New Zealand : PhD in computational neuroscience in New Zealand

Two PhD students to do PhD at University of Otago in New Zealand. Applicant should have a Master degree either in Math, Physics, Engineering or Computer Science or be proficient in programming. Some knowledge of Neuroscience, Molecular Biology, or Genetics (depending on the chosen topic below) is also required.

I have two PhD topics:
1. Models and computational simulations of synaptic plasticity in the
brain. Neural activity-dependent synaptic plasticity is the basis of
learning and memory formation in the brain. We have an ongoing
collaboration with the Brain Health and Repair Research Centre of University of Otago, from which we can obtain plenty of data on synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus. We want to develop and test
explanatory theoretical and computational models of these data in order to seek abstract theoretical rules of synaptic plasticity.

2. Computational neurogenetics. Recently researchers from the Brain Health and Repair Research Centre of University of Otago identified gene regulatory networks involved in synaptic plasticity. The goal of this research will be to explore the dynamic behaviour of these regulatory networks and make predictions what happens when genes are mutated or silenced. We will also explore the possibility to link genes to abstract synaptic plasticity rules.

Applicant will have to apply for one of about 200 University of
Otago PhD scholarships, see
The scholarships of 20,000NZ$/pa for 3 years are awarded on a competitive basis mostly based on the marks during the previous study.

Before an official application, the candidate should first contact me with an informal inquiry. Applications will be processed until the positions are filled.
Lubica Benuskova
University of Otago
New Zealand
Tentative Application Deadline : 30 June 2010

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