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Gene x Environment Interactions Modifying Neuronal Development and Function

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  • Full or part time
    Dr J MacDonald
  • Application Deadline
    Applications accepted all year round
  • Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)
    Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

Project Description

A PhD project is available in the laboratory of Dr. Jessica MacDonald in the Department of Biology at Syracuse University. The broad goal of the research in the MacDonald lab is to understand genetic and epigenetic mechanisms that regulate development and function of the neocortex, and how life-long environmental exposures (such as nutritional factors) intersect with fixed genetic susceptibilities to alter neuronal development and function. We employ in vivo and in vitro animal models, and an array of molecular and cellular biological and microscopy approaches, to study how different genetic disruptions and environmental/ nutritional factors modify neuronal development and function, throughout the lifespan of an organism. We are particularly interested in disruptions in these mechanisms that lead to neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism, and one current focus of the lab is the severe neurological disorder Rett syndrome, which is caused by mutations in the epigenetic regulator MeCP2. For more information, please visit the lab website at: http://asfaculty.syr.edu/pages/bio/MacDonald-Jessica.html

Funding Notes

Application Deadline: Until December 15th 2015, we will be accepting applications for start date of end of August 2016. After this we will start to accept applications for a start date of end of August 2017. However, late applications for August 2016 may be considered.

If you are interested in applying, please submit a pre-application to http://biology.syr.edu/graduate/pre-app.html

Students in Cell Biology, Developmental Biology, Genetics, and Neuroscience rotate in 2-3 labs in the first year and then choose one for PhD. For a list of other Developmental Biology and Neuroscience labs at Syracuse University, see http://biology.syr.edu/research/research.html

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