PhD position

PhD-project in electrophysiology: Closed-loop Transcranial Electric Stimulation of Neural Networks in a Rodent Model of Psychosis Transition.

Publication date: June 17, 2020

Location: Strasbourg (France)

Patients suffering from schizophrenia develop resistance to chemical treatments. Transcranial electrical stimulation (TES), a non-invasive neurophysiological approach, has been shown to alleviate some symptoms, to improve cognitive performances, and to modulate the corticothalamic connectivity. The goal of the project is to optimize a combination of stimulation parameters that make it efficient for the TES against the psychosis transition using predictive electrical biomarkers. In healthy humans and rodents, ketamine reproduces, with a single psychotomimetic dose, the abnormal amplification of corticothalamic gamma-frequency (30-80 Hz) oscillations recorded in individuals having a high-risk mental state for a psychosis transition. Gamma oscillations are naturally involved in cognition, which is also disrupted in at-risk patients. It was demonstrated that the ketamine-induced gamma hyperactivity is prevented by the antipsychotic clozapine.

The Ph.D. student will experimentally investigate the TES in the ketamine rodent model of psychosis transition. In an attempt to optimize a combination of stimulation parameters with potential preventive/curative effects, the Ph.D. student will develop and build up a closed-loop feedback system that controls the TES optimally using a Kalman filter.



Requested skills:

The ideal candidate will have a strong background in neuroscience, preferably with experience in in-vivo electrophysiological techniques, mathematical and statistical skills for data analysis (EEG and cellular), and basic knowledge in numerical programming and neural modelling.

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