Job ID: 4334
PhD Student Synaptic Molecular Pathology in Cognitive Disorders
Position: Ph.D. Student
Deadline: 4 February 2021
Contract Length: 3 years
Institution: Biomedical Research Institute Sant Pau
Department: Molecular Physiology of the Synapse
TITLE: Synaptic Molecular Pathology in Cognitive Disorders.
SUMMARY: There is a growing body of data suggesting a central role of the synapse in psychiatric disorders. The existence of synaptic diseases or “synaptopathies” is increasingly accepted amongst the neuroscience community. Our studies on the human synapse have revealed it as a ‘hotspot’ for nervous system diseases, especially Intellectual Disability, Schizophrenia and Autism Spectrum Disorders (please see our papers in Nature Neuroscience, Molecular Psychiatry, Science Signalling, Neuron, Journal of Neuroscience, Nature Communications or Nature Reviews in Neuroscience; full publication list in lab web: www.molecular-synapse.org). Nevertheless, for most synaptopathies the underlying molecular pathophysiology is unknown. In this project we will investigate how dysfunctions of synaptic molecular mechanisms contribute to mental and behavioural disorders. We will focus in the forms of autism and intellectual disability caused by the genes SYNGAP1 and SHANK2. Identification of the key synaptic molecular pathways altered in these conditions will not only help us better understand the molecular roots of these conditions but also identify key proteins and signalling pathways for pharmacological intervention.