Team ‘Spinal Cord and Cerebrospinal fluid Interface (SpiCCI)’ (N. Wanaverbecq)
Institut de Neurosciences de la Timone (INT) UMR 7289 CNRS-AMU (Dir. Guillaume Masson)
Campus de la Timone, INT, 27 boulevard Jean Moulin, 13005 Marseille, France
in Neuroscience & Neurophysiology
The project aims at deciphering, anatomically and functionally, the circuitry of a poorly understood neuronal population present around the central canal (CC) of the mammalian spinal cord and in contact with the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF-cNs).
Spinal CSF-cNs are present in all vertebrate, they are bipolar neurons sitting under the ependymal cell layer, extend a single dendrite ending with a large protrusion in the CC and project an axon through the parenchyma1–3. They selectively express a ‘Transient Receptor Potential’ (TRP) isoform (PKD2L1) with a potential role as sensory receptor1,4–7. Recent studies in lower vertebrates point to a role as neuromodulator of motor activity for CSF-cNs6,7 but this function remains to be demonstrated in mammals and will be one of the goal of the proposed project.
The Host Team (4 faculty members, 1 Technical assistant and 1 PhD student) was one of the first to characterize CSF-cN properties in the mouse and established as leader in the field with a long-standing expertise in cellular neurophysiology and imaging. By using a set of transgenic mouse models (Cre-Lox technology from PKD2L1-Cre mice) enabling the selective manipulation of CSF-cNs, our team develops a multidisciplinary approach combining in vitro and ex-vivo electrophysiology with Ca2+ imaging, optogenetic as well as viral antero- and retrograde neuronal tracing.
SpiCCI is a young dynamic team that was recently created at the INT a major neuroscience research center in Marseille with a highly interdisciplinary environment consisting of 11 research groups and state-of-the-art facilities in photonic imaging, molecular/cellular biology and virology as well as a core facility in IT and scientific computing.
The Project is part of an international ANR grant (300 k¤ over 3 years) in collaboration with Dr Niccolo ZAMPIERI, group leader at the Max Delbrück Center in Berlin (Germany) and expert in targeted viral neuronal tracing approaches in spinal cord preparations. The principal objective of the project will be to characterize CSF-cN circuitry in the spinal cord, demonstrate its interaction with the spinal motor network and characterize the role of CSF-cNs in mammalian CNS.
We are looking for a motivated young research fellow interested in studying synaptic transmission and analysing functional circuitry and sensory integration in the spinal cord.
The successful Candidate, with less than 3-year postdoctoral experience, will have a PhD in neuroscience and a proven expertise in slice patch-clamp electrophysiological recording and imaging. She/He should have experience in small animal surgery (Animals Training Course). A background in molecular biology (transgenic mouse model, viral neuronal tracing techniques) as well as knowledge in programming and analysis software (eg. Python, Matlab, R statistic) would be a plus.
The project will be conducted under Dr Wanaverbecq supervision, but the candidate should quickly gain autonomy and be capable of conducting the assigned line of research.
The position is to be filled as soon as possible and has 2 years of initial funding (Salary depending on experience and based on Aix Marseille Université pay scheme), with the possibility for extension.
Applicants should send :
a Cover letter detailing their research experience and interests to join the team,
and contact details for at least 2 references
For more details contact Dr Wanaverbecq.
1. Orts-Del’Immagine, A. et al. PloS One 9, e87748 (2014).
2. Djenoune, L. et al. Front. Neuroanat. 8, 26 (2014).
3. Jalalvand, E et al. J. Comp. Neurol. 522, 1753–1768 (2014).
4. Orts-Del’immagine, A. et al. J. Physiol. 590, 3719–3741 (2012).
5. Orts-Del’Immagine, A. et al. Neuropharmacology 101, 549–565 (2016).
6. Jalalvand, E. et al. Curr. Biol. CB 26, 1346–1351 (2016).
7. Böhm, U. L. et al. Nat. Commun. 7, 10866 (2016).