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PhD: Relating a behavioral model and fMRI responses in a mouse model of tinnitus

Your project is based on the hypothesis that tinnitus is causes by a maladaptive response of the brain to hearing loss. You will test this hypothesis by (1) …

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Hanzeplein, Groningen, Groningen
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht


Your project is based on the hypothesis that tinnitus is causes by a maladaptive response of the brain to hearing loss. You will test this hypothesis by (1) setting up experiments to measure auditory brain responses in mice, using a small-animal MRI scanner. (2) measure auditory fMRI responses in normal hearing and hearing impaired mice. (3) set up the behavioral measurement to assess tinnitus in mice. (4) correlate fMRI responses and behavioral indicators of tinnitus. The project will be supervised by Prof. dr. Pim van Dijk, Drs. Ing. Kees van de Kolk and Dr. Sonja Pyott.


Required qualifications:
- Master degree in physics, biomedical engineering, electrical engineering or a related field with a strong interest in medical imaging and MR physics. Also, a background in biology is recommended. In line with EU requirments, this qualifying degree must have been acquired within the 4 years preceeding the start of your appointment.
- Programming skills, especially with Matlab, or other related programming tools for image reconstruction.
- Inquisitive, critical, and independent research attitude
- Excellent communication skills and a team player mentality
- Interest in working in an international environment and in interacting with patients
- Preferred: Proficiency or willingness to learn Dutch
- Active participation in training and dissemination activities of the European Training Network TIN-ACT.
- In line with the requirements of EU ETN projects, applicants must not have resided or carried out their main activity in the Netherlands for more than 12 months in the 3 year period immediately prior to the start date. See tinact.eu for a full description of this mobility requirement.

The UMCG has a preventive Hepatitis B policy. The UMCG can provide you with the vaccination, should it be required for your position.


The duration of the contract is three years to be concluded with a PhD examination. It concerns a full time appointment (36 h/week). After one year, the performance of the candidate will be evaluated to decide whether there is sufficient progress to expect a successful completion of the PhD thesis. You will be registered with the Graduate School for Medical Sciences (GSMS) at the Univeristy of Groningen.

Your salary is € 2.279,- gross per month in the first year, and up to a maximum of € 2.786,- gross per month in the last (third) year (scale PhD). In addition, the UMCG will offer you 8% holiday pay, an 8.3% end-of-year bonus and a development budget. The conditions of employment comply with the Collective Labour Agreement of Medical Centers (CAO-UMC).

The UMCG is committed to offer equal opportunities. Applicants with disabilities will be preferentially considered in case of equal qualifications.

More information
For more information about this vacancy you may contact Prof. dr. P. van Dijk (p.van.dijk@umcg.nl), phone +31-50-3612550 or Drs. Ing. Kees van de Kolk (c.w.a.van.de.kolk@umcg.nl), phone +31-6-55256733. (please do not use e-mail adresses for applications)

The application package will have:
- A copy of your CV
- The names and contact information of two references (one of them preferably your advisor from Master’s or another research project)
- A short motivation letter
- An example of a previously written report or journal article

Additional information

UMCG corporate information

Department of Otorhinolaryngology

Marue Sklodowska-Curie Innovative Traning Network ‘TIN-ACT: Tinnitus Assessment,


Department of Otorhinolaryngology This is a PhD position at the Otorhinolaryngology Department and the Research & Support Facility of the University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG). The UMCG is one of the largest hospitals in the Netherlands. More than 12.500 employees provide patient care, are involved in medical education and perform cutting-edge scientific research focused around the theme of ‘Healthy and Active Ageing’. Research at the UMCG is characterized by close interactions between fundamental and patient oriented clinical research.

The Otorhinolaryngology Department and the research program 'Healthy Ageing and Communication' aim at a better understanding of hearing disorders with the goal to contribute to their relief. This research program combines fundamental research on hearing with cross-disciplinary approaches to explore interactions between hearing and other factors, such as cognitive processing, ageing, and signal processing in hearing aids and cochlear implants.

As a PhD student you will collaborate with group members from diverse backgrounds, such as engineering, medical sciences, audiology, biology and medical physics. You will work toward a dissertation, and present your research in at least three contributions to high-impact international journals. Your research will be embedded in the EU-funded Innovative Training Network ‘TIN-ACT: Tinnitus Assessment, Causes and Treatments'.