[visionlist] 2 x Postdoc positions to study GABAergic mechanisms of learning in mouse visual cortex (Cambridge, UK)

Jasper Poort jp816 at cam.ac.uk
Tue Dec 14 10:02:13 -04 2021

2 x Postdoc positions to study GABAergic mechanisms of learning in mouse visual cortex (Cambridge, UK)

Applications are invited for two Postdoctoral Research Associate positions to study GABAergic mechanisms in mouse visual learning. One will primarily focus on measuring GABA using magnetic resonance spectroscopy and will be based in the laboratories of Professor Jeff Dalley (Dept. Psychology) and Dr Stephen Sawiak (Innes building, West Cambridge), the other will primarily focus on measuring GABA using recently developed genetically encoded GABA sensors with 2P microscopy and will be based in the laboratories of Professor Ole Paulsen and Dr Jasper Poort (both Department of Physiology, Development and Neuroscience) at the University of Cambridge. Both post holders will interact closely with each other and other members of the consortium.

The successful candidates will investigate the role of GABAergic interneurons in visual learning. The project will combine MRS-GABA, two-photon GABA and calcium imaging, electrophysiology, optogenetic and pharmacological manipulation of cell types and neural projections in visual cortical areas and decision-making brain areas to understand how mice learn visual decision-making tasks.

Applicants should have completed (or be about to submit) a PhD (Research Associate) or (under)graduate degree (Research Assistant) in neuroscience, biology, experimental psychology, engineering or other relevant disciplines. We are looking for someone with previous experience in imaging/electrophysiology/optogenetics/pharmacology and behavioural training in rodents, and strong data analysis skills (e.g. Matlab or Python). The positions are available from January 2022 onwards for an initial two year period with the possibility for extension. For more information about the three labs see: https://www.bio.cam.ac.uk/facilities/imaging/transneuro , https://noggin.pdn.cam.ac.uk/ and https://www.pdn.cam.ac.uk/svl/.

In addition to the cover letter, CV and contact details of two referees, applicants are asked to provide a brief statement (500 words) describing the questions and approach they consider important for the study of the role of cortical inhibition in visual learning and their future research ambitions.

The research is part of a new Wellcome Trust funded Collaborative award that brings together a cross-disciplinary team of international experts to investigate the role of GABAergic inhibition in learning. The programme bridges work across species (mice, humans) and scales (local circuits, global networks) and capitalises on cutting-edge methodological developments in our team: a) human/animal ultra high-field MR Spectroscopy and functional brain imaging (Emir lab, Purdue; Kourtzi lab, Cambridge), b) neuroengineering tools including optical GABA sensors (Looger lab: UCSD) and electrophoretic drug delivery (Malliaras lab, Cambridge), cellular imaging, optogenetics, electrophysiology neuropharmacology (Paulsen, Dalley, Poort labs, Cambridge; Rusakov lab: UCL).

This network provides unique opportunities for cross-disciplinary training in innovative animal and human neuroscience methodologies, neurotechnology and computational science. Successful applicants will be integrated in a diverse collaborative team and have the opportunity to participate in workshops and exchange visits across labs to facilitate cross-disciplinary training and collaborative working.

Apply here: https://www.jobs.cam.ac.uk/job/32553/

The closing date for applications is 6th of January 2022.

Informal enquiries about the position can be made to Jasper Poort (jp816 at cam.ac.uk<mailto:jp816 at cam.ac.uk>), Ole Paulsen (op210 at cam.ac.uk<mailto:op210 at cam.ac.uk>), Jeff Dalley (jwd20 at cam.ac.uk<mailto:jwd20 at cam.ac.uk>) and MR physicist Steve Sawiak (sjs80 at cam.ac.uk<mailto:sjs80 at cam.ac.uk>).

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