Neuroscience News Winter 2010

Published by the UCLA Brain Research Institute
Winter, 2010
Volume 19, No. 1

In this issue:

· Mark Your Calendars (
· Congratulations!
· BRI Science Outreach Activities (
· Fellowships, Awards & Grants – Opportunities & UCLA T32 neuroscience training grants
· Core Facilities/Resources – Carol Moss Spivak Confocal Imaging Core moved to the CNSI
· Employment – Opportunities/Candidates


    Ronald M. Harper, Ph.D. to present the 21st Annual H.W. Magoun Lecture
    March 9, 2010 at 4:00 pm
    Neuroscience Research Building Auditorium

    Horace “Tid” Magoun
    Horace “Tid” Magoun

    The accomplishment of which Magoun was most proud was the creation of the Brain Research Institute (BRI) on the UCLA campus in 1959. As in his research collaborations, Magoun was a driving force behind the founding of this interdisciplinary research center, but he let others stand in the limelight as he continued to encourage them and facilitate, promote, and disseminate their work. He recounted the history of this organized research unit on its twenty-fifth anniversary with two of the five original members, Illinois colleagues Donald B. Lindsley and John D. "Jack" French, the BRI's founding director.

    The Brain Research Institute cordially invites you to attend the 21st Annual H.W. Magoun Lecture, “Sleep, Breathing and the Heart,” presented by Ronald M. Harper, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor of Neurobiology, at the David Geffen School of Medicine, UCLA. Dr. Harper was selected as this year’s Magoun lecture for his extensive contributions to understanding the neural mechanisms that control breathing and cardiovascular action during sleep. Dr. Harper was one of the world’s early leaders in sleep researchers; his technical and scientific insights have transformed the field. Over the years, Ron’s research has become more focused on using various imaging techniques to examine the physiology and pathology of breathing in animal model and humans. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), Ron has made novel and unexpected discoveries that challenge accepted ideas about the function of the brain and the autonomic control. His work has led to insights fundamental to scientific progress and human well being. In addition to his research, Ron is a dedicated and devoted teacher and mentor; he served as the Chair of the Interdepartmental Graduate Program for Neuroscience, and has trained numerous students and postdoctoral fellows. His achievements are accompanied by a great generosity in helping other scientists. This is a well-deserved recognition of an outstanding scientist and citizen of the UCLA neuroscience community. We look forward to the 21st Magoun Lecture presentation. The lecture will be held on Tuesday, March 9, 2010, in the Neuroscience Research Building Auditorium, and will begin promptly at 4:00 p.m. Immediately following the lecture, a reception in honor of Dr. Harper will be held in the Gonda First Floor Conference Room, 1357. Please join us!


    The Joint Seminars in Neuroscience series will resume spring quarter, March 30, 2010. Please mark your calendars and plan to join us every Tuesday at 4:00 p.m. in the Neuroscience Research Building Auditorium.

    The Joint Seminars in Neuroscience are sponsored by the Brain Research Institute, the Semel Institute for Neuroscience & Human Behavior, and the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.

    Joint Seminars in Neuroscience 
    Spring Quarter 2010

    Tuesday, March 30, 2010
    Charles H. (Tom) Sawyer Distinguished Lecture 
    Jill B. Becker, Ph.D.
    , Professor of Psychology; Research Professor, Molecular & Behavioral Neuroscience Institute; Associate Director, Neuroscience Program, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
    “Title to be Determined”
    (Host: Art Arnold and the LNE;

    Tuesday, April 6, 2010
    Philip G. Haydon, Ph.D.
    , Annetta and Gustav Grisard Professor of Neuroscience, Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, Massachusetts
    “Title to be Determined”
    (Host: Baljit Khakh;

    Tuesday, April 13, 2010
    William M. DeBello, Ph.D.
    , Departments of Neurobiology, Physiology and Behavior, University of California, Davis
    “Title to be Determined”
    (Host: Felix Schweizer;

    Tuesday, April 20, 2010 
    George J. Augustine, Ph.D.
    , Department of Neurobiology, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina
    “Title to be Determined”
    (Host: Felix Schweizer;

    Tuesday, April 27, 2010
    Venkatesh N. Murthy, Ph.D.
    , Professor of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts 
    “Title to be Determined”
    (Host: Baljit Khakh;

    Tuesday, May 4, 2010
    Herwig Baier, Ph.D.
    , Division of Neuroscience, Vision Research, UCSF
    “Title to be Determined”
    (Host: Alvaro Sagasti:

    Tuesday, May 11, 2010
    Arturo Alvarez-Buylla, Ph.D.
    , Department of Neurological Surgery; Heather and Melanie Muss Endowed Chair; Principal Investigator, Brain Tumor Research Center, University of California, San Francisco
    “Title to be Determined”
    (Host: James Waschek;

    Tuesday, May 18, 2010
    The 18th Annual Samuel Eiduson Student Lecture
    David Rousso, Department of Neurobiology, University of California, Los Angeles
    “Title to be Determined”
    (Host: M. Levine;

    Tuesday, May 25, 2010
    David P. Corey, Ph.D., Department of Neurobiology, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts; Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute
    “Title to be Determined”
    (Host: Peter Narins;

    Tuesday, June 1, 2010
    Michael E. Goldberg, M.D.
    , David Mahoney Professor Brain & Behavior, Neuroscience, Neurology, Psychiatry, and Ophthalmology, Center for Neurobiology & Behavior, Mahoney Center, Columbia University, New York, New York
    “Title to be Determined”
    (Host: James Bisley;


    The BRI congratulates the meritorious achievements of Drs. Utpal Banerjee, Jack Feldman, and Richard Olsen.

    Utpal Banerjee, Professor and Chair of Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology and Professor of Biological Chemistry, and Jack Feldman, Distinguished Professor of Neurobiology, were two of six UCLA scholars selected as fellows by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). The AAAS is the world’s largest general scientific society and the publisher of the journal Science. Members are chosen for their distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications. The tradition of AAAS fellows began in 1874.

    Utpal Banerjee was selected for "distinguished contributions to the field of developmental biology, and for superior contributions to education programs." Dr. Banerjee and his research team seek to identify basic molecular strategies that are conserved in development across species. 

    Jack Feldman was selected for his research on the neural control of breathing, particularly for discovering and demonstrating the essential role of a brainstem region he and his research team called the preBötzinger Complex, which serves as the command post for generating breathing in mammals. They also identified a small group of neurons, called preBötC, which are critical for issuing the commands. 

    Richard Olsen Distinguished Professor of Molecular and Medical Pharmacology in the Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, received an honorary doctorate from the University of Copenhagen, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences. Dr. Olsen was one of 7 honorary doctorates awarded by the various colleges of the University of Copenhagen at their annual celebration in 2009 of the founding approximately 500 years ago, and the awardees were congratulated personally by Queen Margarethe of Denmark.

    The Dean of the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences Dr. Sven Frokjaer, in conferring the degree, noted that Dr. Olsen obtained the Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1971, and has over 300 research articles and chapters published in the field of molecular neuropharmacology, and is an expert on the receptor for the inhibitory neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) and its function in the nerve cell membrane. In recent years Dr. Olsen has advanced our knowledge of the action of alcohol, an interesting subject. Dr. Olsen has been a great friend to the University of Copenhagen, collaborating with her faculty, training her students in his laboratory, and examining Ph.D. thesis defenses. For his many contributions to the University and to the field in general, he was awarded the degree of “Doctor Pharmaciae Honoris Causa.” Dr. Olsen adds that he is Danish by heritage and that his grandfather, Wilhelm Westerlin Olsen, was born in Denmark and immigrated to America (Minneapolis) about 1900.

    Warm congratulations to Drs. Banerjee, Feldman and Olsen from the staff, students and faculty of the Brain Research Institute!


    The BRI sponsors multiple scientific and educational outreach programs throughout the year for the greater Los Angeles community. Events include school visits, tours and demonstrations, Brain Awareness Week tours, and sponsoring prizes at the California State Science Fair. We look forward to another busy Brain Awareness Week in March!

    During a typical BAW visit, students from schools in Los Angeles county tour the BRI on a very special field trip to celebrate the brain. Each day K-12 students arrive in front of the Gonda (Goldschmied) Neuroscience and Genetics Research Center to join Project Brainstorm leaders, Angela Rizk-Jackson, Aida Attar, Nanthia Suthana and Marina Ziehn. The tour begins with a brief overview on the structure and function of the brain, and then graduate students conduct presentations on the brain, including some hands-on activities, and educational, age-appropriate presentations ranging from brain injury, two-point discrimination testing, sensation, synaptic function, hemispheric differences, motor system and lobe functions, set up by the Interaxon undergraduate group. The students then visit research laboratories in the Gonda Center where they hear presentations about research on topics such as Aplysia, Drosophila, and memory research. Regardless of grade level, all students express great curiosity, insight, and interest throughout the entire day while being guided through the fascinating neuroscience research environment at UCLA


    Announcing the Warren and Janet Brown Scholarship
    Supporting Students in Neuropsychological Research

    Dr. Warren Brown has been a member of the UCLA Brain Research Institute since 1982. His relationship with the BRI goes back to his work as a post-doctoral fellow in 1972. He worked in Dr. Jim Marsh’s neurophysiology lab until 1982 and shares publications with Dr. Marsh as well as other UCLA faculty including Robert Asarnow, Keith Nuechterlein, and Robert Kern. 

    Dr. Brown is the current director of the Travis Research Institute and teaches at Fuller’s Graduate School of Psychology. With his wife Janet, Dr. Brown has played a foundational role in the lives of many Fuller alumni/ae. Since joining Fuller’s faculty in 1982, he has mentored future neuropsychologists, many of whom have also trained and conducted research at UCLA, most notably the post-doctoral fellowship in neuropsychology with Paul Satz (formerly) and Robert Bilder (currently). A track in neuropsychology has recently been established within Fuller’s clinical psychology program, a development made possible solely on the strength of Dr. Brown’s legacy.

    With a goal of $350,000, the new Warren and Janet Brown Scholarship will encourage professional excellence and offer critical support to students who want to impact the lives of others through neuropsychological research. It will be given annually, in the form of a research assistantship, to one or more students studying neuropsychology under Dr. Brown. If you would like to help extend the impact of Warren and Janet Brown, and enable students with a heart for research to pursue their calling, please contact Galen Buckwalter via email at: You may also make a pledge or give a gift online at (please designate to the Warren and Janet Brown Scholarship).

    Benefit Concert: You are also invited to a benefit concert, A Night with Eugene Friesen, to honor the Browns. Grammy Award-winning jazz cellist Eugene Friesen will host the concert at Pasadena Presbyterian Church onFriday, March 26, with all proceeds going to the Brown Scholarship. For ticket information, call Christa Reiff at 626.584.5489 or visit our webpage.

    The McKnight Endowment Fund for Neuroscience 2011 McKnight Neuroscience of Memory and Cognitive Disorders Awards 

    The McKnight Endowment Fund for Neuroscience supports innovative research designed to bring science closer to the day when diseases of the brain can be accurately diagnosed, prevented, and treated. To this end, the McKnight Neuroscience Memory and Cognitive Disorders Award assists scientists working to apply the knowledge achieved through basic research to human brain disorders that affect memory or cognition. 

    Use Of Award Funds: We are interested in proposals that address memory or cognition under normal and pathological conditions. This includes proposals that address mechanisms of memory or cognition at the synaptic, cellular, or behavioral level in animals, including humans. We are particularly interested in proposals that incorporate fundamentally new approaches. Collaborative and cross-disciplinary applications are encouraged.

    Projects restricted to the creation of conventional mouse knockouts in candidate disease genes identified by association studies, or to broadly overexpress those genes, are discouraged. In addition, projects to perform genetic interaction screens on disease genes in model organisms (yeast, worm, fly, fish) will not be considered, unless the project includes substantive specific aims that investigate the disease relevance of any new genes so discovered in human or mammalian model systems.

    Eligibility: Investigators who are United States citizens or lawful permanent residents conducting research at institutions within the United States are invited to apply. All PIs on the project must be U.S. citizens or have permanent resident status at the time of submission. Applicants must be in tenured or tenured-track, faculty positions. Applicants may not be employees of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute or scientists within the intramural program of the National Institutes of Health. Applicants may not hold another McKnight for Neuroscience Award that would overlap with the Memory and Cognitive Disorders Award. We are interested in geographical diversity and encourage applicants from all over the U.S. to apply. 

    Funds may be used toward a variety of research activities, but not the recipient’s salary. The PI's total laboratory funding (including PI and co-PI of all external grants) should be less than $700,000 in annual direct costs. The candidate’s other sources of funding will be considered when selecting awards.

    Selection Process: Instructions for applying can be found on the Foundation’s website: You may also email or call the office of The McKnight Endowment Fund for Neuroscience (; 612-333-4220). The deadline for submission is April 1, 2010. In mid-June, the selection committee will invite a small number of applicants to submit more detailed proposals, which will be due October 4, 2010. Funding begins February 1, 2011.

    Please email one PDF file and include the application form (linked below), the two-page project description, and a four-page NIH bio sketch to (References may be outside the two-page limit, but may be no more than two pages.) If you do not receive email confirmation of receipt of your LOI within a week of submission, please contact Eileen Maler at 612-333-4220;

    Application form (PDF, 499 KB)
    Application form (MS Word, 30 KB)

    The Endowment Fund will fund up to four awards, each providing $100,000 per year for three years. 

    Please note: The Memory and Cognitive Disorder Awards were formerly the Neuroscience of Brain Disorders Awards, established originally in 2000 as the Memory and Brain Disorders Awards. The shift to memory and cognitive disorders reflects the Endowment Fund's decision in 2010 to re-emphasize the focus on memory.

    Completed applications must arrive no later than April 1, 2010.

    The McKnight Endowment Fund
    for Neuroscience 
    710 South Second Street, Suite 400 
    Minneapolis, Minnesota 55401

    The Whitehall Foundation -- Grants for Research in Neurobiology
    The Whitehall Foundation is accepting applications throughout the year for grants to support basic research in neurobiology, especially on how the brain's sensory, motor, and other complex functions relate to behavior. 
    Candidates eligible for these grants include tenured or tenure-track professors at accredited American institutions.

    Deadlines for letters of intent to apply are due by January 15, April 15, and October 1; the three deadlines for applications during the year are June 1, September 1, and February 15.

    The total amount and number of awards is not specified, however, the amount of individual awards range from $30,000 to $75,000 each year for up to three years. View the full announcement:

    T32/T90 Neuroscience Training Grants at UCLA

    A number of training grants offer support to neuroscience graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. Appointments are generally made each year at the beginning of the project period, but can be made during the entire year. All inquiries and applications must be submitted by the faculty mentor. The BRI frequently sends out “Call for Nominations,” so please watch for announcements.

    T32/T90 Neuroscience Training Grants at UCLA

    Grant Number

    PI Name

    Project Title

    Number Pre/Post



    Arnold, Arthur

    Neuroendocrinology, Sex Differences, and Reproduction

    5 Pre
    2 Post



    Chesselet, Marie-Francoise

    Training Program in Neural Repair     

    2 Pre
    2 Post



    Cohen, Mark

    Comprehensive Training in Neuroimaging Fundamentals and Applications   

    5 Pre



    De Vellis, Jean

    Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities

    3 Pre
    5 Post



    Devaskar, Sherin

    Training in Neonatal and Developmental Diseases

    7 Post



    Dunkel Schetter, Christine

    Biobehavioral Issues in Physical and Mental Health

    3 Pre
    2 Post

    7/1 or 9/1


    Fanselow, Michael

    Training in Behavioral Neuroscience  

    3 Pre
    2 Post



    Feldman, Jack

    Training Program in Neural Microcircuits

    2 Pre
    2 Post



    Freimer, Nelson

    Training Grant in Neurobehavioral Genetics          

    4 Post



    Geschwind, Daniel

    Training Grant in Neurobehavioral Genetics

    4 Pre



    Glanzman, David

    Training Program in Molecular and Cellular Neurobiology

    4 Pre

    7/1-6/30 in 09


    Hinkin, Charles

    Neuropsychology AIDS Fellowship

    3 Post

    Start 7/1 thru 9/1


    Irwin, Michael

    Post-Graduate Training Program in Psychoneuroimmunology and Mental Disorders

    3 Post
    2 yrs



    Leuchter, Andrew

    Research Training: Psychobiological Sciences

    5 Post



    London, Edythe

    Training Program in Translational Neuroscience of Drug Abuse

    3 Pre



    Monbouquette, Harold

    Biotechnology Training in Biomedical Sciences

    5 Pre



    O'Dell, Thomas

    Cellular Neurobiology

    4 Post



    Rawson, Richard

    UCLA Drug Abuse Research Training Center

    2 Pre
    3 Post

    1 yr--Varies


    Tidball, James

    Training in Molecular, Cellular & Integrative Physiology

    4 Pre

    Oct 1
    1 year appt


    Travis, Gabriel

    Vision Research Training Grant

    6 Pre
    2 Post



    Bioscience Cores at UCLA (

    BRI Cores:
    Carol Moss Spivak Cell Imaging Facility*
    Confocal Microscopy
    For information, contact: 
    Dr. Matt Schibler X59783 (310-825-9783)

    Electron Microscopy and Specimen Preparation
    For information, contact:
    Marianne Cilluffo, x59848 (310-825-9848)

    Microscopic Techniques and Histological Preparation
    For information, contact:
    Marianne Cilluffo, x59848 (310-825-9848)

    * The BRI Carol Moss Spivak Cell Imaging Core has moved in with the Advanced Light Microscopy Core, directed by Shimon Weiss and Laurent Bentolila. After a decade of operation on the first floor of the Gonda, joining these two facilities will result in a technically sophisticated confocal core on campus with considerably up-graded equipment and increased capacity compared to our current facility. The facility will have enhanced capability for FRET, FLIM, FCS, 2-photon microscopy and small animal imaging (zebrafish, flies and C. elegans). This core is centrally located on the B floor of the new California Nanosystems Institute (CNSI) and will continue to be available to all faculty laboratories at UCLA. Dr. Matt Schibler who has admirably run the BRI core since its inception will continue to train users and run/maintain equipment in the new facility. For concerned regular users of the core please contact Matt if you require details of instrument availability in March and April; the exact date for completion of the move is not yet established. There should be little downtime since most of the new instruments are up and running. You may need to learn slight differences between the new confocals even though they run on the same software. At this time no increase in core usage fees is anticipated.

    Other Cores:
    Biopolymer Laboratory
    Peptide synthesis, amino acid analysis, Edman sequencing, mass spectrometry.
    For information contact:
    Margaret Condron x62088 (310.206.2088)

    Pasarow Mass Spectrometry Laboratory
    For information, contact:
    Dr. Kym Faull X67881 (310-206-7881)

    Research Resources Available:
    Postmortem Human Frozen Brain Tissue and Matched Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF) and Blood are Available for Scientists to Search for Etiopathogeneses of Human Disease.

    The National Neurological Research Specimen Bank and the Multiple Sclerosis Human Neurospecimen Bank, located at VA West Los Angeles Healthcare Center, maintains a collection of quick frozen and formalin fixed postmortem human brain tissue and frozen cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) from patients with neurological diseases (including Alzheimer's Disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, depressive disorder/suicide, epilepsy, Huntington's disease, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's Disease, progressive supranuclear palsy, schizophrenia, stroke/CVA and other less common diseases). Full inventory is available upon request. Diagnoses are documented by clinical medical records and gross/microscopic neuropathology.

    Special features of the Bank are as follows:

    1). Serial digital images of coronal sections (7 mm thick and obtained before quick freezing) are available for selecting samples to be studied.
    2). Microscopic neuropathology is available on each dissected sample and the dissected sample's localization is sketched on the gross coronal section image from which it came.
    3). Plaques of demyelination are classified as active, chronic active or inactive, and a shipment includes adjacent normal appearing white and nearby gray matter from the same case (they serve as a type of control).
    4). Ice artifact is minimized and it does not interfere with in situ hybridization or in situ PCR or immunocytochemistry.
    5). Tissue samples have been used for harvesting enough mRNA for microarray assay plates.
    6). CSF cells and cell-free CSF are available pre- and postmortem as is serum, plasma and buffy coats. They are stored quick frozen (full inventory is available upon request).

    The Bank is supported by NIH (NINCDS/NIMH), the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and Veterans Affairs West Los Angeles Healthcare Center. For further information on tissues/CSF available and how to access them, contact:

    Wallace W. Tourtellotte, M.D., Ph.D.
    Neurology Research (127A)
    VA West Los Angeles Healthcare Center
    11301 Wilshire Blvd
    Los Angeles, CA 90073
    (310) 268_4638; fax: (310) 268_4638

    Alzheimer's Disease Brain Tissue and CSF
    The Neuropathology Laboratory at UCLA Medical Center maintains a bank of frozen, formalin and paraformaldehyde-fixed and paraffin-embedded postmortem human brain tissues and frozen cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) from patients who die with Alzheimer's disease and other dementing and degenerative illnesses (including progressive supranuclear palsy, Parkinson's disease, fronto-temporal dementia), as well as control materials removed in a similar fashion from patients who are neurologically normal. Tissues are maintained as part of the NIA-funded Neuropathology Core functions of the UCLA Alzheimer's Disease Center. These tissues/fluids are available as a resource to investigators in any discipline. Pilot studies using the tissues/CSF to examine biomolecules that are of known importance in animal models and suspected significance in human neurodegenerative conditions are particularly encouraged. Every attempt will be made to provide research materials for worthwhile projects in a timely fashion. For further information on tissues/CSF available and how to access them, contact:

    Dr. Harry Vinters, Section of Neuropathology
    UCLA Medical Center, CHS 18-170
    Los Angeles, CA 90095-1732
    Phone: 310-825-6191; Fax: 310-206-8290


    Postdoctoral Position Available on the Training Program in Neural Repair at UCLA

    The Training Program in Neural Repair at UCLA is inviting applications for one available postdoctoral training position. Appointments on the training grant are for one year only and must begin on or before June 1, 2010. Trainees from all UCLA departments are eligible for support to work on scientific problems related to degeneration and repair of the nervous system. Faculty mentors must hold an Academic Senate Faculty position at UCLA. Nominations are accepted from Faculty mentors only. Applicants must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident of the U.S. at the time of the application. Trainees must have obtained their doctoral degree no more than 24 months before the date of the appointment. Trainees are required to participate in a weekly brown bag lunch seminar series, occasional workshop on innovative technologies, and biannual meetings with the program Steering Committee. Trainees must take an approved course in the responsible conduct of science during the period of support from the training grant. Applications must be sent to Mrs. Catherine Weston at, or delivered to Mrs. Weston at RNRC B114, UCLA, 710 Westwood Plaza, Los Angeles CA 90095. Letters of recommendations may be sent electronically to or faxed to 310-267-1786. Applications must include: a letter of nomination from the mentor, GPA and GRE scores of the applicant, NIH format biosketch of trainee and mentor, other support information for the mentor, a 2 page description of the research project and how it relates to Neural Repair; 2 letters of recommendation from individuals familiar with the applicants should be sent separately or included in a sealed envelope. Applications are due by February 28, 2010. For further information please contact Marie-Francoise Chesselet, Program Director at

    Postdoctoral Positions in the Laboratory of NeuroImaging at UCLA

    Two postdoctoral positions are available immediately in the Laboratory of Neuro Imaging, Department of Neurology to study the neural circuits and molecular plasticity underlying psychological stress and Alzheimer’s disease using a multi-disciplinary approach (neural tract tracing, genetic manipulation, and behavioral model). The candidate(s) are expected to have a strong background in molecular genetics or experimental neuroanatomy in rodents. Please send your CV and cover letter via email to Absolutely no calls.

    Staff Research Associate II Position at the UCLA Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior, UCLA

    Dr. Carrie Bearden’s laboratory is now hiring a full time research assistant to serve as a Magnetic Resonance (MR) Technician and analyze imaging data for an NIMH-funded research study on children and adolescents with neurogenetic conditions. The position will include being responsible for scanning subjects on fMRI, structural MRI and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) protocols and analyzing the resulting data using FSL, SPM, Matlab, and local structural imaging tools. In addition, the job will include recruitment and scheduling of research appointments for study participants, assisting in developing and updating IRB protocols, as well as basic behavioral data analysis. Applicants must be collaborative, able to work both independently and as part of a team, and able to prioritize and complete in a timely way work on multiple projects with competing requirements. The ability to communicate clearly and effectively verbally and in writing are important, as well as the ability to work and practice professional relationships with medical personnel, research subjects, patients and families. Strong computer skills including word processing, email systems, file transfer, spreadsheets, data entry, data base maintenance, including the ability to enter data and maintain study records are required. Previous experience with neuroimaging studies, particularly with pediatric populations, is strongly preferred. Working knowledge of Matlab, SPM, FSL, Unix, HTML, Javascript and experience in the field(s) of neuroscience, psychology, cognitive science or another closely related field are strongly preferred. To find out more and to apply for this position please visit, or send an email to: The job number is: H51925.

    Postdoctoral Position to Study Mechanisms of Retinal Ganglion Cell Degeneration in Mouse and Rat Models of Glaucoma

    A postdoctoral position is available to study the mechanisms of retinal ganglion cell degeneration in mouse and rat models of glaucoma in the Department of Ophthalmology at the UCLA School of Medicine. Interested individuals should have a published track record in biochemistry, molecular or cellular biology. Candidates with experience in vision research and working with small animal models of disease are preferred.

    Required Qualifications: A Ph.D. degree in one of the biological sciences, such as cell biology, molecular biology, or biochemistry; 2+ years of laboratory work experience including Western blotting, immunohistochemistry, real-time PCR, and confocal microscopy.; and strong communication skills and the ability to work in a team. The applicant must be able to independently plan and execute research activities including data collection, evaluation and analyses. Applicants must have current legal status to work in the US. Applications, including curriculum vitae and bibliography, a summary of past accomplishments, and the names and email addresses of three references, should be sent to: 
    Natik Piri, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Ophthalmology, Jules Stein Eye Institute, UCLA via email

    NIH-Funded Postdoctoral Position Available

    A NIH-funded postdoctoral position is available immediately for a junior Ph.D. graduate to study mechanisms of neural plasticity and repair. Projects are centered on the effects of dietary factors and exercise on synaptic plasticity and cognitive abilities, involving molecular and behavioral approaches. Productive experience in molecular biology or biochemistry is desirable. Send resume to:

    F. Gómez-Pinilla, Ph.D.
    Department of Physiological Science
    University of California, Los Angeles
    Los Angeles, CA 90095-1527


    The BRI regularly receives letters and resumes from people looking for work in the field of neuroscience. Below is an abbreviated list of the candidates and the type of work they seek. Copies of their resumes are often available in our editorial office. If you are interested in one or more of these individuals, please contact them directly, or call the editorial office at x56055.

    Ellen Fitzmorris received a B.S. degree in neuroscience with a German minor from UCLA in December 2008. Ellen would like to obtain a research assistant position for the next 2+ years as preparation for graduate school. Her undergraduate research experience consisted of birdsong investigations with Dr. Stephanie White, as well as brain imaging under Drs. Scott Fears and Arthur Toga. A copy of Ellen’s resume is available from the BRI editorial office. If interested, please contact Ellen directly at:

    Shyama Nair is a student at Hamilton College who will be graduating in May with a degree in neuroscience. Shyama has spent the past two summers conducting research in the Carmichael lab at the Geffen School of Medicine. Shyama would like to obtain a research assistant position at UCLA after graduation in preparation for applying to medical school. Shyama’s resume is available from the BRI editorial office, and a recommendation letter from Dr. Carmichael can be sent on request. If you are interested in Shyama please contact directly

    Rachel Reyes recently graduated from UC Irvine with a major in psychology and a minor in biological sciences and is currently in the process of applying to UCLA for the 2010 Fall quarter. Rachel would like to obtain a research lab assistant position at UCLA. She is most interested in the functions of the brain especially neural correlates of consciousness and mirror neurons, but is flexible and may be willing to volunteer in order to get a foot in the door. Rachel's CV is available in the BRI editorial office. If interested, please contact Rachel directly at:

    Noor Sharif is a second year undergraduate student in neuroscience at the University of Manchester in the UK. As a resident of Southern California, Noor will be here for two months between July and August. Noor would like to volunteer this summer in order to gain lab/research experience. Noor has a specific interest in brain imaging or studies of memory, but would love to work in any neuroscience-related lab. Noor is available 3-4 days a week, and hours are very flexible (anytime between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.). A copy of Noor’s resume is available from the BRI editorial office. If interested, please contact Noor directly at:


    Neuroscience News serves as the primary vehicle for disseminating information to the UCLA neuroscience community. It is published solely on the Brain Research Institute’s web site and distributed to the BRI Calendar E-mail list. Please submit all information to the BRI editorial office,, or call extension 56055 or 55061.

    Editor: Linda Maninger