[visionlist] Postdoc opportunity in Computational, (NHP) Systems Neuroscience, and Autism Research

Kohitij Kar k0h1t1j at yorku.ca
Tue Sep 20 16:20:11 -04 2022


Kohitij Kar<mailto:k0h1t1j at yorku.ca> (Assistant Professor at Centre for Vision Research, York University, Toronto, Canada; Canada Research Chair in Visual Neuroscience, and Visiting Scientist at MIT<https://mcgovern.mit.edu/>), is seeking a postdoctoral fellow for an interdisciplinary project in systems and computational neuroscience. The candidate will be directly supervised by Dr. Kar. They will have avenues to extensively collaborate with researchers from many other universities like Dr. Ralph Adolphs (CalTech), Dr.<https://sites.wustl.edu/wanglab/> Shuo Wang<https://sites.wustl.edu/wanglab/> (Washington University), and with Dr. Jim DiCarlo<http://dicarlolab.mit.edu/> (Professor of Neuroscience, Brain and Cognitive Sciences, MIT; Director, MIT Quest for Intelligence). The primary goal of the research project(s) is developing a closed-loop framework using artificial neural networks and non-human primate experiments to test theories of atypical sensory processing in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The expected starting date is January 1, 2023. This position is funded by a grant from the Simons Foundation Autism Research Initiative.<https://www.sfari.org/>

The projects will provide an opportunity to acquire training and develop expertise on multiple techniques. These involve large-scale neural recordings in visual areas (e.g., V4, IT, and ventrolateral PFC) while non-human primates view various images and videos of faces and facial emotions and perform ASD-relevant behavioral tasks. Experiments will also involve chemogenetic perturbation of various brain areas. We will develop artificial neural network models of atypical sensory processing under various brain perturbation regimes. The postdoc will also have the opportunity to design human behavioral experiments to be conducted on neurotypical and autistic study participants. Please feel free to reach out even if only one of these techniques appeal to you, but you are interested in contributing to autism research.

Please check out our lab website, http://vital-kolab.org<http://vital-kolab.org/> for more details about the lab. Our group currently consists of undergraduate and graduate students, and postdoctoral scholars with a varied skillset and interest. We are looking for a candidate with a strong background in systems neuroscience, data analysis, and exposure to relevant machine learning methods, but most importantly with a deep interest in understanding (aka modeling) the inner workings of the primate brain. Strong experience with programming languages like Python, PyTorch, MATLAB and JavaScript are highly relevant to the projects.

The position will be initially offered for two years. There will be an opportunity to renew the position after the initial two years based on performance, availability of funds, and other logistical factors.

The successful candidate will be based in Dr. Kohitij Kar's laboratory at York University (Toronto, Canada), starting January 2023. Depending on the global situation, initial remote work is also possible.

The Centre for Vision Research at York University (www.cvr.yorku.ca<http://www.cvr.yorku.ca/>) is a dynamic and interdisciplinary research cluster with over 40 faculty members investigating biological and computer vision in departments ranging from physics and computer science to psychology and design. Dr. Kar is a core member of the Vision: Science to Application (VISTA<https://vista.info.yorku.ca/>) program.

VISTA is a world-leading institutional research program, located at York University and partially funded by the Canada First Research Excellence Fund (CFREF); it expands and integrates York's strengths in visual neuroscience, computer vision, arts and humanities to address 21st century opportunities and challenges. Dr. Kar will be hosted in a new world-class facility for visual neuroscience research (for more info: please contact Dr. Kar at k0h1t1j at yorku.ca<mailto:k0h1t1j at yorku.ca>). The postdoctoral fellow will have the opportunity to collaborate and network with researchers in Dr. Jim DiCarlo’s lab at the McGovern Institute of Brain Research at MIT (Cambridge, MA, USA). A collaboration with Dr. Jim DiCarlo will enable the postdoctoral trainee to benefit from parts of their infrastructure and scientific network. S/he will be an integral part of a community of global leaders in vision science. Specifically, the postdoctoral fellow is expected to contribute to an integrative benchmarking platform (brain-score.org<http://brain-score.org/>) and lead the development of a human-health centric branch of the platform. They will be provided adequate computational resources to do so successfully.

For further information, send your CV, and feel free to get in touch with Dr. Kohitij Kar (kohitij at mit.edu,<mailto:kohitij at mit.edu> and k0h1t1j at yorku.ca<mailto:k0h1t1j at yorku.ca> ) — please reach out as soon as possible to explore all possible avenues to pursue this position.

All the institutions involved value diversity, and we encourage applications from talented individuals of diverse backgrounds.
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