Postdoc Position – Hair Cell Biophysics – Institut Curie
Research Project: We study mechano-sensitivity by the cellular microphones of the inner ear‒the hair cells. Each hair cell is endowed with a beautiful tuft of elongated microvilli‒the hair bundle, which works both as a frequency-selective receptor antenna and mechanical amplifier for sound stimuli. We ask how the morphological organization of the stereocilia within a hair bundle, mechanical coupling between individual stereocilia, as well as key physiological parameters, condition the collective gating of the transduction channels and thus mechanosensitivity of the hair bundle. Specifically, this project aims (i) at monitoring individual movements of the stereocilia within a hair bundle upon abrupt tip-link disruption and in response to fluid-jet stimulation, (ii) at studying how fluid-structure coupling in the hair bundle can influence these movements, (iii) at clarifying how the mechanosensitivity of the hair bundle can be modulated the extracellular Ca2+ concentration in the fluid bathing the hair bundle and the transepithelial potential that is present in mammalian auditory organs, and (iv) at developing an ‘ear on a chip’, i.e. a microfluidic device, to better mimic the natural environment of mammalian cochlea hair cells in vitro. The project is funded by the “Fondation pour l’Audition”.
Expected Profile: We are looking for a highly-motivated young researcher with a PhD degree. Both experimental physicists and biologists dedicated to quantitative approaches are welcome. Candidates should have a strong desire to work at the interface between physics and biology on living cells and a demonstrated ability for independent, quantitative, and creative thinking. Prior experience in cell or biomolecule mechanics, with the cytoskeleton, sensory systems (electrophysiology), or mechano-biology is a plus. The project highly relies on microscopy, micromanipulation, and physiology of cells.
Environment: The Institut Curie offers a highly collaborative, interdisciplinary, and creative environment. The department Physico-Chimie Curie is internationally recognized as a premiere center for physical approaches of biological problems. It is conveniently located at the heart of the Latin Quarter, in central Paris.
Advisor: Pascal MARTIN
Research team: Active Mechano-Sensitivity by Hair Cells in the Inner Ear
Research department: https://science.institut-curie.org/research/multiscale-physics-biology-chemistry/umr168-physical-chemistry/
Deadline for application: April 1, 2021 or until fullfilled (available immediately).
Duration: 24 months.
Where: Institut Curie, Paris, France.
To apply, please send a short letter describing your motivations and past achievements, a curriculum vitae, and one or two letters of reference. CONTACT: Pascal.Martin@curie.fr
To apply for this job email your details to Pascal.Martin@curie.fr