Job Title: Postdoctoral Scholar
Job Number: 54965
Location: Charleston, US
Addiction is a chronic relapsing disorder characterized by loss of control over drug use. Drug-associated cues can initiate drug use, even after protracted abstinence, and the nucleus accumbens core (NAcore) serves as a portal whereby cue-induced activity in cortical and limbic projections initiates goal directed behaviors, including drug seeking. Accordingly, synaptic plasticity within these glutamatergic projections to the NAcore strongly contributes to drug relapse vulnerability. A common rodent model of cocaine relapse is the self-administration reinstatement model, in which rats or mice are trained to press a lever to receive an intravenous infusion of cocaine. During self-administration, drug infusions are paired to discrete light and tone cues and these cues become conditioned stimuli through Pavlovian learning. After self-administration, the rodent enters a period of extinction training in which lever pressing has no programmed consequences and drug-seeking behavior decreases rapidly. Relapse is then modeled by reintroducing the conditioned stimulus, robustly reinstating drug-seeking behavior without achieving drug access.
This post-doctoral role in the anesthesia department will consist of rodent addiction research including rodent behavioral studies, rodent handling and husbandry as well as rodent surgery. This position will also include a significant amount of data analysis and grant and manuscript writing. The position will be initially established for a minimum of one year, with continued employment on subsequent years based off of performance evaluations and specific milestones (project completions, presentations and grant and paper submissions). The position and duties outlined above will allow the post doctor fellow the education and skill set development necessary to become independently funded.
The candidate should be prepared to work on a set of research and projects focused on astroglia and their role in addiction. These experiments take place both within the Scofield lab and within additional collabortive environments within labs at the Medical University of South Carolina. The applicant should be willing to work alongside other research staff and take direction from Dr. Scofield and other members of the laboratory, be prepared to assist in the preparation of papers and grants and be prepared to identify opportunities and develop their own skills in all these areas.
· PhD level degree in psychiatry or biology. Should be eligible for membership in the Society for Neuroscience, or other organization affiliated with the International Neuroscience.
EXPERIENCE AND SKILLS
· Knowledge of rodent behavioral assays
· Experience in bench science, notebook keeping, pipetting, solution and reagent preparation and data analysis
· Experience with rodent neuroanatomy and histological preparations
· Extensive knowledge and skills using PC/Macintosh applications, especially spreadsheets, word processing, PowerPoint, and statistical analysis packages.
· Knowledge of MATLAB and Python is not a requirement but is considered a significant strength of an applicant
· Must have excellent oral and written communication and interpersonal skills.
· Ability to work independently, be self-motivated and able to adapt to evolving needs
· Ability to organize and manage multiple projects simultaneously.
· Ability to quickly develop and maintain productive relationships with team members.
· Ability to complete work assignments, accurately, timely, and with minimal supervision.
DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
· Completes research projects from surgery to rodent behavior, data collection and data analysis with relative autonomy
· Works with a broad range of collaborators to deliver research in the area of addiction neuronscience.
· Identifies opportunities for publications and research funding.
· Analyses and presents data, and prepares abstracts and manuscripts for dissemination.
· Leads and collaborates on peer-reviewed journal submissions.
· Keeps accurate and detailed records of experiments and results, and identifies and troubleshoots unexpected results.
· Observes and complies with safety standards and procedures.
· Works to develop and secure research funding.
% of time Duties / Responsibilities
• Conducts self-administration behavioral studies, monitoring catheter placement and performing surgery as needed to support this work
• Manages mouse breeding colonies to maintain appropriate levels of transgenic animals as needed for rodent studies
Performs microscopy (confocal or in-vivo 2-photon)
• Keeps accurate and detailed records of experiments and results, and identifies and
troubleshoots unexpected results.
• Observes and complies with safety standards and procedures.
• Works to develop and secure research funding.
• Works with a broad range of collaborators to deliver research in the area of addiction neuroscience
• Identifies opportunities for publications and research funding.
• Analyses and presents data, and prepares abstracts and manuscripts for dissemination.
• Leads and collaborates on peer-reviewed journal submissions.
Application Deadline: 2023-10-06