Beth Sampher

Beth Sampher

Bioinformatics Technician

Beth’s job title is Bioinformatics Technician at the Wellcome Sanger Institute

What I do

Bioinformatics is quite a broad field. My team focuses more on software development, but it is all based on biology. We develop software that will help scientists track their experiments in the lab.

We are also starting a new project called Saturation Genome Editing which is to do with making lots of edits in the genome and seeing the effects of those. I am supporting the informatics for that and developing software that will help the scientists design the experiments. As the Bioinformatician on the team, I also get involved with data analysis.

Beth Sampher's team

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How I became a technician

A typical day in my
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A little more about
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What I love most about my job

The fact that I can contribute in a tiny way to the scientific breakthroughs that go on here. I am so passionate about science. Scientists are making important breakthroughs, finding things out about different diseases, like cancer. Sanger is still working on sequencing the COVID genomes and this helped with tracking variants during the pandemic. We also sequence animal genomes here which helps with conservation. It is all very important groundbreaking stuff!

The best bits about working in a team

I work in a team of 10. Everyone gets on really well and it is nice to bounce ideas off people. We have a great relationship and it makes coming to work more fun. It’s nice to come on site and see people face-to-face. It’s very supportive and everyone has different skills. I have learned so much from the more senior members of the team.

The most exciting thing I’ve achieved so far in my job

Learning to code! I had no clue when I started and I have come a long way. Some of the public engagement projects that I have been involved in have been exciting. We did a week-long workshop and activities around COVID and programming. I hadn’t done anything like that before. It was definitely out of my comfort zone and to pull it off was an achievement.

The next steps in my career journey

I would like to become a Bioinformatician, either in my team, the wider group or at Sanger. Hopefully I can get a job here as we have the Technicians Commitment at Sanger.

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