Predoctoral (PhD student) position in Life Sciences

Grand Forks, North Dakota
Commensurate with qualifications/experience
December 30 2020
Position Type
Full Time
Organization Type

Predoctoral (PhD student) position in Life Sciences (virology and neuroscience)

The Yakoub Lab at the University of North Dakota is looking to fill one or more PhD student positions. We are looking for motivated, highly enthusiastic candidates who have shown outstanding academic and life accomplishments, and who have a deep passion for solving some of the most mysterious science questions or problems and pursuing an academic career track. Previous research experience and research skills and publications are a plus.

The PhD student will endeavor to solve some of the most important problems in science and medicine today, using cutting-edge technologies, including CRISPR-Cas gene editing, stem cells, and human brain organoids (“human mini-brains in a dish”) and genetically engineered humanized mouse models. Examples of our current research interests include:

(1) Uncovering the molecular mechanisms of viral pathogenesis for devastating viruses like SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19), and neurotropic viruses that attack the human brain and cause congenital birth defects or intellectual disorders, such as Zika virus and cytomegalovirus

(2) Developing viral tools and technologies to trace human brain circuitry and map out the cellular/molecular bases for behavior at single-cell and single-molecule levels

(3) Determining the molecular mechanisms of neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative diseases (e.g. autism, and Alzheimer’s disease), using cutting edge technologies such as stem-cell derived human neurons, human brain organoids and genetically engineered humanized mouse models

(4) Understanding human-specific brain development including the impact of certain genes or processes (e.g. autophagy) on evolution and development of the human brain and the advanced cognitive, intellectual and language abilities

(5) Next-generation neuropharmacology: performing single-cell and single-synapse neuropharmacology by developing tools to deliver drugs to certain cell types or synapses in the brain to enhance potency and specificity and reduce the devastating side-effects of CNS and psychotropic drugs

To be considered for this position, please send your CV to Prof. Abraam Yakoub at

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