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Sampson Lab Research | Overview


The overall goal of the Sampson Lab is to help improve the health of children with nephrotic syndrome through applied genomics, with a focus on samples and data collected from patients with this condition. We use computational genomics and bioinformatics to discover new, and map known, nephrotic syndrome-associated variants. We use systems genomics to integrate this genetic data with other genome-scale molecular datasets to try to understand the mechanisms linking these genetic changes with disease. And we use epidemiology to discover the clinical consequences for patients carrying disease-associated genetic variants.

Our lab is equally committed to ethically and responsibly sharing genomic data in a manner that is of maximal usefulness for our colleagues. We firmly believe that widespread sharing in this way will allow parallelization of genomic discovery efforts — accelerating progress toward treatments and cures for nephrotic syndrome.

Finally, we are committed to helping to increase the genomic literacy of both pediatric and adult nephrologists. We do this by offering research opportunities in our lab for colleagues at all levels of training and by participating in local, national, and international efforts related to clinical “nephrogenetics.”

Work with us

Post-doctoral Fellow: Genetic basis of immunosuppressant sensitive nephrotic syndrome

The Sampson Lab studies the genomics of nephrotic syndrome, a rare and often debilitating form of kidney disease. We use a variety of technologies (e.g. SNP arrays, whole genome sequencing, RNA-seq and ATAC-seq of kidney tissues) and methods (e.g. GWAS, eQTL, rare variant association, epidemiologic modeling) to (1) discover genetic drivers of nephrotic syndrome, (2) provide insight on their biological mechanisms, and (3) describe their clinical impact. Current areas of focus include (1) immunosuppressive sensitive nephrotic syndrome, (2) APOL1-associate kidney disease, and (3) gene regulatory circuit mapping in kidney cells to illuminate mechanisms underlying nephrotic syndrome risk loci. Our group is extremely collaborative both through formal participation in consortia and through informal collaborations with medical professionals and experimental groups worldwide.

We are now interested in recruiting a post-doctoral fellow for a project related to immunosuppressant sensitive nephrotic syndrome (ISNS). Through GWAS, our group and others have begun to illuminate the genetic basis of ISNS. Bioinformatic and multiomic integrative analyses of the small but growing number of ISNS GWAS loci point to genes expressed in resident kidney cells and circulating immune cells. This fits our biological and clinical understanding of this disease. We now need to experimentally pursue these GWAS loci to implicate the causal SNPs, the gene(s) they impact, and the cell type(s) in which they exert their effect.

To drive this project, we seek an individual with a strong background in cell or molecular biology, or related fields. We prefer experience with molecular genetics and glomerular biology OR immunology.

Required qualifications:

  • doctoral degree
  • expertise in cell or molecular biology
  • existing knowledge of glomerular or immunologic disease or immune dysregulation
  • enjoyment of working with a large and diverse team of physician-scientists, scientists, and trainees
  • expected to write portions of research proposals and manuscripts while also acting as a liaison with external collaborators to acquire data and to share research information
  • expected to make formal presentations of research findings and to take a leadership position and make decisions about the direction of the research work

Contact information:

Matt Sampson, MD, MSCE
Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School
Warren E. Grupe Chair in Nephrology, Boston Children’s Hospital
Associate Member, Broad Institute