Postdoctoral Fellow in Neuroscience

VA Puget Sound Healthcare System, Seattle, WA
Up to $55,000 per year + benefits
Jan 14, 2021
Mar 15, 2021
Position Type
Full Time
Entry Level

A postdoctoral fellowship position is available in the Davis Laboratory at the VA Puget Sound Healthcare System, affiliated with the Department of Neurology, the Institute of Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine (ISCRM), and the Neuroscience graduate program at the University of Washington in Seattle, Washington, USA. This position will encompass projects related to Parkinson’s disease, neurodegeneration, stem cell modeling, PD genetic risk, endolysosomal trafficking and the role of extracellular vesicles in accelerating disease progression and Lewy body propagation.

The Davis lab is interested in understanding the cellular mechanisms underlying Parkinson’s disease in order to identify novel therapeutic targets. To do this we use Drosophila model systems and human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) from patients harboring genetic risk variants. We are currently using a Drosophila model of glucocerebrosidase (GBA) deficiency, as mutations in GBA increase risk for developing PD and rate of disease progression, as well as an in vitro model of neurons differentiated from iPSCs from a PD patient heterozygous for a GBA mutation.  We are investigating how GBA mutations impair endolysosomal trafficking, and may accelerate propagation of pathogenic proteins in neurons via dysregulation of extracellular vesicles. We also collaborate with the Parkinson’s Genetic Research Study (PI Dr. Cyrus Zabetian) to translate findings from our fruit fly and in vitro models to PD patients. The successful candidate will have the opportunity to do research in a collaborative intellectual community involving Puget Sound VA Geriatric Research Education and Clinical Center (GRECC), UW ISCRM, and UW Department of Neurology, and UW Neuroscience program. Our lab applies a combination of stem cell biology, neurobiology, genetics, biochemistry and microscopy using Drosophila models and human iPSCs-derived neural and glial cell culture models.


Completed PhD in a biomedical science, have the ability to fulfill responsibilities listed below, and eligibility and willingness to apply for external postdoctoral funding including T32/F32 NIH training grants or other independent funding sources. 

Knowledge/ Skills necessary:

·         Strong problem solving skills

·         Knowledge of genetics and/or neurobiology

·         Ability to design and execute controlled experiments

·         Effective communication with internal and external researchers

·         Reporting of research findings

·         Aptitude for effective scientific writing

Desirable Experience/Skills

·         Familiarity with Drosophila

·         Experience with cell culture, microscopy, and immunoblotting.

·         Competence in molecular cloning


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