Computational Postdoctoral Fellow

Aurora, CO
May 26, 2017
Position Type
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution

University of Colorado - School of Medicine

Computational Postdoctoral Fellow

Job Description:

The Computational Neuroscience Unit is recruiting a postdoctoral researcher to study the computational aspects of brain function using the retina as a model system. The role of the retina is to convert a vast amount of information present in the visual scene to a meaningful signal that can be decoded by downstream regions. In the lab unit, we interleave multi-compartmental modeling (NEURON simulation platform), electrophysiology (extracellular single-cell recording and intracellular patch clamp) and calcium imaging (two photon microscopy) of light-evoked neuronal responses to study neuronal computation on multiple levels, starting with the properties of a single synapse, integration of signals in the postsynaptic cell and flow of information within neural networks.

Dr. Alon Poleg-Polsky's lab unit is part of the department of Physiology and Biophysics at the University of Colorado Denver | Anschutz Medical campus School of Medicine which is known for its highly collaborate environment with many opportunities to interact with other sensory systems and computational neuroscience groups in a newly established research building.

Areas of Responsibility / Scope of Research:

The candidate will be able to choose among several projects:

Study the role of NMDARs in synaptic integration in different visual circuits
NMDARs are ubiquitously expressed in the brain, and mediate a significant portion of the excitatory drive. We had recently showed how NMDARs have the potential to significantly alter the rules of synaptic integration (Neuron. 2016 Mar 16;89(6):1277-90. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2016.02.013). The aim of this project is to examine NMDAR participation in different computational tasks to construct a comprehensive understanding of NMDAR function in the brain.

Elucidate the mechanisms of Direction Selectivity (DS) in the retina
Detection of stimulus direction is a classic neurocomputation performed in diverse sensory systems. We have developed a theoretical framework that builds upon and expands previous models of DS. In this project, we will combine calcium imaging and genetic manipulations to examine directly whether these models help explain the biology of DS circuit, eventually building a detailed network simulation to explain how the retina solves this interesting computational problem.

Examine changes in neural activity during disease
Pathological neurological conditions are often associated with an abnormal neuronal function, which can induce metabolic overload and increase the risk of cell death. We will compare activity in identified circuits at a single cell resolution between animals with retinal and general brain disorders to healthy controls. Our goal is to probe the link between function and disease prognosis and test potential treatment options.


Minimum Qualifications:

  • Graduation from an accredited college or university with a PhD/MD in field related to Neuroscience.
  • Experience and publications in the field of Neuroscience.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience in Neurological Modeling, Coding, Electrophysiology, and/or Imaging

Salary and Benefits:

Salary is commensurate with skills and experience. The University of Colorado offers a full benefits package. Information on University benefits programs, including eligibility, is located at Employee Services.

The University of Colorado Denver is dedicated to ensuring a safe and secure environment for our faculty, staff, students and visitors. To assist in achieving that goal, we conduct background investigations for all prospective employees.

The University of Colorado strongly supports the principle of diversity. We encourage applications from women, ethnic minorities, persons with disabilities and all veterans. The University of Colorado is committed to diversity and equality in education and employment.

The Immigration Reform and Control Act requires that verification of employment eligibility be documented for all new employees by the end of the third day of work. Alternative formats of this ad are available upon request for persons with disabilities.

Application Materials Required:Cover Letter, Resume/CV, List of References

Application Materials Instructions:

Applications are accepted electronically at CU Careers, refer to requisition ID: 09683

When applying, applicants must include:
  1. A letter of application which specifically addresses the job requirements and outlines qualifications
  2. A current Resume/CV
  3. The names, addresses, daytime telephone numbers and e-mail addresses for three professional references, either attached to your resume/CV or uploaded as a separate document
Please be advised that the University does check references as part of the employment process.

Please do not submit any of your application material (via email) to the job posting contact.

Job Category: Faculty

Primary Location: Aurora

Department: H0001 -- Anschutz Medical Campus - 20127 - SOM - Physiology

Schedule: Full-time

Posting Date: May 25, 2017

Closing Date: Ongoing

Posting Contact Name: Michael Cole

Posting Contact Email:

Position Number: 00607437


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