Postdoctoral fellowship in Social Behavior and Neural Circuits in Zebrafish University of Gothenburg

Postdoctoral fellowship
 

Social behavior and neural circuits in zebrafish


Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs) are characterised by difficulties with social interactions, communication and repetitive behaviours, and unfortunately there is no effective treatment. Hundreds of genes and a number of environmental factors have been identified as contributing factors to developing ASD. The neuropeptide oxytocin affects social behaviour in many species and it has been suggested that endogenous oxytocin may play a role in the pathophysiology of autism.

Furthermore, it has been indicated that oxytocin treatment alleviates autism symptoms by increasing an individuals' social attention. However, the neurobiological mechanisms underlying the effects of oxytocin remain to be investigated in experimental animal models. Our research group has in recent years established behavioural models and neuroanatomical methods allowing us to investigate social behaviour, neuroanatomy and molecular mechanisms in zebrafish.


The current project aims to reveal the underlying neural circuits regulating social preference in zebrafish, and how this circuitry is modulated by autism genes, as well as by oxytocin.The candidate willconduct gene expression studies, and use neuroanatomical and imaging methodologies in wildtype and mutant zebrafish.


This postdoctoral stipend is funded by Lars Westberg’s research group at the Department of Pharmacology, University of Gothenburg,a research intensive workplace with ample opportunities for interaction with other research groups within the field of pharmacology, psychiatry, neurobiology and neuropharmacology. The postdoctoral fellow will also have close contact with researchers from other departments and universities in Sweden and abroad.
 

We are looking for a candidate with a strong interest in the neurobiology of social behaviours and autism. A suitable candidate has a solid neuroscience background, and previous experience ofneuroanatomical studies, immunohistochemistry, imaging methodology,behavioural studiesand zebrafish workare merited skills.Good communication and presentation skills, scientific integrity, and personal suitability with the rest of the research team are necessary.


Send your application including a personal letter, CV and PhD certificate to lars.westberg@pharm.gu.se before May 31, 2017.


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