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Postdoctoral position available Neural basis of predatory hunting and social defense

Posted by: Institute of Biomedical Sciences - University of S�o Paulo

Posted date: Feb-08-2017

Location: São Paulo-SP, Brazil

A postdoctoral position is available in the Department of Anatomy at the Institute of Biomedical Sciences – University of São Paulo. As part of our research grant funded by the Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo (FAPESP), the aim of the project is to investigate neural basis of predatory hunting and social defense. Several studies have suggested an involvement of the periaqueductal gray matter (PAG) in different behaviors that may share a component at motivational level. Previous studies from our lab suggest the existence of similar activation patterns of the lateral PAG (lPAG) in response to innate behaviors underlain by opposite motivational drivers, namely, insect predation and intraspecific defensive behavior. These results appear to reflect that, major behavior-specific neuronal ensembles could co-exist in lPAG, processing information independently with different functions at behavioral level. In order to address this issue, in the present project we aim to first identify the neuronal ensembles activated in response to both stimuli using a double labeling of c-Fos protein and c-fos mRNA. In case of finding behavior-specific neuronal ensembles we will then analyze their functional role at behavioral level using a novel selective optogenetic activation method, which consists of injecting, previously to hunting or social defensive behaviors, a Cre-dependent AAV vector expressing channelrhodopsin in genetically engineered mice that express Cre recombinase under the control of c-fos promoter. The present study involves the use of novel functional specific manipulation strategies and methodologies of neural circuits involved in motivational drives underlying predatory and social defensive behaviors. Experience behavioral analysis, as well imunohistochemistry and in situ hybridization is desirable. The candidate should also display the potential to be trained as an independent investigator and apply for independent funding. The candidates should contact Prof. Newton Canteras by e-mail (newton(at)usp.br).
Job Title Postdoctoral position available Neural basis of predatory hunting and social defense
Post Details
Email newton(at)usp.br
Employer's Website www.icb.usp.br
Job Discipline Job Discipline -> Neuroscience
Job Classification Job Classification -> Postdoctoral Researcher
Job Type Job Type -> Full-time
Location São Paulo-SP, Brazil
Key Words postdoc, neuroscience, PAG, predatory hunting, social defense, imunohistochemistry, situ hybridization
Start Date may/june 2017
Deadline Mar-10-2017