Five Ph.D. Positions in Neurosciences


Scuola Normale Superiore


Pisa, Italy

Principal Investigator

Antonino Cattaneo



The Neurosciences Ph.D. Program focuses on neural development and stem cell biology, synaptic and neural plasticity, aging, neurodegeneration, exploiting cutting-edge experimental approaches. Current research activities lead to therapeutic and diagnostic applications relevant for the neurological, neurodegenerative, and psychiatric pathologies that hit the human brain.

Current research themes include:

  • Biological functions of non-coding RNAs in the fine control of gene expression in neurons.
  • Stem cells and embryonic and adult neurogenesis.
  • Mechanisms of synaptic plasticity during development, in the adult nervous system and in response to brain injuries.
  • The control of critical periods for synaptic plasticity.
  • The biological mechanisms underlying aging, longevity, and the onset of age-related pathologies.
  • Mechanisms and molecular targets of neurodegenerative, psychiatric, and neurological pathologies.
  • Recombinant proteins of therapeutic interest for Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases.
  • New imaging technologies to visualize proteins of interest in living nerve cells, with high molecular selectivity and spatio-temporal precision.
  • Application of “omic” (genomic and proteomic) technologies to the study of the nervous system.
  • Intrabodies: molecular tools for phenotypic knockout and protein silencing, targeting conformational and post-translational modifications.

Complete applications should include: CV, degree thesis, a list of publications, a research project proposal, contacts of two referees, and must be submitted online by February 20, 2017. Applications will be screened by an evaluating committee and shortlisted candidates will be invited for an interview.

Students receive a four-year fellowship, a contribution for lodging, funding for travelling, and free access to the canteen. A minimum of one position will be awarded to students who obtained their degree outside Italy.

The Ph.D. course will start on November 1, 2017.

For more information on the Ph.D. program and application procedures visit the Laboratory of Biology website or the Scuola Normale superiore website.


  • To be born after after October 31, 1987.
  • To have achieved an Italian laurea magistrale or an equivalent foreign degree by October 31, 2017.