PhD position

Molecular and Cellular Neurobiology | 1,0 fte

About this position

The goal of this interdisciplinary PhD project is to generate accessible in vitro experimental models to allow visualisation of neuronal circuits with molecular precision. The PhD candidate will reconstitute complete neuronal networks from mouse primary cell cultures and human brain organoids and obtain high-resolution information on changes in network architecture and function using a multi-scale, multi-modal approach, including molecular and cellular biophysics, light and electron microscopy and electrophysiology measurements. The project consists of two parts, where first neuronal connectivity in complete networks will be mapped, and then underlying molecular mechanisms will be identified.

Concretely, the PhD student will start with establishing mouse neuronal networks from different brain regions (hippocampus, cerebellum) and mouse models (CAMK2, mTOR, SORCS2, TDP43) using high-content confocal microscopy and then apply that knowledge to neuronal network formation in brain organoids from patients suffering from neurological disorders. During the final phase of the PhD trajectory, the PhD student will zoom in on one of the mouse/human neuronal network models to unravel the molecular underpinnings of the disease.

Profile

We are looking for a highly motivated and goal-oriented researcher with a M.Sc. degree in in nanobiology, neuroscience, cell biology, biophysics, biomedical sciences, or related field. The ideal candidate has a background in cell biology and imaging, and is interested in applying advanced high-resolution light microscopy to neurobiological questions in health and disease. The candidate should be fluent in English and motivated to work in an ambitious and collaborative research team.

About this Flagship

This project is part of the Convergence program Integrative Neuromedicine, a large-scale collaborative effort from Erasmus University, Erasmus Medical Center and Delft University of Technology to develop integrated biological and computational models of the human brain. The PhD student will be part of the Meijer lab, while the project will be carried out in a tight collaboration with the Erasmus Medical Center.   

Activitities Flagship:  To achieve this goal, our flagship team includes fundamental scientists, engineers, philosophers, psychologists, and clinicians across the three different institutions to converge towards a personalized integrative medicine approach. We want to combine data from all scales, from birth to deathbed, to understand the evolution of neurological disorders. We will start with identifying common biomarkers involved in these disorders. . Our research will enable early diagnosis and improve potential treatments over time. Furthermore, we will show how new technology can be developed and used to achieve medically effective personalized treatment, while providing a comfortable and satisfactory experience from the individual’s perspective.

Our flagship project’s effectiveness, cohesiveness, and sustainability lie in the complementary ingenuity of interdisciplinary team members, our extensive network of academic and industrial partners, and the multiple sponsors seeking groundbreaking research. Ultimately, we will establish a pipeline that eases the transition from the bench to bedside through various breakthroughs to improve the subjects’ quality of care and quality of life.

Flagship Integrative Neuromedicine

What we offer

You will be employed by TU Delft. Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities. The TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, a discount on health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged.

For international applicants we offer the Coming to Delft Service and Partner Career Advice to assist you with your relocation. An International Children’s Centre offers childcare and there is an international primary school.

About Convergence

The pressing and complex social challenges of our time call for convergence; crossing boundaries between institutions and disciplines to create new perspectives and solutions. For this reason TU Delft, Erasmus MC and Erasmus University Rotterdam are joining forces in Convergence. Within the convergence theme Health & Technology we form new frameworks that promote scientific discoveries and technological innovation in health and healthcare. We do this by working on groundbreaking research and innovation bundled in 10 international leading research flagships.

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Additional information

For more information about this position please contact:

For more information about this vacancy, please contact Dr. Dimphna Meijer, Principal Investigator, e-mail: D.H.M.Meijer@tudelft.nl

Apply for this position

Are you interested in this vacancy? Please apply before 16 december 2022

via the application button and upload the following information in English (pdf format only):

1.         Letter of motivation (generic letters will be disregarded),

2.         Detailed CV with publication list

3.         High school transcripts (grades)

3.         Three names of potential references

Your application for this position can be sent to healthandtechnology@convergence.nl