Job ID: 98748

PhD posotion in circuits neuroscience

Position: Ph.D. Student

Deadline: 9 December 2022

Employment Start Date: 1 January 2023

Contract Length: 3 years

City: Milan

Country: Italy

Institution: National research Council of Italy

Department: Institute of Neuroscience


The Silva lab is seeking a Doctoral Fellow to study:  Whole-brain circuits for fear attenuation

In the context of the Italian PhD program in “Theoretical and Applied Neuroscience” that involves multiple Italian universities and research centers, a PhD position is open at the National Research Council of Italy, Institute of Neuroscience, in Milano

This project, within the frame of EBRAINS Italy, will create whole-brain activity maps and causally test selected hubs mediating attenuation of fear memories in mice. In particular, we will dissect the neural circuits underlying the attenuation of real-life like traumatic memories induced by exposure to naturalistic threats. To this end, we will first compile a comprehensive atlas of brain activity underlying extinction of these ethological traumas by whole-brain activity mapping. These data will provide a substrate to generate brain-wide network organization models, which will be causally probed by pathway-specific chemogenetic and optogenetic manipulations. Subsequently, we will characterize the functional input-output connectome of ethological extinction centers using a combination of viral tracing, neuronal activity and optogenetically assisted circuit mapping. Lastly, we will investigate whether impairments at the level of these newly identified networks underlie extinction deficits at the basis of trauma-related disorders. The PhD student will be involved mainly in behavioral experiments, causal neuroscience, manipulations, tissue collection, microscopy and whole-brain activity data analysis. The PhD student will be also involved in international collaborations and will present his/her project in national and international conferences.

Research team and environment

The team in which the PhD will work is an ERC-funded group of around 2 PhD students (1 on this project) and 2 post-docs researchers in the field of causal circuit neuroscience.

The research will be developed in the Institute of Neuroscience of the National Research Council of Italy in the Neuroscience department of the Humanitas Research Hospital. The department directed by prof. Matteoli offers a wide variety of techniques and facilities ranging from in vivo and ex vivo physiology, neuroinflammation, neurodevelopment and advanced microscopy. The project foresees international mobility (active collaborations with Biozentrum, Basel and EPFL, Lausanne).

How to apply

This position is part of eBRAINS Italy and is part of the international school of advanced studies.The school (administratively coordinated by University of Camerino) hosts a novel national PhD school in theoretical and applied neuroscience hosting PhD students performing their project across affiliated laboratories all over Italy.

Doctoral School web page:

How to apply:

Application portal:

Further info about the lab can be found at:

or contact Bianca directly @