Job ID: 116956

Neural Circuits for Social Behavior in Zebrafish

Position: Post-doctoral Position

Deadline: 30 November 2023

Employment Start Date: 1 January 2024

Contract Length: 1+2+2 yeares

City: Lausanne

Country: Switzerland

Institution: University of Lausanne



The group of Johannes Larsch invites applications for a postdoctoral position to work on neuronal circuits underlying extreme social affiliation. In the laboratory, we study circuit mechanisms and genetic factors controlling how animals detect and integrate sensory cues to guide affiliative social behavior. We have previously identified visual circuits that are tuned to conspecific motion and required for social attraction. Our current work traces this signal deeper into the brain and investigates zebrafish with extreme social behavior that emerged from mutant screening and experimental evolution.


Job information

Expected start date in position: 01.01.2024 / to be agreed

Contract length: 1 year, renewable 2 x 2 years, maximum 5 years

Activity rate: 100%

Workplace: University of Lausanne, Dorigny campus


Your responsibilities

The fellow will work towards defining circuit mechanisms and/or genetic factors controlling shoaling in wild type zebrafish, and in lines with divergent social behavior. The lab offers access to cutting edge techniques and expertise for neuronal activity mapping (2-photon microscopy, whole-brain in-situ hybridization in cleared tissue, chemogenetics and optogenetics), behavioral analysis in virtual reality systems, and quantitative genetics (WGS, QTL mapping). The fellow will be expected and supported to formulate a unique research program matching the interests of the applicant with the lab’s focus.

The fellow can gain teaching and mentoring experience through contributions to undergraduate and graduate teaching programs and the supervision of student projects.


Your qualifications

In order to complete our team, we are looking for someone with the following skills :

  • Completed PhD or about to graduate.
  • Expertise in optical neurophysiology and/or genetic mapping.
  • Record of creating customized, innovative approaches to study novel aspects of biology.
  • Demonstrated experience in advanced microscopy, programming, and quantitative skills to analyze large datasets (behavior, neural activity, genomic) are assets.
  • Excellent command of oral and written English.


What the position offers you

We offer a supportive, inclusive, and collaborative environment dedicated to scientific rigor and personal development. The Center for Integrative Genomics is a highly interdisciplinary institute and in direct vicinity to our colleagues, including from the department of Ecology and Evolution, Computational Biology, Fundamental Neuroscience, and the EPFL. The lab is located on the beautiful Dorigny campus of the University of Lausanne, within walking distance to Lake Geneva, lively cafeterias, and sports facilities. Our working language is English and UNIL offers French language courses on all levels free of charge to enable immersion into the multicultural life of Lausanne for newcomers. The position comes with a competitive premier assistant salary that includes research, and limited teaching and training responsibilities. For details see:


Contact for further information

Prof. Johannes Larsch, email:


Your application

Deadline : 30.11.2023

Please, send your full application in Word or PDF.

The complete application should contain:

  • Motivation letter
  • Detailed CV, including contact information for at least two referees who can attest to your work.

Only applications through the UNIL website can be taken into account.

We thank you for your understanding.


Additional information

UNIL is committed to equal opportunities and diversity.

UNIL supports early career researchers.