The University of Oslo is Norway’s oldest and highest rated institution of research and education with 28 000 students and 7000 employees. Its broad range of academic disciplines and internationally esteemed research communities make UiO an important contributor to society.

The Institute's overall objective is to promote basic medical knowledge in order to understand normal processes, provide insight into mechanisms that cause illness, and promote good health.

The Institute is responsible for teaching in basic medical sciences for the programmes of professional study in medicine and the Master's programme in clinical nutrition. The Institute has more than 300 employees and is located in Domus Medica.

Institute of Basic Medical Sciences (IMB)
PhD Candidate in neuroanatomy and neuroinformatics

One PhD position in Molecular Medicine is available is available for 3 years with a possibility for a fourth year with 25% compulsory teaching or consulting at the Institute of Basic Medical Sciences, Department of Molecular Medicine. More information about the institute can be found here: 

The position is funded by a grant from the Institute of Basal Medical Sciences.

The positions are associated with the research project “Quantitative atlas of the normal adult rodent brain: Region-wise anatomical characterization of cellular and subcellular properties across the whole brain”, which will be conducted in the Neural Systems Laboratory under supervision of Professor Trygve B. Leergaard. The PhD project will be in the fields neuroanatomy and neuroinformatics. The position is for three og 4 years, and the PhD student to be hired will participate in the PhD programme of the Medical Faculty at the University of Oslo, and complete the project during the employment period. The position should be filled as soon as possible. 

Job description

The project will focus on quantitative analyses of cellular parameters in main regions of the normal rodent brain, and facilitate utilization of results as benchmark for future studies in disease models and computational modelling efforts in rodent brains. The work to be conducted involves harvesting, integration, and analysis of large amounts of heterogeneous experimental morphological data describing salient aspects of mouse and rat brain systems subserving motor, somatosensory, and memory functions. Data will be collected from large public databases using infrastructure and digital brain atlasing tools developed by the host laboratory as part of the EC Future Emerging Technologies Flagship project The Human Brain Project (HBP). For general information about the HBP project and rodent brain atlasing, see Data analyses will result in descriptions of cell type positions and densities, neurotransmitter distributions, gene expression patterns, and axonal connections. A key goal will be to integrate and analyse the data in a common spatial brain atlas framework for the purpose of feeding computational brain models. 

The PhD position is a training position with the goal of obtaining a PhD. The PhD candidate shall work within the frame of a detailed project description and with necessary supervision be responsible for:

  • Harvesting experimental morphological (image) data from existing databases
  • Process and register images in an image management system developed by the host laboratory
  • Spatially register image data to 3D reference atlas of rodent brains
  • Extract quantitative morphological parameters using various analytic approaches, including computational image analysis, stereology, and 3-D reconstruction
  • Produce supplementary histological image material (by tissue processing, immunohistochemistry, image acquisition et cetera)
  • Produce written and graphical material for scientific and popular publications in high-ranking international scientific journals

The objective of a research fellowship is completion of research training to the level of a doctoral degree. Candidates must have completed higher education equivalent to a Norwegian master degree and be granted admission to the Faculty’s PhD program. The grade requirements is an average grade of no less than grade B on subjects at master’s level and on the master thesis. Subjects on bachelor’s level should be no less than grade C. The period devoted to research training may be reduced within the framework of pertaining regulations based on previously held research training positions. The research fellow is expected to complete the project within the set fellowship period. Please also refer to the regulations concerning terms and conditions of employment for the post as research fellow: link.

Qualifications and personal skills

We are looking for a highly motivated and competent researcher holding a Master degree (M.Sc) in a relevant field of science, who enjoys working in an international and interactive environment. The successful candidate should have a solid background in neuroscience (preferably from subfields neuroanatomy and neuroinformatics). Candidates with prior experience from anatomical research using advanced microscopy and 3-D imaging, and the personal prerequisites to carry out the project will be preferred. Experience with histological methods, computational 2-D / 3-D image registration methods, data management, and programming is an advantage. In assessing the applications, special emphasis will be placed on the relevance of the candidate’s background, with regards to research field and the research methods. The assumed academic and personal ability of the candidate to complete the project successfully will also be considered. Short-listed applicants may be invited for an interview at the University of Oslo or by teleconference. 


  • Ability to not only query data, but synthesize and interpret results and articulate a clear point of view on results
  • Ability to work effectively in a rapidly changing environment
  • Advanced skill in using computer software applications used for neuroscience analyses (e.g. Matlab, ImageJ, software for stereological analysis)
  • Ability to develop competence with new data analysis tools
  • Extensive communication and teamwork skills  


  • Applicants should have a five year Master degree from a Norwegian university or an approved equal degree.
  • The successful applicant must speak and write English fluently
  • Applicants must document good skills in rodent brain anatomy and previous experiences with 3-D digital rodent brain reference atlases
  • Applicants must have hands on experience with experimental neuroanatomical research in rodents involving microscopic techniques and image processing
  • Good technological skills and experience with advanced technical (imaging) equipment are required
  • The candidate must be capable of taking initiatives and work independently
  • Emphasis will be attributed to team-working, communication and individual suitability for the project

We offer:

  • An interesting and challenging assignment in a research group which runs a state-of-the-art infrastructure for high-throughput acquisition of 2-D and 3-D histological images and digital atlasing
  • A productive research environment.
  • Salary level NOK 432 700 – 489 300 (Ltr. 50-57) depending on qualifications.
  • Favourable pension arrangements Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund.
  • Attractive welfare arrangements benefits. 

The application must include:

The application with attachments is to be delivered in our electronic recruiting system EasyCruit. Foreign applicants are advised to attach an explanation of their University's grading system. Please remember that all documents should be in English or a Scandinavian language. 

In assessing applications, particular emphasis will be placed upon the academic and personal ability of the candidate to complete the project within the given timeframe.

Applicants may be called in for an interview.
In accordance with the University of Oslo´s equal opportunities policy, we invite applications from all interested individuals regardless of gender or ethnicity.

The University of Oslo has an agreement regarding acquisition of rights to work results for all employees, with the aim to secure rights to research results, etc.

According to the Norwegian Freedom of Information Act, information about the applicant may be included in the public applicant list, also in cases where the applicant has requested non-disclosure.

Important: Applicants must be delivered in EasyCruit. Applications sent only via email will not be accepted. 

  • Region:
  • Oslo
  • Job type:
  • Contract
  • Working hours:
  • Full-time
  • Working days:
  • Day
  • Application deadline:
  • April 2th 2017
  • Expected Start Date:
  • As soon as possible
  • Location:
  • Domus Medica, Sognsvannsveien. 9
  • Reference number:
  • 2017/3499