functions and to explore mechanisms linking them with cancer.


    This postdoctoral scientist opportunity is immediately available within the Group, under the supervision of Dr Reza Salek, to develop informatics solutions. Familiarity with metabolomic data analysis approaches is essential and knowledge of omics data integration (implementing existing methods/solutions) and the willingness to tackle complex biological questions would be advantageous. The main objective is to develop a novel computational framework to integrate different knowledge-based metabolic computational networks (genome-scale metabolic networks, MS/MS similarity network, chemical similarity). This is an ANR-DFG funded project, across four different closely collaborating groups (IARC- France, IPB-Halle-Germany- France, INRA and Helmholtz Zentrum München -Germany). We have also obtained a plethora of cancer biofluid metabolomics data using high-resolution mass spectrometry (LC-MS) from large cohort studies, and we aim to validate the tools and to help interpret and publish the findings.


    Candidates should hold a recent doctoral degree in a relevant field, be ambitious, self-motivated, very independent, with excellent English skills, and have a track record of productivity. The Biomarkers Group is composed of 18 persons highly skilled in the application of metabolomics to cohort studies and clinical trials. The Biomarkers Group laboratory is equipped with state-of-the-art high and low-resolution mass spectrometers.

    Skills required:
    • Candidates should have, ideally, a background in MS-based metabolomics data analysis.
    • Priority will be given to candidates with computational biology, bioinformatics or biostatistics degree or skills.
    • Candidates with a background in Life sciences who have a strong working informatic knowledge on R or Python with a keen interest in pursuing computational projects are welcome.
    • Candidates highly motivated to be in an English-speaking multinational team and environment are strongly encouraged to apply.


    • Interest in complex problem solving such analyzing and integrating multi-omics data using computational and statistical approaches (mainly implementation of existing methods)
    • Understanding of genome-scale metabolic models
    • Experience in setting up workflow and data analysis pipelines within HPC environment and familiar with Nextflow, Galaxy or common workflow environments and Docker technologies


    This postdoctoral opportunity is initially for one year (project funding for 3 years and up to a maximum of 5 years) with the possibility of renewal, and is suitable for candidates who have completed a Ph.D., or who have acquired equivalent training. The IARC stipend is currently €2,820 per month (Net/month). The cost of travel for the Postdoctoral Scientist, and in certain circumstances for dependents, will be met, a dependent's allowance paid, and health insurance covered. IARC welcomes around 40 postdoctoral scientists, at any one time, distributed across its sixteen research groups. Postdoctoral scientists at IARC have access to a wide spectrum of scientific disciplines and to a unique network of collaborators across the world.


    Lyon, France


    The cost of travel for the Postdoctoral Scientist, and in certain circumstances for dependents, will be met, a dependent's allowance paid, and health insurance covered.


    Applicants should send a CV, including a list of publications and a description of previous research experience, as well as the names and addresses of two academic referees, to:

    Dr. Reza Salek
    Biomarkers Group, Section of Nutrition and Metabolism
    International Agency for Research on Cancer
    150 Cours Albert-Thomas, 69008 Lyon, France
    email: Salekr[at]


    Until position is filled


    Applications from women and from nationals from low and middle-income countries are particularly encouraged. Compared with traditional postdoctoral fellowships, IARC Postdoctoral Fellows have many opportunities to establish an international network, become involved in multinational studies and consortia, and meet renowned researchers who are collaborating with or working at IARC. The programme is designed to provide young researchers with a strong foundation for a career in cancer research.

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