PhD Student at Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel

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Location: Jerusalem, Israel

Contract length: Funding is available for three years and can be extended, if necessary.

Institution: Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Department: Department of Medical Neurobiology, Faculty of Medicine, Ein Kerem

The Role

The Hebrew University of Jerusalem are seeking motivated PhD candidates to study retinal and brain circuits that mediate the effect of abnormal lighting on mood. 

Light impacts mood in ways we are only beginning to recognize. The short days of winter can trigger seasonal affective disorder (SAD). Whereas, combining light with antidepressant therapy outperforms antidepressant therapy alone, not only in SAD patients, but also in non-seasonal major depressive disorder (MDD). Thus, light affects mood and can augment antidepressant therapy. However, the mechanisms underlying the effect of light on mood have remained unclear. The recent demonstration that a novel retino-thalamo-frontocortical pathway is necessary and sufficient for the induction of depression by abnormal lighting places us in a unique position to resolve this mystery. Their lab studies the synaptic input, functional organization, and broader behavioral significance of this pathway. The mechanistic insights obtained will pave the way for the development of treatments for diverse light-dependent mood disorders. 

The lab uses mouse genetic models and combine: (1) in vitro and in vivo functional imaging and electrophysiology, (2) reconstruction of neural circuits using light and electron microscopy, (3) 
optogenetic and chemogenetic manipulations of neural activity, and (4) behavioral analysis.

The Candidate

Successful candidates will show solid communication skills in English, ability to work both independently and as part of a research team, strong scientific motivation, and skill in data processing. Experience in one or more of the following would be an advantage: intracranial surgeries, optogenetics, animal behavioral analysis, two-photon imaging, in vivo electrophysiology, and Matlab or python programming. 

How to Apply

An application package, including a motivation letter, curriculum vitae, list of publications and names of 2-3 referees, should be sent to Dr. Shai Sabbah ([email protected]).

Contact Information

Shai Sabbah

Department of Medical Neurobiology 

Faculty of Medicine 

The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Ein Kerem 

P.O. Box 12271, Jerusalem, 9112102 Israel 

Phone: +972-2-6758401

Email: [email protected]


Please mention that you found this job on the Scientifica website when applying.

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