Post Doctoral Scientist

Washington D.C. (US)
16 May 2019
End of advertisement period
15 Jul 2019
Contract Type
Full Time

The Department of Pharmacology & Physiology at the George Washington University is an active research department, with federally funded programs in neuroscience and development, cardiovascular pharmacology and integrative physiology, genomics and oncology. We provide unique training opportunities in biomedical research at the pre and postdoctoral level. We offer courses in Pharmacology and Physiology for Medical and Physician Assistant students, as well as several courses at the graduate level through the GW Institute for Biomedical Sciences. Our mission is to provide the highest quality of educational opportunities to our community, and to advance scientific knowledge and improve human health through cutting-edge research in the biomedical sciences. Additional information on the Pharmacology & Physiology department can be found at the following link:

Dr. Colonnese Laboratory of Systems Neural Development is uncovering the secret life of the fetal and infant brain. We used advanced electrophysiological methods in animal models of human development. Combined with genetic techniques to manipulate activity during early circuit formation, we ask two fundamental questions: (1) How are neural circuits specialized during early development to generate and transmit activity, which is critical for circuit formation? (2) What changes in circuit function must occur to switch the brain from a fetal mode of function to the adult mode, which is critical for normal sensory processing and cognition? One of the major goals of the lab is to create and atlas linking underlying circuit dysfunction to changes in the EEG of preterm and perinatal infants. Our current focus is on the role of the thalamocortical loop, including the GABAergic reticular nucleus, in the amplification and synchronization of spontaneous retinal activity and in the developmental origins of cortical state regulation.

Dr. Colonnese’s lab is recruiting a Post-Doctoral Scientist interested in functional development of thalamcortical circuits in vivo. The ideal candidate is a computational neuroscientist with experience modeling thalamocortical circuits who is interested in developing an experimentally grounded model of early network dynamics and plasticity as part of a collaboration with Boris Gutkin (Ecole Normale Superior, Paris) and Jonathan Toboul (Brandeis Univeristy, Waltham MA). Performing in vivo electrophysiology and calcium imaging in neonatal mice and analysis of such data are possible components of the project, depending on interest.

This position is primarily a temporary/training position in which the incumbent plays a substantive role in planning and conducting research by designing and conducting experiments in a controlled laboratory setting. In collaboration with the Principal Investigator, this role will participate in the planning of independent research, will analyze and interpret data, will publish results, will represent the university at conferences and meetings, and may develop new theories and methodologies. This position may also help the Principal Investigator to lead and direct the work of lower level research staff. This role performs work under the supervision of experienced researchers.

Duties include:

  • Lead collaborative team to develop computational models of thalamocortical circuit development.
  • Participate in laboratory and GW Institute for Neuroscience community, including lab meeting, seminar series, mentoring of students.
  • Develop and apply methods for analysis of in vivo recordings and imaging, and apply for funding.
  • This position performs other duties as assigned. The omission of specific duties does not preclude the supervisor from assigning duties that are logically related to the position.