Postdoctoral Scientist - Hunt Lab
David Lewis Hunt, PhD
Departments of Neurosurgery, Neurology & Biomedical Sciences
Center for Neural Science and Medicine
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles CA, 90048
Lab website: https://www.cedars-sinai.org/research/labs/hunt.html
Google Scholar: https://scholar.google.com/citations?user=-vf0MCUAAAAJ&hl=en
The broad scientific interest of the lab relates to how information is processed by neural circuits in the brain to support cognitive functions such as memory, and what aspects of these normal processes become corrupted in neurological and neuropsychiatric disease. A central goal of our research is to understand how neural activity patterns arise and to decipher how neural activity dynamics execute computations that support cognition. To address these fundamental aspects of brain function, we employ a diverse array of experimental and computational techniques. Research in my laboratory is focused on three main topics:
- Mechanisms of Memory Function in the Hippocampus
- Utilizing rodents as a model system, we employ cutting edge experimental and computational techniques to integrate information across multiple levels of organization to make fundamental insights into memory function.
- Molecular and Cellular Human Neurophysiology
- Working closely with colleagues in the neurosurgery department, we use live human brain tissue samples from neurosurgical resection to answer basic questions about how human neurons and synapses operate.
- Method & Tool Development for Biomedical Research
- We collaborate with physicists and engineers to develop novel microelectrode devices and state-of-the-art technologies enabling new measurements of neural activity to advance our understanding of brain function.
The research objectives described above comprise a multi-disciplinary research program that strives to provide mechanistic explanations of the molecular, cellular, and circuit dynamics supporting cognitive function. Moreover, understanding the physiological underpinnings of normal cellular function and neural activity patterns can reveal the etiology underlying the transition to pathological states. Beyond these scientific objectives, my laboratory provides an environment where diversity and cultural competence are strategically positioned among the highest priorities. I view the opportunity to mentor as a privilege and it is this attitude of volunteerism and collegiality that I promote as a core component of the culture of my lab. As a Postdoctoral Scientist, you will participate in a variety of ongoing lab projects requiring electrophysiology data collection and analysis. Additionally, you will have the opportunity to pursue your own self-initiated research project of a topic related to the lab’s mission. Strong organizational and communication skills are critical.
Primary Duties and Responsibilities:
- May assist in the preparation of grant proposals but is not responsible for generating grant funds.
- May participate in publications and presentations as author or co-author.
- Designs and performs experiments. Will keep appropriate experimental records and documentation and analyze the results with the Principal Investigator.
- May develop, adapt, and implement new research techniques and protocols.
- Analyzes interpret, summarizes, and compiles data.
- Performs routine and complex laboratory procedures throughout the training period.
- Operates and maintains equipment and instruments.
- Doctorate (MD or PhD) in area directly related to field of research specialization. PhD degree in relevant basic science or biomedical engineering discipline, preferred.
Experience and Skillset:
- Highly motivated and works independently on research projects designed by a mentor (typically the PI) within area of specialization.
- Acquires thorough technical and theoretical knowledge of research project and objectives during one to five (1-5) year post-doctoral appointment.
- Demonstrated aptitude to perform experimental protocols and procedures, including detailed data collection, and analysis, and operation and maintenance of specialized equipment.
- Knowledge of safety standards and maintenance of specialized equipment.
- Experience with electrophysiology is required (patch-clamp technique in acute brain slices and/or extracellular recording in-vivo).
- Experience with optogenetics is desirable.
- Intermediate programming experience (Python, MATLAB) is a plus.