Research Fellow position within the project
Neural Circuits Underlying Behaviour in the Protochordate Oikopleura

A 2-year Research fellow position (code 1109) is available at the Sars International Centre for Marine Molecular Biology, in the research group headed by Professor Joel C. Glover. The position is within the project Neural Circuits Underlying Behaviour in the Protochordate Oikopleura and is available immediately. The Sars Centre belongs to the University of Bergen, and is partner of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL). The place of work will be the Sars Centre with some research also being performed at Joel Glover’s main laboratory at the University of Oslo.

About project/work tasks:
The Glover group studies the evolution and function of the nervous system using as model organism the appendicularian tunicate Oikopleura dioica. Oikopleura is unusual among chordates in possessing a remarkably miniaturized nervous system (about 130 neurson in total), genetically patterned according to the vertebrate plan, yet exhibiting a relatively rich behavioral repertoire (see Kreneisz and Glover 2015 for review). We are interested in studying the organization and development of the neural circuits responsible for the movement patterns associated with these behaviors.

The project will employ optogenetic and non-genetic probes of morphology and activity to assess the connectivity and function of neurons that make up rhythm generators and their motor outputs. It is estimated that fewer than 30 neurons are involved, and these are likely to represent the core circuitry of vertebrate locomotor central pattern generators. We have recently developed a method for genetic manipulation of functional neuron subpopulations (Mikhaleva et al 2015), thus opening opportunities for penetrating analyses of this system at the level of identified neurons.

Specific techniques involved include morphological imaging (lipophilic and intracellular dyes, fluorescent protein expression) and functional imaging and photostimulation (calcium and voltage sensitive dyes and optogenetic probes). The successful candidate will work in close association with a postdoctoral fellow and the group leader.

Kreneisz O, Glover JC (2015) Developmental Characterization of Tail Movements in the Appendicularian Urochordate Oikopleura dioica. Brain Behav Evol.86(3-4):191-209.

Mikhaleva Y, Kreneisz O, Olsen LS, Glover JC, Chourrout D (2015) Modification via RNA interference of the larval swimming behavior in Oikopleura dioica, a chordate with a miniaturized central nervous system. J Exp Zool B Mol Dev Evol. 324(2):114-27.

Qualifications and personal qualities:

  • The applicant must hold a PhD or equivalent degree within Neurobiology or a related field and must have submitted his/her doctoral thesis for assessment prior to the application deadline. It is a condition of employment that the PhD has been awarded
  • Strong motivation to perform research at an internationally competitive level
  • Strong experience in optical recording techniques (calcium and/or voltage sensitive dye imaging) and/or optogenetics is desired
  • Experience in basic molecular biology methods is an advantage
  • Ability to work both independently and in close collaboration with others in a structured manner
  • Proficiency in both written and oral English

We can offer:

  • A good and professionally challenging working environment
  • Salary at pay grade 57 upon appointment (Code 1109), currently NOK 490.900 gross p.a. Further promotions are made according to length of service in the position
  • Enrolment in the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund
  • A position in an inclusive workplace (IA enterprise)
  • Good welfare benefits

Your application must be in English include:

  • A cover letter that includes a brief account of the applicant's research interests and motivation for applying for the position
  • CV
  • List of publications
  • The names and contact information for two reference persons. One of these must be the applicant's main PhD supervisor
  • Transcripts and diplomas and an official confirmation that the doctoral thesis has been submitted
  • Relevant certificates/references

The application and appendices with certified translations into English must be uploaded at Jobbnorge “Apply for this job” - see here. Please note that applications will be assessed only with the information available in JobbNorge when the deadline expires. It is the applicant's responsibility to ensure that all relevant attachments are submitted by the deadline.

Closing date for application: August 29, 2017

General information:
Further information about the position can be obtained from Group Leader Joel Glover, tlf. +47 98652457 / email

The state labour force shall reflect the diversity of Norwegian society to the greatest extent possible. Age and gender balance among employees is therefore a goal. It is also a goal to recruit people with immigrant backgrounds. People with immigrant backgrounds and people with disabilities are encouraged to apply for the position.

We encourage women to apply. If multiple applicants have approximately equivalent qualifications, the rules pertaining to moderate gender quotas shall apply.

The University of Bergen applies the principle of public access to information when recruiting staff for academic positions.

Information about applicants may be made public even if the applicant has asked not to be named on the list of persons who have applied. The applicant must be notified if the request to be omitted is not met.

The successful candidate must comply with the guidelines and regulations that apply to the position.

You have printed:
Sars International Centre for Marine Molecular Biology
University of Bergen: Unifob AS  ||  Partner of EMBL