[FieldTrip] PhD studentship – Modelling cortico-subcortical oscillatory connectivity.

Vladimir Litvak litvak.vladimir at gmail.com
Tue Feb 18 10:37:29 CET 2020

*PhD Studentship – Modelling cortico-subcortical oscillatory connectivity.*

Applications are invited for a 3-year funded PhD studentship in the
Wellcome Centre for Human Neuroimaging (https://www.fil.ion.ucl.ac.uk/)
under the supervision of Dr. Vladimir Litvak and Dr. Simon Farmer and in
collaboration with the Computational Neuroscience Group (CNS,
https://www.upf.edu/web/cns), led by Prof. Gustavo Deco, at the Center for
Brain and Cognition (https://www.upf.edu/web/cbc), Pompeu Fabra University
(Barcelona, Spain).  The position is part of the EU-funded Innovative
Training Network euSNN (“European School of Network Neuroscience”) and
available, with full-time employment, for a duration of 3 years with
immediate start.

The euSNN Innovative Training Network integrates 16 leading European groups
in network neuroscience and 7 companies to train students who want to
pursue a successful career in the field of network neuroscience. The euSNN
training programme offers a unique combination of experimental, analysis
and modelling approaches. Exploiting intense collaborations between
experimental, theoretical and clinical groups, euSNN links basic research
on large-scale brain dynamics with new pathophysiological approaches and
clinical applications. The euSNN network is coordinated by Prof. Dr.
Andreas K. Engel. Further information on the euSNN network can be found at

*Project details*

Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) is an effective treatment method for a range
of neurological and psychiatric conditions. It involves placing electrodes
deep in a patient’s brain, usually in precisely targeted subcortical
nuclei. DBS surgery affords a unique opportunity to study the neural
activity of these nuclei via recording of local electrical signals known as
local field potentials (LFP). Our group pioneered simultaneous recording of
subcortical LFP with non-invasive whole brain imaging using
magnetoencephalography (MEG). This makes it possible to map out
cortico-subcortical oscillatory coherent networks which have characteristic
frequencies and cortical topographies for each subcortical target. Over the
years we collected data from several different subcortical nuclei and
characterised their oscillatory networks. The aim of the proposed project
is to establish a modelling framework which could accommodate these
findings and make quantitative predictions for future experiments. This
will require extending existing models of cortical dynamics and integrating
information from additional imaging modalities such as functional MRI and
Diffusion Tensor Modelling (DTI).

The euSNN training network offers exciting and unique opportunities for the
student to pursue this project including interactions with top experts in
neuroimaging brain modelling and exposure to several different modelling
frameworks and approaches that the student will have to master and
integrate to achieve the project’s goals. There might also be opportunities
towards the end of the project to test some of the predictions
experimentally. In addition, the student will have a chance to work on
secondments with commercial companies on topics relevant to the project.

*Funding notes*

The starting date can be any date between being offered the position and 1st
October 2020 and the contract is for 36 months. The studentship includes
UK/EU tuition fees and a stipend along with additional funds to cover
travel and accommodation during secondments and network activities.
Overseas fees cannot be covered.

*Entry requirements*

Applicants should have an Honours Degree (minimum 2:1) in a quantitative
discipline: Physics/ Mathematics/Engineering/Computer science, strong
mathematical background and interest in neuroscience. Knowledge of
scientific programming languages, particularly Matlab, background in
modelling complex physical systems and a relevant Masters qualification is
desirable. Applicants should be willing to travel to attend the network
activities and spend prolonged periods of time (up to a few months at a
time and at least 8 months in total) doing secondments outside the UK.
must not have been residing in the UK for more than 12 months prior to the
start of the appointment.*

*Deadline 30th April 2020. Shortlisted candidates will be interviewed in

*How to apply:*

Applicants should submit 1) a CV, 2) a 1-page statement detailing why you
want to do the PhD, motivation, interest and suitability for the project,
3) a copy of your strongest single piece of academic work (e.g. thesis,
publication), and 4) contact details of two referees. Please ensure that
each document is clearly labelled with your surname. Please send all
documents to Kamlyn Ramkissoon k.ramkissoon at ucl.ac.uk
<k.ramkissoon at ucl.ac.uk%20>by *30th April 2020*. Interviews will be held in
May 2020. Informal enquiries are welcome to Dr Vladimir Litvak (email:
v.litvak at ucl.ac.uk).
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