Research Fellow of Statistical Genomics

Updated: 2 months ago
Job Type: FullTime
Deadline: 03 Jun 2021

Do you want to contribute to highly innovative medical research?

We seek a new researcher who will work in the psychiatric genetics & pharmacogenetics working group, University of Tartu, led by Prof Lili Milani and Associate Professor of neuropsychiatric genetics Kelli Lehto. The main goal of the research activities in the group is to improve the understanding of the influence of genetic background on causes and consequences of illness and drug response, thus in the long run contributing to the implementation of personalized medicine in Estonia and globally. Our current focus is on psychiatric disorders, cardiovascular diseases, and treatment outcomes, incl. side-effects of medicines. We are also exploring the effect of genetic variants in drug targets.

The research will be part of several large collaborative projects, including EU funded projects called CoMorMent (Predicting comorbid cardiovascular disease in individuals with mental disorder by decoding disease mechanisms), PRECISE4Q (Personalised Medicine by Predictive Modelling in Stroke for better Quality of Life) as well as our own research projects (PRG184 Role of Rare and Common Genetic Variants in Adverse Drug Reactions, Development of My Health Study for data collection and feedback of personalized health information). Our research group investigates the effects of rare and common genetic variants on diseases, their comorbidities, and drug response. For example, to define how biobank participants respond to treatment, we are mining their electronic health records (EHR) for adverse drug reaction diagnoses, discontinuation of treatment, or drug switching as proxies for inappropriate drug response.

Additional information about the group and ongoing projects can be found at

Your mission

We seek an experienced and enthusiastic statistician to join our team. We have a wealth of genetic and longitudinal health data from 200,000 biobank participants, which includes over 10 years of health records on diseases, medications, medical procedures and full free-text records that are currently being explored and structured for our research purposes. We need a professional statistician or data scientist to maximize the utility of the available data, and to identify new associations that could help improve future health care. The candidate should be enthusiastic about advancing knowledge on the genetics and comorbidities of psychiatric and cardiovascular disorders, and how different medications affect the occurrence and progression of these disorders. The successful applicant who joins our team will work both independently and with our collaborators to conduct research on the genomics of psychiatric disorders and cardiovascular disease by in depth analysis of different layers of health and genomics data, and combining these with publicly available functional genomics data, to make new discoveries that could ultimately improve people’s lives.

Duties and responsibilities

Research, development and creative activities

  • Participation in RDC activities under the supervision of a professor or associate professor and independently.
  • Internationally recognised research in five years at least in the volume equivalent to that of 1.5 doctoral thesis.
  • Development of skills necessary for RDC activities, and professional development.
  • Participation in the governance and institutional development of the university and social and public activities

  • Participation in the work of the university’s decision-making bodies is recommended.
  • Popularisation of the specialisation.
  • See also job description .

    Required qualifications

    PhD or an equivalent qualification.

    See also requirements for teaching and research staff .

    Required experience

    Research, development and creative activities

  • Ability to participate in organising RDC activities in the specialisation.
  • Internationally recognised professional research, the volume of which so far is equivalent to that of at least one doctoral thesis.
  • Long-term experience with genome-wide association analyses and list of relevant publications.
  • Previous experience with performing statistical analysis on health data (e.g. electronic health records) and estimating disease risks.
  • Previous experience with analysing genetics of quantitative traits (e.g. eQTL-ID, sQTL-ID).
  • Command of at least one programming language (R, Python, etc.).

  • Required language skills

    Excellent command of the English language is required. Estonian is recommended but not required. According to the Language Act, academic staff with foreign citizenship working in Estonia must have acquired at least B1-level Estonian language skills after five years of work. The Centre for Professional Development offers foreigners and their family members the opportunity to participate in Estonian language courses.

    Starting at 01.08.2021.

    Workload: 1,00.

    Salary: Remuneration according to the UT Salary Rules, starting from 2500 euros (gross) per month.

    See also UT salary rules .

    Additional info

    Prof Lili Milani, , +372 737 4039.

    What do we offer?

    A creative and inspiring environment full of expertise and curiosity. By joining our team, you will work with top scientist in the area of psychiatric genetics and pharmacogenetics, and participate in designing and implementing personalised medicine in Estonia.

    Contract type - Full time (part-time option available upon agreement).

    City – Tartu (partial home office available upon agreement).

    Application documents

    In order to be considered for the position, the candidate must submit to the UT Human Resources Office (email: ; postal address: 18 Ülikooli St, Tartu 50090 ESTONIA; employees of the UT should submit their documents via intranet ) following documents:

  • a letter of application to the Rector - in the application, the candidate has to outline if they are willing to work part-time or full-time, which courses they are qualified to teach and what kind of teaching experience they have in the field;
  • a curriculum vitae  in the established format,
  • a list of research publications (if necessary, enclosing copies or offprints of more important publications),
  • a copy of a document (including its annexes) which shows the candidate to hold the required qualification (with authorized translation into Estonian, English or Russian if the credential is not in Estonian, English, Russian, Finnish, Swedish, French, Italian, Ukrainian and Belarussian languages). A candidate can be required to submit the original or a certified copy of the document (including its annexes) showing the candidate to hold the required qualification. If the candidate has acquired the higher education in question abroad, he or she may be required to submit an assessment issued by the Academic Recognition Information Centre  (the Estonian ENIC/NARIC) of his or her qualification in respect of the qualification requirements for the position;
  • other materials considered relevant by the candidate (a list of such materials must be included in the application or annexed to it).
  • Number of copies: 1

    See also Application documents and notification of results

    Web site for additional job details

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