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Grenoble Institut des Neurosciences Grenoble Institut des Neurosciences

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PhD in cognitive neuroscience and intracerebral recordings

Job description:
The successful candidate will develop and test cognitive paradigms coupled with cortical and subcortical intracerebral recordings performed in human patients implanted with depth electrodes.

Requested expertise:
The PhD project is multidisciplinary. We expect the candidate to develop skills in: Psychology/cognitive neuroscience / Computer science & Signal processing / Computational modelling / knowledge of the decision-making literature / Electrophysiology. Excellent analytical skills (MATLAB) will also be required.

Project scientific summary:
Previous studies identified how decision variables were related to specific brain signals by combining computational modelling with a variety of tasks and neuroimaging techniques. However, how ongoing brain activity causally influence subject’s choices remains unknown. To clarify this issue in human, the PhD candidate will record intracerebral EEG signals from pharmaco-resistant patients while they perform value-based decision-making tasks. The PhD working hypothesis is that the manipulation of the level of baseline brain activity will impact subjects’ priors and thus bias their choices. To test this idea, we will trigger cognitive events as a function of brain activity in real-time through the use of a brain-computer interface.
The PhD project will extend recent findings in our group showing that opponent brain systems code rewarding vs. punishing events during choice and learning tasks. The main objectives of the PhD project will be to (1) identify the cortico-subcortical dynamics underlying cost/benefit decision-making by using real-time decoding of intracerebral signals while patients will perform a decision-making task (2) test how visual fixation influence choices and neural activity by simultaneously recordings gaze and iEEG data (3) investigate the functional importance of long range correlation between brain signals during decision-making. Overall, this project investigates value-based choices under a neuro-computational perspective that is highly innovative.

Host research group:
The main goal of the primary host research group (Brain Stimulation & Systems Neuroscience, PI: Olivier David; Phd Advisor: Julien Bastin) is to study large-scale brain networks in order to develop new applications of brain stimulation in the field of psychiatry, movement disorders and epilepsy using a translational approach based on clinical and preclinical research. The PhD fellow will be in constant interaction with other research groups working on decision-making, neuroscience and intracerebral EEG, and with the clinical staff that will recruit patients. Very close interactions between experimentalists, methodologists and clinicians, will offer an optimal environment to develop skills of young scientists.

Dr Julien Bastin, Assistant Professor, UGA,

  • Bastin, J., Polosan, M., Benis, D., Goetz, L., Bhattacharjee, M., Piallat, B., Krainik, A., Bougerol, T., Chabardès, S., and David, O. (2014). Inhibitory control and error monitoring by human subthalamic neurons. Transl. Psychiatry 4, e439.
  • Bastin, J., Deman, P., David, O., Gueguen, M., Benis, D., Minotti, L., Hoffman, D., Combrisson, E., Kujala, J., Perrone-Bertolotti, M., et al. (2017). Direct Recordings from Human Anterior Insula Reveal its Leading Role within the Error-Monitoring Network. Cereb. Cortex 27, 1545–1557.
  • Corlier, J., Rimsky-Robert, D., Valderrama, M., Lehongre, K., Adam, C., Clémenceau, S., Charpier, S., Bastin, J., Kahane, P., Lachaux, J.-P., et al. (2016). Self-induced intracerebral gamma oscillations in the human cortex. Brain 139, 3084–3091.

Eligibility criteria:
Applicants must hold a Master's degree (or be about to earn one) or have a university degree equivalent to a European Master's (5-year duration).

Application procedure:
Applicants will attach a single .PDF file including:
  • Their CV and a cover letter / letter of motivation / name of at least two referees
  • A brief summary of previous work done/publications in Master will be included in the cover letter
  • A record of the grades and relative rank during their Master degree (year 1 and 2 separately)
  • A copy of their last diploma
Address to send their application:

Selection process:
Applications will be evaluated through a three-step process:
  1. Eligibility check of applications will be performed until application deadline.
  2. 1st round of selection: the applications will be evaluated by a Review Board in August 23rd 2019. Results will be given in August 26th 2019.
  3. 2nd round of selection: shortlisted candidates will be invited for an interview session in Grenoble on september 2019, if necessary (or via skype meetings).


Mise à jour le 9 juillet 2019


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