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(Senior / Principal) Scientific Programmer

Variant Bio

Variant Bio

Software Engineering
Seattle, WA, USA
Posted on Sunday, August 21, 2022

Variant Bio is a Seattle-based biotech company entering a rapid growth stage having closed a $105mm Series B financing in the fourth quarter of 2021. The company was started because we believe that human genetics has the power to transform drug development. We are working towards developing therapies to improve global health by studying the genes of people who are outliers for medically relevant traits. To facilitate this, we have built proprietary genomics and phenotyping platforms that allow us to dramatically reduce the cost of genomic studies and identify genetically-validated targets for therapeutic development.

Our team of geneticists, medical researchers, biologists and drug hunters continue to advance multiple projects through internal target validation and lead optimization efforts in relentless pursuit of translating human genetic insights into life-saving therapies.

All of our studies are co-designed with local partners: community groups, academics, and hospitals around the world, and we built Variant Bio from the ground up with ethics at its foundation. We recognize the contribution of our partners through an industry leading benefit-sharing program that dedicates 4% of our revenue and equity value to support local healthcare, sustainable development, education, research, and capacity-building initiatives. Through the Affordable Medicines Pledge we acknowledge that the communities who contributed data that led to the discovery of these new drugs have an equal and reciprocal right to share in the benefits, both financial and social.

Variant Bio is an equal opportunity employer that guarantees a work environment that respects and values diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, gender, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status.

Job Description

We are seeking a candidate with exceptional programming skills to continue developing our highly scalable computational genetics platform. This platform routinely analyzes thousands of whole genomes to make discoveries that will drive the next generation of therapies in areas with critical unmet need. The ideal candidate will be an expert coder with database integration experience and familiarity using cloud-based distributed computing platforms. The candidate will join a growing team within the company with diverse technical skill sets including software engineers and cloud architects and computational scientists including bioinformaticians and geneticists. This position is an opportunity to use highly technical skills to make a real world impact on the lives of patients and communities. Exact title and compensation will be dependent on education and experience. Preferred location is Seattle, but open to remote as long as physically based in the US.


  • Maintain and develop bioinformatics and computational genetics pipelines and libraries coded in Python using the Hail library.
  • Integrate computational pipeline inputs and outputs with relational MySQL databases.
  • Manage and deploy cloud computational infrastructure for running Apache Spark and Hadoop applications on Amazon Web Services.
  • Organize, maintain, and update a well-documented code repository on Github.
  • Work with scientists to develop new pipelines by translating custom workflows and analyses into the Hail framework.


  • Degree in computer science, data science, or a related field: BSc and 6+ years of experience OR MSc and 4+ years of experience OR PhD and 2+ years of experience.
  • Advanced Python and Java programming skills.
  • Exceptional knowledge of Linux operating systems and Bash scripting.
  • Familiarity with Apache Spark, MapReduce, and Hadoop for distributed computing.
  • Experience programmatically interfacing with relational MySQL databases.
  • Familiarity with scientific computing packages and software including Hail, Pandas, NumPy, SciPy.
  • Experience using cloud computing environments (e.g. AWS, Google Cloud, Microsoft Azure).
  • Well-versed in version control software and agile development tools.
  • Ability to work with a multidisciplinary biology team (bioinformaticians and geneticists) to implement scientific pipelines.

What We Offer

  • Opportunity to be part of a startup entering a rapid growth phase grounded in ethics.
  • Competitive salary and equity packages as well as a 401(k) plan that includes an automatic 3% employer contribution.
  • Comprehensive benefits including medical, dental and vision with 100% of monthly employee premiums paid for by the company.
  • Flexible paid time off to help employees obtain a healthy work-life balance.
  • Company paid professional development opportunities to encourage career progression.
  • Orca Card provided by the company for work related transportation.
  • Centrally located Eastlake, Seattle location in a new Alexandria building with modern facilities, including a gym.

Anticipated annual base salary for this position is $140,000 - $190,000 plus up to 10% bonus and an options package, for total compensation of up to $154,000 - $209,000, plus equity options.

The annual salary range above is based on the responsibilities and qualifications listed above. Individual salary will depend on job-related knowledge, skills, and experience.

Don't meet every single requirement but are excited to join the Variant Bio team? If your past experience doesn't align perfectly with every qualification in the job description, we encourage you to apply anyway. You may still be the right candidate for this or other roles.