Research Fellow in Neurodevelopment Ref 10892

School/department: Brighton and Sussex Medical School
Hours: Full time considered up to a maximum of 1 FTE. Requests for flexible working options will be considered (subject to business need).
Location: Brighton, United Kingdom
Contract: Fixed term for 3 years  
Reference: 10892
Salary: starting at £36,333 to £43,155 per annum pro rata if part time
Placed on: 21 February 2023
Closing date: 04 April 2023. Applications must be received by midnight of the closing date. 
Expected Interview date: 20 April and 21 April 2023.
Expected start date: May 2023 or as soon as possible thereafter. 

Job description

Project: Hox genes and the diversification of neural networks

Applications are invited from highly motivated individuals who are interested in fundamental mechanisms of neuronal development. The Postdoctoral Research Fellow position is available to work with Dr. Jimena Berni and her group at the Brighton and Sussex Medical School, University of Sussex. The position is fully funded by the BBSRC for three years, to start in April 2023 or as soon as possible thereafter.

Our research objective is to radically push forward our understanding on the mechanism of circuit diversification. We use Drosophila as a model system and investigate how Hox genes orchestrate the diversification of motor circuits during nervous system development.

We approach this question at three levels:

1)  Circuit: To define the fundamental differences subserving the specialization of circuits.

2)  Function: To show how divergent connectivity patterns modify neuronal function.

 3) Genetic: To analyse the role of Hox genes in the specification of circuit assembly and function.

The post provides an outstanding opportunity to develop and apply research skills in developmental neuroscience using a range of techniques pioneered in the lab (calcium imaging, thermo-/opto- genetics, CRISPR/cas9, behavioural experiments) as well as working with collaborators: Electron microscopy neuronal reconstructions with Prof. Albert Cardona (Univ. of Cambridge and MRC-LMB), and electrophysiology experiments with Prof. Richard Baines (Univ. of Manchester).

Candidates with a strong background in developmental neuroscience or neurobiology and with experience performing anatomical and functional neuronal analysis are encouraged to apply. Experience working with Drosophila, in genetics, imaging, behavioural experiments and/or molecular biology would be an advantage. The successful candidate should be capable of working independently on this project, whilst integrated into an interactive and supportive research group.

The Berni lab is part of Sussex Neuroscience, a highly collaborative and interdisciplinary community of over 50 neuroscience researchers that organises a wide range of scientific and career development activities.

Please contact Dr Jimena Berni (  for informal enquiries.

Visit our website: 

The University is committed to equality and valuing diversity, and applications are particularly welcomed from women and black and minority ethnic candidates, who are under-represented in academic posts in Science, Technology, Engineering, Medicine and Mathematics (STEMM) at Sussex.

The University of Sussex values the diversity of its staff and students and we welcome applicants from all backgrounds.

You can find out more about our values and our EDI Strategy,  Inclusive Sussex, on our webpages.

Download job description and person specification 10892 [PDF 52.37KB]

The University requires that work undertaken for the University is performed from the UK. 

Visa Sponsorship Queries:

  • "This role has been assigned an eligible SOC code and meets the salary requirements for Skilled Worker Sponsorship if full time. Please consult our Skilled Worker Visa information page  for further information about Visa Sponsorship."

How to apply

Download our academic application form [DOC 199.50KB] and Personal Details and Equal Opportunities Form [DOC 119.50KB] and fill in all sections.

Email your completed application, and personal details and equal opportunities form, to

You should attach your application form and all documents to the email in PDF format (we are unable to accept applications as or .pages) and use the format job reference number / job title / your name in the subject line.

You can also send your application by post to Human Resources Division, Sussex House, University of Sussex, Falmer, Brighton, BN1 9RH.

You might also be interested in: