PhD Student

Last application date
Oct 15, 2022 00:00
GE34 - Department of Head and Skin
Limited duration
MSc degree in biomedical, life sciences or bioengineering
Occupancy rate
Vacancy type
Research staff

Job description

4BRAIN is looking for a highly motivated fellow interested in studying the role of astrocyte-neuron interactions in the context of brain circuits hyperexcitability control by noradrenaline. The selected applicant will investigate the role of specific adrenoceptor subtypes in astrocytes response to noradrenaline by ex vivo and in vivo electrophysiology in a mouse model for temporal lobe epilepsy.

This Ph.D. project is integrated in an exciting multi-lab collaboration between UGent (4BRAIN, Kristl Vonck, Lars Emil Larsen and Robrecht Raedt), VUB (Experimental Pharmacology Lab, Dimitri De Bundel and Ilse Smolders, VUB) and KU Leuven (Steven De Vleeschouwer, Jerome Wahis). This consortium of labs provides the opportunity to bridge measurements across scales and modalities, combining expertise in astrocyte-neuron interactions, in vitro to in vivo study of circuit excitability, neuromodulation, and epileptogenesis.

The fellow will be granted access to state-of-the-art core facilities of Ugent, as well as interact with partners lab at VUB and KU Leuven. Career advancement activities, such as presentations at international scientific events, writing of funding proposals, and participation in workshops are strongly encouraged.

We offer an opportunity to do cutting edge science in a supportive and collaborative team. The candidate will join the vibrant community of students and postdocs at the UGent. The lab is known for its open and collegial atmosphere and has a strong multidisciplinary team with expertise in preclinical and clinical epilepsy research, brain surgery, in vitro and ex vivo electrophysiology, neuromodulation (vagus nerve stimulation, deep brain stimulation, opto- and chemogenetics), small animal imaging and histology.

State-of-the-art tools and facilities: the applicant will have access to dedicated surgical and viral vector facilities, multiple imaging setups for confocal, multiphoton, and super-resolution microscopy in Leuven. Partner labs will provide expertise for patch clamp electrophysiology and advanced microscopy and fluorescence imaging as well as transgenic mouse models.

This is a fully-funded position. The position is for an initial 1-year term with the possibility of extension for up to 3-years assuming satisfactory performance.

Job profile

We are looking for highly motivated applicants with an MSc degree in biomedical, life sciences or bioengineering and a strong interest in neuronal circuit physiology and its modulation by astrocytes and neuromodulators. Prior experience in electrophysiology, histology, and quantitative data analysis is a plus. In addition, due to the highly collaborative nature of the project, the applicant will be expected to have good communication skills coupled with an independent, critical mindset and solid problem-solving skills.

How to apply

Interested candidates should send a CV, motivation letter, and two (email) addresses of potential referees to this email address:
The closing date for applications is October 15th 2022.
Interviews with selected candidates will take place before November 1st 2022.
The starting date for this PhD position will be December 2022.