Bioinformatics Consultant

Foundation for the NIH
Job Location
Bethesda, MD


Job Description

The Foundation for the National Institutes of Health (FNIH) is seeking a bioinformatics and data management consultant to assist in evaluating and managing the construction of a large-scale, public, web-based “information portal” to support effective identification and validation of new drug targets in Type 2 diabetes.

The portal is being developed through an exciting new public-private biomedical research collaboration, the Accelerating Medicines Partnership (AMP), which is being managed by the FNIH and involves the NIH, FDA, and multiple pharmaceutical companies. The AMP Type 2 Diabetes (T2D) Initiative seeks to create an integrated database of DNA sequence, functional genomic, epigenomic, and clinical data from existing studies on T2D and its cardiac and renal complications across roughly 100,000 – 150,000 individuals. The knowledge portal will house the dataset(s) and analytical tools to query and mine the data and will be publicly accessible for interrogation by academic and industry researchers. The project will also seek to collect new data and execute specific targeted data analyses, the results of which will be added to the portal. The end goal will be to have a powerful, publicly available tool that provides access to a comprehensive and dynamic database that will facilitate the rational identification and validation of effective and successful T2D drug candidates and related research objectives.

The Bioinformatics Consultant will provide expert advice and support to the FNIH and the AMP Type 2 Diabetes Steering Committee on the information technology aspects of creating the portal, including vendor and partner selection for the design, build, test, and maintenance phases of portal development.


The consultant will:
- Assist with the review of proposals received in response to the FNIH Accelerating Medicines Partnership Type 2 Diabetes (T2D) Requests for Proposals (RFPs): for the design and build of the AMP T2D Knowledge Portal with genetics data.
- Help FNIH assess the ongoing progress of the development of the portal, including database and communications, as well as user interface aspects of the design.
- Interact with a multi-stakeholder project team including clinicians, statisticians and computer scientists from the academic, government, and private sectors.
- Advise FNIH and its grantees on expanding the portal functionality to answer various gene variant-related questions around T2D risk and protection, eQTLs in relevant tissues, T2D-related complications, and epigenetics.


- Ph.D. in computer science, database/systems engineering, bioinformatics, or equivalent experience.
- The consultant’s main areas of technical expertise should include at least 5 years of experience in the following:
o working with different types of human genetic and phenotypic data (GWAS, array data, data from genome and exome sequencing);
o database and systems design, particularly working with large volumes of clinical and medical data and automated query and statistical data analysis capabilities;
o hands-on bioinformatics analysis in collaboration with other scientists;
o handling heterogeneous, multi-source data and prior experience in structuring and managing federated database approaches is highly desirable;
o evaluating high level design choices and their relationship to work estimates and timelines, and providing technical perspective on budget and delivery milestones; and
o working with Unix/Linux interfaces and application programming interfaces (APIs).

Knowledge of policies related to human subject clinical trial issues is strongly preferred. Familiarity with international clinical data sharing environments is considered a plus. Familiarity with diabetes data is considered a plus. Knowledge of the industrial or government scientific research processes and/or biomedical grant making is considered a plus

The consultant will be under contract with the FNIH and will work under the direction of the Senior Scientific Program Manager for Metabolic Disorders and stay in close contact with the AMP Project Manager in the Research Partnerships Division of the FNIH. Consultant will be paid on an hourly basis, with the number of hours per week to be negotiated at the outset of the engagement and adjusted quarterly. The engagement is currently planned to last two years, from Q4-2014 to Q1-2016.

How to Apply

Please send a current CV or resume and a cover letter to with“AMPGW” in the subject line.

About Our Organization

The Foundation for the National Institutes of Health (FNIH)is a leader in addressing complex scientific and health issues. Established by the U.S. Congress to support the mission of the NIH, the FNIH is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization that brings new resources to a broad portfolio of programs and projects that enhance the activities and priorities of the NIH and the biomedical community.

An analysis appearing in PeerJ finds that social media mentions of a paper may lead to increased citations.

NIH's Michael Lauer looks at the number of grants, their amount, and funding success rates at the agency for last year.

At Nature, Johns Hopkins' Gundula Bosch describes her graduate program that aims to get doctoral students thinking about the big picture.

Patricia Fara writes about childcare funding, and women in science and science history at NPR.