Tag Archives: neuroscience

An Evening with Neuroscience, Friday, May 23


On Friday, May 23rd, a panel of University of Washington neuroscientists will hang out and discuss up-and-coming research, their favorite stories and myths, and a brainy joke or two.

Come join the Grey Matters Journal for a fun and informal discussion. This event is open to everyone – no neuroscience background needed! During the first 60 minutes, the panelists will discuss topics submitted by the public (submit your question via the Grey Matters website). Then, we will open a few floor microphones for the audience to ask questions (or share their favorite brain joke).


Date: May 23, 2014
Time: 7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Location: The HUB Lyceum at the University of Washington (map).
Cost: FREE

Research Opportunity: Genetics of pediatric epilepsy

Con­tact Name: Heather Mefford

Con­tact Email: hmefford[at]uw.edu

Depart­ment: Pediatrics, Genetic Medicine


Our lab uses genomic technologies to discover genetic causes of pediatric epilepsy syndromes and other disorders. Opportunities for projects include candidate gene sequencing to identify mutations, chromosome microarrays for copy number variant discovery, setting up functional assays to study the function of new epilepsy genes and bioinformatics analysis of sequence data to explore different models of inheritance.




Background in biological sciences
Able to commit 10-15 hrs per week minimum
Previous lab experience helpful but not required

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Research Opportunity: Androgen mediated neuroprotection in song birds

Con­tact Name: Ralf Luche

Con­tact Email: rluche[at]uw.edu

Depart­ment: Psychology


The neuronal circuit that regulates birdsong during mating season also involves seasonal changes in the birdbrain that are dependent on testosterone and convey both neuroprotection and neurogenesis. Thus, the bird brain offers a unique model system to investigate these androgen dependent pathways with the ultimate goal to improve therapeutic intervention following traumatic brain injury.

Specifically, this project would involve cellular and molecular techniques for the detailed analysis and select disregulation of signaling components within these pathways. Interested students would be provided with relevant training in molecular and cellular biology techniques and depending on their level of commitment, may also be given the opportunity to develop their own project.


Dedicated undergraduate students at a sophomore or junior level with relevant coursework and the ability to devote 10 or more hours per week for at least one year to this project.  Previous experience working in a laboratory setting highly desirable.

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Research Opportunity: Dissecting the molecular, cellular and physiological mechanisms of neuronal death in mitochondrial disease

Con­tact Name: Albert Quintana

Con­tact Email: albertq[at]uw.edu

Depart­ment: Pediatrics/Seattle Children’s Research Institute


Every single cell in our body requires energy to survive. Mitochondria are the powerhouses of the cell. Accordingly, mutations in the mitochondrial machinery involved in energy generation lead to a group of progressive, untreatable and usually fatal pathologies affecting 1:500 births.

High-energy consuming organs, such as the brain are usually affected. However, there is a high degree of specificity in the type of neurons affected and it is not currently known what drives some neurons to survive (or to die) when faced with a mitochondrial mutation.

Our lab uses a mouse model of mitochondrial disease that recapitulates the human pathology. Our goal is to use different tools (mouse genetics, molecular biology, pharmacology, optogenetics) to identify the mechanisms driving neuronal fate in the context of mitochondrial disease. If we can identify the genes and factors altered in affected neurons, we could propose potential treatments for mitochondrial disease.

Interested students will participate in all aspects of research (from animal husbandry to performing the experiments), will expose and discuss their results and be active part of any potential publications.

This project could provide a great opportunity to gain experience in a research setting.


Basic knowledge in Neurobiology
Basic knowledge in Molecular Biology
Willingness to work with animal models (mice)
Willingness to commute to Seattle Children’s Research Institute (9th Ave and Stewart)
Prior lab experience is a plus
15-18 hours/week

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Research Opportunity: Neurobiology of Drug Addiction

Con­tact Name: Dr. C Chavkin

Con­tact Email: cchavkin[at]uw.edu

Depart­ment: Pharmacology


The lab is funded to study how stress increases the risk of drug addiction at the cellular, molecular and behavioral levels.  We use western blots, cell culture, simple mouse behavioral approaches.

We have opportunities for responsible and advanced undergraduates to learn research techniques by assisting a graduate student and a post doctoral fellow in their research. These are volunteer projects.

We also have a paid lab assistant (hourly) job for someone interested in helping us care for mice and do PCR genotyping.


  • Biochemistry
  • Science GPA >3.4
  • Willingness to commit to working >10hrs/wk and for at least 2 quarters (hopefully 4)

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Research Opportunity: Effect of Antiplatelet Therapy on Emergency Neurosurgery Outcomes

Con­tact Name: Alex Lee

Con­tact Email: leeat[at]uw.edu

Depart­ment: UW Medicine, Anesthesiology


We are a team of UW anesthesiologists performing a retrospective medical chart review to study whether aspirin taken preoperatively as a chronic medication causes any adverse impact in terms of outcome after emergency neurosurgical procedures. We are looking for a student who is willing to review electronic medical records and enter data on blood loss, medical history and outcomes during hospitalization into a spreadsheet. The project also comes with the opportunity to help write and become one of the secondary authors of a research paper for eventual publication.


Interest in medicine is a must, and prior experience with volunteering/working in a hospital would be helpful. Mostly, we need someone conscientious and diligent who can do a careful job with chart review.

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Research Opportunity: Molecular Neuroimaging

Con­tact Name: Satoshi Minoshima, MD, PhD

Con­tact Email: minoshim[at]uw.edu

Depart­ment: Radiology


Our laboratory focuses on molecular neuroimaging research concerning dementia, head trauma, and cancer using state-of-the-art imaging technologies such as MRI and PET imaging.  There are various on-going research projects encompassing preclinical (basic sciences) to clinical studies.  For those who are interested in molecular imaging research, neurosciences, radiochemistry, and computer-assisted image analysis, we would be happy to discuss potential projects.


Familiar with computer systems and common software

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Research Opportunity: Brain Imaging Biomarkers of Neurodegeneration and Injury

Con­tact Name: Donna Cross

Con­tact Email: dcross[at]uw.edu

Depart­ment: Radiology


My lab uses brain imaging modalities such as MRI and PET to investigate neurodegenerative processes and the physiological consequence of brain injury in animal models as well as human subjects. We currently have several projects in these areas that might be suitable for undergraduate research. Potential student benefits include technical skills and knowledge of imaging sciences.


Student applicants should be comfortable with analytical computing environments. Background and/or interests in basic statistics, computer programming, animal behavioral research and tissue processing would be beneficial. 10-15 hours/week commitment

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Research Opportunity: Early Childhood Cognition Lab

Con­tact Name: Miranda Sitch

Con­tact Email: sitchm[at]uw.edu

Depart­ment: Psychology


The Early Childhood Cognition Lab (ECCL) conducts research on how infants and children learn about their own and others’ behavior. Our projects are organized around two main themes: infants’ early social cognition, and infants’ understanding of cause and effect relations, and the mechanisms that support development in these domains. Our research uses both behavioral measures (e.g., habituation techniques, problem-solving paradigms) and neuroscience measures (e.g., event-related potentials and EEG). Our 499s typically devote 6 or 9 hours per week for 2 or 3 credits. Training is provided, and 499s have the opportunity to learn a wide range of research skills. We give preference to students who have daytime availability in at least 3 hour blocks. Experience working with children and previous coursework in developmental psychology and research design is preferable but not required.

If you are interested in applying to our lab, download an application from our website, http://depts.washington.edu/eccl/studentinfo.html#499 and email the completed application to eccl@uw.edu.


6 hours per week
2 quarter commitment

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Computational Neuroscience Program

Do you want to know how the brain works?

Do you have a taste for or interest in math or programming? Would you like to learn more about how you can apply mathematical methods to analyze the workings of the mind or build neural interfaces? The Computational Neuroscience program is a two-year program consisting of a set of required courses and opportunities to participate in paid research in laboratories working on theoretical and quantitative neuroscience. Our goal is to encourage and enable you to cross disciplinary boundaries to address questions concerning the algorithms of computation in nervous systems—from single neurons to behavior. We are looking for students with a good quantitative background, an active curiosity and an interest in delving into basic neurobiology in a quest to unravel the workings of the brain.comp_neuro

The program will be appropriate for two types of applicants:

  • Students interested in completing the neurobiology major who have or are willing to undertake some mathematical or computational courses to improve their analytical and modeling skills;
  • Students in a quantitative major such as CSE, EE, Applied Mathematics, Statistics or Physics who are willing to take courses to obtain a solid grounding in neurobiology

Special benefits of the program include mentoring and access to research opportunities.

Please visit our website at http://compneuro.washington.edu/ to learn more about the program, our students and the research of faculty who are associated with it. Important dates:

INFORMATION SESSION 4pm October 7th in Johnson 102.

Applications are due OCT 11th.