Positions Available at the NRB


A postdoctoral position is available at the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Intramural Research Program in the Neuroimaging Research Branch (NRB) to develop computational brain models of addiction. The candidate will participate in several projects in which various functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) techniques are employed in various models of drug dependence, with the goal of understanding the causations and consequences of chronic drug administration.

Initial research directions include: a) construct complex machine-learning models integrating multimodal imaging data (e.g. resting state fMRI, diffusion tensor imaging and tractography, quantitative morphometry, task-induced BOLD activation, MR spectroscopy, EEG) and non-imaging measures (e.g. genetics) toward the characterization and prediction of relevant addiction properties (e.g. relapse); b) construct network models of the mesocorticolimbic and prefrontal cortical systems to understand how addictive drugs usurp the normal function of dopaminergic signaling by modulating the networks and how abstinence and treatment induce plastic changes alter such networks; c) integrate multimodal imaging data in novel computational models to better understand the plastic neurobiological changes that occur with chronic drug use. One long-term goal of these projects is to better predict future drug use and treatment outcomes.  The candidate will also have the opportunity to develop additional research directions in collaboration with members of the NRB, other scientists at the NIDA-IRP and other labs within the NIH. The NRB is organized around close interactions between neuroscientists, physicists, clinicians and drug abuse experts.

The ideal candidate will have a doctoral degree, or equivalent, in applied mathematics, engineering, or neuroscience with an emphasis on computational approaches to the biology of complex neuronal systems. Knowledge of machine learning techniques such as Support Vector Machines or Random Forests is required. Multivariate modeling approaches such as structural equation modeling, Granger causality or graph theory is desirable. Programming in Matlab, python and/or C/C++ will be part of the project. Interested candidates should submit a CV, statement of research background and interests and names of references to:  Elliot A. Stein, Ph.D., Chief, Neuroimaging Research Branch, IRP/NIDA, 251 Bayview Blvd, Suite 200, Baltimore, MD 21224. Email: estein@mail.nih.gov

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