The Griffith Lab is an interdisciplinary team of biologists, bioinformaticians, computer scientists, software developers and software engineers. Each member of the lab is trained to use computational biology approaches to address research questions relating to cancer biology and precision cancer medicine. We train students and post-docs with a biology background that would like to develop bioinformatics skills. We are equally interested in trainees with a computer science background that would like to apply these skills to studying cancer biology and improving patient outcomes.

Trainees interested in joining the lab may find the following suggestions/resources useful:

  • Use It contains many posts with suggestions of books, websites, and courses focused on bioinformatics.
  • Learn R. For those focused on the analysis/translation end of bioinformatics, this is the single most powerful tool.
  • Learn at least one scripting language (e.g., Python or Perl). Code Academy has a good Python intro.
  • Learn some Ruby/Rails and/or Javascript. We are increasingly creating web resources such as, and
  • Take at least some formal computer science training (one or two introductory computer science courses).
  • Learn at least basics of good software development practices: for example, using software version control and code repositories (e.g., github).
  • Develop key skills such as statistics (classic stats and Monte Carlo methods), machine learning, data wrangling, and other big data techniques.
  • Have at least some hands-on familiarity with wet lab molecular biology (sequencing protocols, tissue culture, PCR, etc.).

Note that if you wish to join the Griffith Lab as a PhD or MSTP student, you must first gain acceptance to the appropriate WASHU graduate program, choose a program within DBBS, and rotate through 2-4 labs (one of which would be the Griffith Lab). After that, we can discuss the possibility of joining the lab. We cannot accept students directly prior to acceptance to WASHU.