Postdoctoral Position in Systems/Computational Neuroscience

Updated on 11/17/2019

 

A postdoctoral fellowship is available to conduct research with Drs. Hualou Liang and Vikas Bhandawat at Drexel University. The position is for a computational neuroscientist. Experience/Interest in performing experiments is a plus but not essential.

 

The research project is aimed at understanding neural control of movement - how descending neurons and thoracic (equivalent to spinal cord) motor circuits, and sensory feedback control the coordination of a fly's leg and coordination between legs. Because each leg has many degrees of freedom, and there are 6 legs, the movement space is large. We will employ concepts from dynamical systems, statistical methods as well as machine learning/deep learning to discover latent structure from high-dimensional data, to extract movement states, and to understand how these states are regulated by interactions between behavioral demands  (carried by descending inputs), current body configuration (computed by thoracic circuits based on past limb positions), and on-going sensory feedback (through proprioceptors and load feedback).

 

The successful candidate will have received a Ph.D. in a relevant discipline with substantial experience in Computational Neuroscience. The position will be largely computational, but there is an opportunity to perform a wide variety of experiments, including, in vivo whole-cell patch clamp, in vivo functional imaging, tethered/free behavioral assays in the Bhandawat lab.

 

The Liang Lab works on problems at the intersection of machine learning and neuroscience, with particular interest in using the tools of artificial intelligence to study brain function and other complex processes. The major thrust of the lab is computational. Our current research uses data science to advance a broad range of topics that include understanding brain function, discovering causal structure from observations, and using deep learning and natural language processing to ease the burden of generic drug review. For current projects, please visit https://liang-lab.org/research/

 

The Bhandawat lab studies how animal behavior emerges from the complex interaction amongst the animal's nervous systems, their muscle-body dynamics, and their environment. We use fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster) as our model organism because they perform many complex behaviors with a relatively simple brain, and because of the many genetic tools that are available in the flies. We employ a multi-pronged approach which includes in vivo whole-cell patch clamp recordings, imaging, and quantitative measurement of behavior, biomechanics and computation. For more information on research conducted in the Bhandawat lab, please check our website at http://biomed.drexel.edu/labs/bhandawat/

To be considered for this position please send a CV and a letter describing research interest to Hualou Liang (hualou.liang@drexel.edu) and Vikas Bhandawat (vikas.bhandawat@drexel.edu).

Start date: Immediately

Funding mechanism: funded by a NIH grant.