PhD offer: Characterisation of adult neurogenesis in the olfactory bulb and hippocampus of blind ZRDBA mice models. (CMO team, CRNL, Lyon, France AND University of Trois-Rivières, Québec, Canada)

Application deadline: 15/09/23

Starting date: January 2024


Worldwide, 2.2 billion people are visually impaired (OMS). The absence of vision induces a cerebral plasticity that allows the other senses to be potentiated. To date, the impact of blindness on olfactory and memory functions, and its neurobiological correlates, remain poorly studied. Neurogenesis still occurs in adulthood, in the dentate gyrus (DG) of the hippocampus and the olfactory bulb (OB). The aim of the project is to study the neuronal plasticity of the olfactory and hippocampal systems induced by the absence of visual input, and more specifically, the role of adult neurogenesis.

Job description

In a blind mouse model (ZRDBA) , we will examine

  1. Neuronal plasticity: proliferation, survival and functional integration of new neurons in the OB and DG. This will be performed by means of various techniques such as BrdU immunohistochemical labelling, combined with other neuronal, glial and early immediate gene
  2. Behavioural adaptation and the ability of new neurons to participate in memory and olfactory functions.

Working conditions

This offer is the result of a collaborative project between the CNRS of Lyon, France and the University of Trois-Rivières, Québec, Canada.

Lab work will therefore take place at the university of Trois-Rivières based in Québec (UQTR), under the supervision of Dr. Syrina Al Aïn and in Dr. Alexandra Veyrac’s lab which is located within the CMO team, at the Centre de Recherches en Neurosciences de Lyon, France.


Applicants should be holding a bachelor (or masters) degree in biology, neurosciences and or ethology.

Good writing and communication skills are expected. The candidates are also expected to be independent, to show scientific rigour and show interest for pluri-disciplinary research.

How to apply

Please send

  1. CV
  2. Motivation letter
  3. Academic transcripts and Master’s thesis
  4. The name of two references to the supervisors


    3351, boul. des Forges, C.P. 500
    Trois-Rivières (Québec) G9A 5H7 CANADA
    Téléphone 819 376-5011, poste 358 Télécopieur 819 376-5039

CRNS UMR-5292, INSERM U1028, Université Lyon 1
Centre Hospitalier Le Vinatier – Bâtiment 462 – Neurocampus
95 boulevard Pinel
69675 BRON Cedex, France Voice: 33-(0)4-81-10-65-58

Please note: Enrolment in the Biomedical Science program of Trois-Rivières University, Québec will be required.

Useful links

  1. Recent publications by A.Veyrac:

Veyrac A, Allerborn M, Gros A, Michon F, Raguet L, Kenney J, Godinot F, Thevenet M, Garcia S, Messaoudi B, Laroche S, Ravel N. Memory of occasional events in rats: individual episodic memory profiles, flexibility, and neural substrate. J Neuroscience (2015) 35(19):7575-7586.

2. Recent publications by S.Al Aïn :

  • Bouguiyoud, Nouhaila & Morales-Grahl, Elena & Bronchti, Gilles & Frasnelli, Johannes & Roullet, Florence & Al Aïn, Syrina. (2022). Effects of Congenital Blindness on Ultrasonic Vocalizations and Social Behaviors in the ZRDBA Mouse. Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience. 16. 884688. 10.3389/fnbeh.2022.884688.
  • Bouguiyoud, Nouhaila & Roullet, Florence & Bronchti, Gilles & Frasnelli, Johannes & Al Aïn, Syrina. (2022). Anxiety and Depression Assessments in a Mouse Model of Congenital Blindness. Frontiers in Neuroscience. 15. 10.3389/fnins.2021.807434.
  • Steffener, Jason & Al Aïn, Syrina & Frasnelli, Johannes. (2021). Quantifying neural efficiency and neural capacity across the brain during a working memory task using a quadratic model of neural‐cognitive relationships. European Journal of Neuroscience. 54. 10.1111/ejn.15473.

Master’s thesis studying the effect of blindness on the development and plasticity of the olfactory bulb prize won under the supervision of Dr. Syrina Al Aïn :