The laboratory of Dr. Ferrarelli at the University of Pittsburgh has an opening for a postdoctoral associate. The goal of the research is to investigate the neurobiology of psychiatric disorders, and especially schizophrenia and related disorders, employing neurophysiological and neuroimaging techniques. These techniques include high-density (hd)-EEG, Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS), fMRI, and 7T Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy Imaging (MRSI), applied both during wakefulness and sleep.
Our lab recently utilized some of these techniques to identify several putative biomarkers in patients with chronic schizophrenia, and you will be involved in novel studies assessing these biomarkers in early course psychosis and individuals at clinical high risk for schizophrenia and related disorders. Some of these biomarkers have been associated to memory, plasticity, and general cognitive ability, and tend to predict post-learning performance improvement in healthy individuals. Thus, by collecting these measures in adolescents and young adults, our studies could not only significantly contribute to an early detection and assessment of the level of risk for psychosis, but could also contribute to elucidate some of the neural circuits and mechanisms underlying learning and memory in the normally developing brain.
This position is therefore ideal for candidates who are interested in employing a multi-modal imaging approach to characterize brain circuits implicated in risk for psychosis and related cognitive dysfunctions during a critical phase of brain maturation. It will also provide the opportunity to spend time in Pittsburgh, one of the most livable and vibrant cities in the country, and to work in the Department of Psychiatry, a unique environment for young researchers to foster collaboration, be productive, and develop an independent program of research.
1) Ph.D. in neuroscience, psychology, biology, physics, mathematics or other neuroscience-related disciplines
2) Preferred experience in one or more of the above-mentioned techniques
3) One or more first-author publications in an international, peer-reviewed neuroscience journal
4) Strong data-analysis and programming skills (MATLAB, C, R, MNE-Python, or related programming languages)