Exploring neuronal networks and functions in zebrafish

Project opportunity

This Earmarked Scholarship project is aligned with a recently awarded Category 1 research grant. It offers you the opportunity to work with leading researchers and contribute to large projects of national significance.

DECRA fellow Itia Favre-Bulle is interested in brain function at the level of neurons and the circuits that they form. Using the zebrafish model system, we employ optogenetics to observe tens of thousands of neurons simultaneously in the brains of live behaving animals. We use light to target specific population of neurons and apply this to understanding the fundamentals of sensory processing. Our work produces large datasets, so we have a great need for students with interests in the broad areas of optics, image analysis, and computational biology. We build our own microscopes and use them to sculpt light into holograms for optogenetics and optical trapping, so we need students with a background in optics and interest in biology. However, all of these techniques are ultimately focused on questions related to the brain’s function and behaviour, so we have projects available for classically trained neuroscientists. Prospective students with interests in these areas are encouraged to apply.

Scholarship value

As a scholarship recipient, you'll receive: 

  • living stipend of $32,192 per annum tax free (2023 rate), indexed annually
  • tuition fees covered
  • single Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC)


Dr Itia Favre-Bulle

Queensland Brain Institute

Email: i.favrebulle@uq.edu.au

Preferred educational background

Your application will be assessed on a competitive basis.

We take into account your

  • previous academic record
  • publication record
  • honours and awards
  • employment history.

A working knowledge of optics would be of benefit to someone working on this project.

A background or knowledge of computational analysis is highly desirable.

Latest commencement date

If you are the successful candidate, you must commence by Research Quarter 1, 2024. You should apply at least 3 months prior to the research quarter commencement date.

If you are an international applicant, you may need to apply much earlier for visa requirements.

How to apply

You apply for this project as part of your PhD program application.

View application process