Research Assistant, Data Science *Entry Level*

A little about us:

The Lieber Institute for Brain Development (LIBD) was established in 2010 to plot a new course in biomedical research that would change the lives of individuals affected with developmental brain disorders. We are one of the only research institutions in the world focused specifically on understanding how genes and the environment influence the way our brains develop that lead to conditions such as schizophrenia, autism, bipolar disorder and related developmental brain disorders. Through our cutting-edge research, answers are emerging and being translated into a robust pipeline of new drugs in development. And, by focusing on genes and their dynamic interplay with the environment, we are getting even closer to the “holy grail” in medical research, the discovery of strategies for primary prevention.

We are a group of dedicated, multidisciplinary and optimistic researchers, working at the cutting edge of science, utilizing state-of-the-art tools to unlock the mystery of the brain and transform the way we approach the development of new treatments, and ultimately cures. LIBD is an independent 501(c)(3) medical research institute located in the Bioscience Park on the campus of the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and Hospital in Baltimore, MD.

Job Summary:

The Data Science I group, headed by Dr. Leonardo Collado-Torres, has a Research Assistant I, Data Science position available immediately. The Research Assistant will work on single cell and spatial transcriptomics projects in close collaboration with the Molecular Neuroanatomy group, headed by Dr. Kristen Maynard. This position is open to computational biologists seeking a position within a translational research setting with a focus on next generation sequencing projects using 10x Genomics single cell RNA-sequencing and Visium technology in postmortem human brain tissue. The Research Assistant will work in collaboration with other team members to analyze data from planned transcriptomic projects that aim to create single cell maps of gene expression in human brain and examine associations with neuropsychiatric disease. We are looking for someone who can contribute to our team environment and who is motivated to analyze data from new technologies and apply computational methods to human brain data. 

Specific Duties and Responsibilities:

· Assist in design of single cell and spatial transcriptomic experiments in postmortem human brain tissue using 10x Genomics technologies by working closely with Investigator.

· Helps perform rigorous, and reproducible analyses on RNA-seq datasets from technologies such as bulk RNA-seq, single cell/nuclei RNA-seq and spatial transcriptomics.

· Utilize publicly available data to enrich our findings from the LIBD datasets.

· Communicate with individuals with different expertise such as biologists, computational scientists, and biostatisticians. 

· Present research results at team meetings, LIBD meetings, and scientific conferences as well as contribute to peer-reviewed publications and grant applications.

· Participate in continuous learning activities such as the LIBD rstats club and bootcamps.

· Other duties as assigned.


Minimum Qualifications:

· Bachelor’s degree in computer science, computational biology, biostatistics, bioinformatics, biomedical engineering, or a related field.

Special Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:


· Initiative to learn new computational methods and perform work efficiently and carefully. 

· Experience with genomic data analysis using R/Bioconductor packages for one or more projects.

· Understanding of statistical methods such as linear regression, interaction models, ANOVA, t-Student and F distributions, p-values and false discovery rate (FDR).

· Evidence of computational skills and code version control through GitHub or similar options.

· Strong organizational skills, attention to detail, excellent problem-solving skills, excellent written and verbal communication skills.

· Ability to balance self-study with asking for help.


· Demonstrated leadership skills and participation in team-oriented activities.

· Experience performing computational analysis most commonly exemplified with peer-reviewed publications or pre-prints as well as public GitHub repositories.

· Familiarity with publications and software from LIBD groups.

Physical Requirements:

· Incumbent is required to work in an office environment. 

· Must be able to move about the office and campus as well as remain stationary for extended periods of time.

· Ability to continuously operate a personal computer for extended periods of time.

· Visual acuity as well as mental acuity sufficient to collect and interpret data, evaluate, reason, define problems, establish facts, draw valid conclusions, make valid judgments and decisions are required

· Ability to speak and hear well enough to communicate clearly and understandably with sufficient volume to ensure an accurate exchange of information in normal conversational distance, over the telephone, and in a group setting

· Physical dexterity sufficient to use hands, arms, and shoulders repetitively to operate a keyboard and other office equipment, use a telephone, access file cabinets and other items stored at various levels, including overhead

· Ability to lift or move objects up to 25 lbs.

** If accommodations are needed due to pregnancy or a disability, please contact 

We offer a comprehensive benefits package which includes medical, dental and vision insurance, 403B with employer matching, paid time off, wellness programs, short term and long term disability and much more. More information can be found here: 

Vaccination Requirement:  As of September 18, 2023, LIBD has simplified its COVID vaccination policy. All incoming students and employees must have received at least one dose of any FDA- or WHO-authorized vaccine, which aligns with current FDA guidelines.

EEOC Statement: At the Lieber Institute, we are committed to a work environment of mutual respect where employment decisions are based on merit. As an equal opportunity employer, the Lieber Institute does not discriminate in employment opportunities on the basis of race, color, religion, color, sex, gender identity/expression, sexual orientation, pregnancy, marital status, age, national origin or ancestry, citizenship, disability (physical or mental), genetic information, military service, or other non-merit based factors protected by state or federal law or local ordinance, with regard to any position or employment for which the applicant or employee is qualified. 


The Lieber Institute for Brain Development is a transparent and collaborative community working to produce unique and imaginative patient-oriented solutions to developmental neuropsychiatric disorders. It is committed to integrating scientists from diverse disciplines, cultures, and countries into a research team that draws upon the best of its staff. The Institute is historic—it is defining a unique model for ground-breaking science. It values translational science that revolutionizes the field and improves the quality of life for those affected by mental illness. The Institute provides an environment that fosters independent growth through mentorship and a supportive, collegial community. Diverse minds, ideas, and talent are needed to support LIBD's mission. Fresh, innovative ideas and perspectives are a competitive necessity in an increasingly diverse and global marketplace. The success of the Institute's mission depends upon leveraging a diversity of talent.

The Institute's commitment to diversity goes beyond compliance with laws and regulations that promote equal employment opportunity, prohibit discrimination and harassment, and support minority and woman owned businesses. To realize the advantages of its diversity, it is necessary to work effectively together even when differences challenge us to consider ideas and methods that seem impractical or make us feel uncomfortable.  

The Lieber Institute for Brain Development demonstrates it commitment to diversity by:

  • Including others: Talent is not limited to those with a narrow set of industry and academic credentials. The Institute is committed to building diverse teams, inviting others to share their perspectives, seeking out a diversity of input when making decisions, questioning traditional thinking, and promoting continuous learning and development.
  • Respecting one another: The Institute is committed to listening carefully to others, seeking consensus, engaging in active and constructive debate, thoughtfully challenging one another, and providing constructive feedback.
  • Building trust: The Institute is committed to sharing information and resources, depending on one another to get things done, keeping promises, and conveying high integrity in all actions.