If you are already an accomplished programmer, your best bet
would be to get some background in biology and statistics.
I work at an academic genome sequencing center and most of my
programming is data munging. If I didn't
have a background in biology, I would still be able to implement
my programs, but my job wouldn't be as interesting.
If you are looking for good biology textbook take a look at
Recombinant DNA by James Watson. Its not as behemoth as Molecular Biology of the Cell and
is a classic.