Postdoctoral Research Associate


Website Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine

POSITION TITLE: Postdoctoral Research Associate /306-NN


APPOINTMENT STATUS: Academic; Faculty (+) (Fixed Term) Not OT Eligible; Temporary; FTE 100%

ORGANIZATION AND LOCATION: Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine

Department Name: Department of Translational Medicine and Physiology
City, State, Zip: Spokane, WA 99202

REPORTS TO: Prof. Dr. Marcos G. Frank

Summary of Duties:

The Frank Laboratory for Sleep Regulation and Function is seeking an outstanding Postdoctoral Research Associate to conduct research into the interactions between glia, neurons and sleep in brain development, synaptic plasticity, and neurodegenerative disease. The Postdoctoral Research Associate will join a diverse group of neuroscientists and sleep biologists at Washington State University and will have the opportunity to work with cutting-edge neuroscience techniques, including 2-photon microscopy in vivo, optogenetics and genomic/proteomic platforms.

He/she will be involved in ongoing neurobiological research in a variety of vertebrate models and will lead independent research projects. More specifically, the Postdoctoral Research Associate will plan and conduct brain plasticity and behavioral/sleep/circadian experiments using in vivo and in vitro approaches and prepare the results for dissemination via peer-reviewed scientific articles and presentations at scientific meetings.

DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITES: (note (E) indicates an Essential Function)

75% Research (E)
Plan and conduct experiments and related research directed toward ultimate publication, prepare articles for publication. Participate in grant writing efforts, including seeking self-funding. Work with graduate and/or undergraduate research assistants in conducting research projects.

20% Presenting Data/Publications
Analyze, interpret, and disseminate findings through peer-reviewed scientific publications (first or corresponding author) and/or via conference oral and/or poster communications.

5% Service-Other
Evaluate scientific papers and publications, provide training to junior laboratory staff where applicable. Other duties as assigned.

An earned PhD in Neuroscience, Biology, or other related discipline.



  • Experience in designing and executing original research in neuroscience using in vivo approaches.
  • Strong quantitative skills, including experience with a variety of multivariable analytic techniques
  • Proficiency in one or more programming languages for analysis of large datasets and data processing (e.g., SAS, STATA, R, Python, MATLAB).
  • Experience in the use of transgenic animals, optogenetics, single and multi-unit electrophysiology (Plexon) or chemogenetics in vivo.
  • Experience in designing and executing circadian and/or sleep experiments.
  • Experience in genomic and proteomic studies of the brain.
  • Experience in synaptic plasticity.
  • Experience in glial biology.
  • Experience in neurodevelopment.


  • Ability to effectively handle multiple, complex issues effectively and in a timely manner.
  • Excellent interpersonal, written, and verbal skills.
  • Demonstrated experience analyzing complex issues, conducting thorough and appropriate fact finding, reasoning logically, and articulating sound solutions.
  • Demonstrated collaborative work style.
  • Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with peers, co-workers, students, supervisors, and department heads.
  • Demonstrated ability to perform the essential functions of the job, with or without accommodation.
  • Demonstrated proficiency in the use of computers and software and statistics applications.
  • Commitment to Diversity – an understanding and appreciation of the benefits of a diverse workplace and the knowledge of how to shape processes and procedures that reflect and enhance the diversity of the WSU communities.


Mental Requirements:

  • Ability to reason logically and make sound decisions, to effectively communicate both orally and in writing, to remain poised under all circumstances, and to interact effectively with people in a positive manner that engenders confidence and trust.
  • Ability to work effectively and efficiently in high stress and conflict situations.
  • Ability to deal simultaneously with multiple complex problems.

Physical Requirements:

  • Work is performed primarily in a lab/office/vivarium setting; however, some travel off-site may be required.
  • Speech, visual, and hearing abilities that are sufficient to read and view written materials and effectively communicate and interact with WSU staff—both in person, via email, and over the telephone.
  • Ability to bend, twist, stoop, carry and lift work materials weighing up to 20 pounds.

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