PhD Candidate in Molecular Neurobiology and Electrophysiology

Updated: about 1 month ago
Deadline: tomorrow

Faculty of Science

The Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour is a world-class interfaculty research centre that houses more than 800 researchers devoted to understanding the mechanistic underpinnings of the human mind. Research at the Donders Institute is focused around four themes: 1. Language and communication, 2. Perception, action and control, 3. Plasticity and memory, 4. Neural computation and neurotechnology.

The PhD project is a joint research initiative between the research groups of Dr Freyja Olafsdottir and Dr Anne-Sophie Hafner. Dr Olafsdottir will supervise your use of in vivo electrophysiology methods and Dr Hafner will supervise your use of molecular methods. Dr Olafsdottir’s lab aims to identify the neural mechanisms underlying the maturation of episodic and spatial memory. To this end, she employs cutting-edge chronic, in vivo neural recording techniques in developing rodents. In recent years, she has attracted significant research funding (such as the Christine Mohrmann Fellowship, Donders Institute) and has published in some of the most influential peer-reviewed journals in neuroscience (e.g. Nature Neuroscience, Neuron and eLife). Dr Hafner’s lab, on the other hand, aims to elucidate the mechanisms underlying the molecular basis of memory formation at synapses. She uses techniques such as omics approaches combined with FACs, metabolic labelling, and super-resolution imaging to investigate transcriptome and protein dynamics during synaptic plasticity, the molecular correlate of memory. The Hafner lab also investigates neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer's disease, with a strong focus on axonopathies. Anne-Sophie Hafner is a junior group leader most known for unravelling the first presynaptic transcriptome from mature excitatory terminals and demonstrating the abundance of active protein synthesis in all synaptic compartments: the postsynapse and excitatory and inhibitory presynaptic boutons. She is an author on more than ten original scientific papers published in journals such as Science, Neuron or Nature Neuroscience. As such, you will benefit from the complementary and internationally recognised expertise of both PIs. In addition, you will be able to take advantage of established collaborations both research labs have with leaders in the field of systems and molecular neuroscience, such as the labs of Prof. Erik Storkebaum and Prof. Francesco Battaglia.

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