Connecting European Neuroscience

Ph.D. Student in Genova/Italy

22 May 2020

Ph.D. Student in Genova/Italy

Job ID


IIT has established a collaboration with Università degli studi di Padova and funds #1 scholarship on the topic: “The epigenetic landscape of sleep” at the Phd Course in Neuroscience of the University. The proposed research theme is the following:
Epigenetic marks across the genome influence sleep and daily rhythms imposed by the Earth’s rotation around its axis (circadian clock). Over the last decade, our lab provided the first direct evidence that genomic imprinting is an important player in sleep regulation, and we demonstrated that which parent a gene came from can influence the sleep profile. Genomic imprinting is well-known in epigenetics as a mark across the genome causing the expression pattern of an allele to depend on its parental origin (see Tucci et al., Cell. 2019 Feb 21;176(5):952-965). Further investigation in the genomic imprinting hypothesis of sleep is instrumental to understand sleep biology in mammals. This parent-of-origin epigenetic aspect was never considered in sleep and circadian studies before. Imprinted genes are highly expressed in the suprachiasmatic nucleus of the hypothalamus, which serves as the main master clock, and in the hypothalamus and frontal cortex, in which specific circuitries serve as the sleep-wake centres of the brain. The hypothesis that imprinting has set an evolutionary agenda for the physiology of mammalian sleep has been an attractive idea that now urges a systematic explorations. Therefore, driven by this hypothesis, the PhD candidate will address the following question: how epigenetic inheritance impacts neuronal responses in the brain during sleep.
In order to apply for these positions, it is mandatory to refer to the procedures administered by the Università degli studi di Padova. The official procedure is available at this link:

Job Information

Closing date:
Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia
Neuroscience - Genetics and Epigenetics of Behavior

Contact Information

Valter Tucci
Via Morego 30

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