Job ID: 104414

Studying the mammalian image-stabilization system

Position: Ph.D. Student

Deadline: 31 March 2023

Employment Start Date: 1 April 2023

Contract Length: Funding is available for four years and can be extended, if necessary.

City: Jerusalem

Country: Israel

Institution: Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Department: Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Neurobiology


A central challenge of the brain is to stabilize the image of the outside world on the retina to allow the detection of meaningful visual information. Image stabilization is accomplished by the generation of eye movements that counteract the motion of the retinal image (optic flow). One of the oculomotor reflexes that shape image-stabilizing eye movements is driven by visual signals arriving from direction selective ganglion cells (DSGCs) in the retina. DSGCs project differentially to nuclei of the accessory optic system (AOS), which plays a crucial role in the calculation of optimal image-stabilizing eye movements. This project will (1) explore the developmental and mechanistic basis of retinal direction-selectivity, and (2) reveal how signals from DSGC are integrated and processed within the AOS to ensure the calculation of optimal compensatory eye movements. We combine slice and retinal electrophysiology, serial electron microscopy, and global optic flow stimulation while in vivo recording from the AOS in the awake head-restrained mouse during eye movement tracking. These will be complemented with the utilization of an array of genetically modified mouse models and genetically-targeted neuronal manipulations.

Successful candidates will show solid communication skills in English, ability to work both independently and as part of a research team, strong scientific motivation, proved experience in Matlab or python programming. Experience in electrophysiology or optogenetics would be an advantage.

An application package, including a motivation letter, curriculum vitae, and a list of publications, should be sent to Dr. Shai Sabbah (