Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions

MSCA-PF: Joint application at the University of Granada. Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology II

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    01/09/2021 19:00 - Europe/Brussels
    HE / MSCA
    Spain, Granada
    International Research Projects Office
    Promotion and Advisory Unit

Professor Margarita Rivera Sánchez from the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology II at the University of Granada, welcomes postdoctoral candidates interested in applying for a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Postdoctoral Fellowships (MSCA-PF) in 2021 at this University. Please note that applicants must comply with the MobilityJulio SantiagoJulio SantiagoRule (more information about the 2020 call: http://sl.ugr.es/0aNV, the 2021 call is not yet open).

Brief description of the institution:

The University of Granada (UGR), founded in 1531, is one of the largest and most important universities in Spain. With over 60.000 undergraduate and postgraduate students and 6.000 staff. UGR offers a total of 89 degrees, 110 master’s degrees and 28 doctoral programmes through its 123 departments and 27 centers. Consequently, the UGR offers one of the most extensive and diverse ranges of higher education programmes in Spain.

The UGR has awarded with the "Human Resources Excellence in Research (HRS4R)", which reflects the UGR’s commitment to continuously improve its human resource policies in line with the European Charter for Researchers and the Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers. UGR is also a leading institution in research, located in the top of Spanish universities by a variety of ranking criteria, such as national R&D projects, fellowships awarded, publications, or international funding. UGR is one of the few Spanish Universities listed in the Shanghai Top 500 ranking - Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) (http://sl.ugr.es/0bsW). The UGR is amongst the 201-300 first universities of the world, between 2nd-5th position of Spanish universities and number 1 in the Andalusian Region in the Shanghai Top 500 ranking. Specialties at UGR that stand out are Library & Information Science (position 32) and Food Science & Technology (position 36). Moreover, the UGR is also situated amongst the first 100 universities in Mining & Mineral Engineering between (76th-100th position), in Mathematics (between 76th-100th position) and in Hospitality & Tourism Management (between 76th-100th position). The edition of the ARWU places the UGR in 201-300th position in the world and as the 4th highest ranked University in Spain, reaffirming its position as an institution at the forefront of national and international research.

Additionally, the UGR has 8 researchers at the top of the Highly Cited Researchers (HCR) list in Computer Sciences & Engineering (position 101-150). It is also well recognized for its web presence (http://sl.ugr.es/0a6i), being positioned at 43th place in the top 200 Universities in Europe.

Internationally, we bet decidedly by our participation in the calls of the Framework Programme of the European Union. For the duration of the last two Framework Programmes, the UGR has obtained a total of 67 projects, with total funding of 18.029 million euros, and for H2020, 118 projects with total funding around 29.115 million euros.

Brief description of the Centre/Research Group:

Dr. Rivera is a Ramon y Cajal researcher of the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology II at the University of Granada (UGR), and she is also Honorary Lecturer at King´s College London. Her team is based at the Biomedical Research Centre (CIBM) and is a recently assembled group within a bigger group whose main aim is the study of the genetics, psychological, social and environmental factors that play a role in the aetiology of the main psychiatric disorders (depression, anxiety, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder) and its relationship with comorbid physical conditions (obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases...). The team actively and closely collaborate with two other groups, leaded by Prof. Jorge Cervilla Ballesteros and Prof. Blanca Gutiérrez Martínez, with a very competitive trajectory in Biological and Environmental Psychiatry. The team also collaborates with international groups from King´s College London, the University of Lausanne, the VU University Medical Center/GGZ inGeest in Ámsterdam and the MaxPlanck Institute in Munich. Moreover, Dr. Rivera is a member of well-known International Groups and Consortia, such as the Psychiatric Genomics Consortium (PGC), the BRIDGES Bipolar Sequencing Group, the Major Depressive Disorder Group, The Bipolar Disorder Group and The Schizophrenia Group included in the PGC, and the MARISTÁN co-operation network. The PGC is a confederation of most investigators in the field and represents the largest consortium and the largest biological experiment in the history of psychiatry (http://www.med.unc.edu/pgc).

Project description:

The MSCA-PF candidate would join a research group that combines genomics and epidemiology to dissect the biological and environmental factors associated to mental disorders (depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder) and its comorbid physical conditions (obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases...). Specifically, the candidate project would focus on the study of the relationship between depression, obesity and physical activity. Depression and obesity are highly prevalent diseases, and its comorbidity has been well stablished by epidemiological observational studies that showed an increased prevalence of obesity in patients with depression and vice versa. Despite several mechanisms that have been proposed for this association, the nature of it remains largely unknown. Among the factors that influence this relationship are psychological, socioeconomic, cultural, behavioral patterns, lifestyles and nutritional factors, as well as antidepressant treatment. In addition, there are biological mechanisms shared between depression and obesity as the metabolic inflammation, immuno-inflammatory, and hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA)-axis dysregulations. On the other hand, recent studies have reported a significant protective effect of physical activity in the development of depression, suggesting the existence of shared etiological mechanisms. Genetic correlation among physical activity and psychiatric and obesity-related traits has also been reported. The candidate for the project will search for further insights into the etiology of this relationship through genome-wide association studies, Mendelian randomization studies, and integrating epidemiological, genomic and transcriptomic data.

Research Area:

  • Life Sciences (LIFE)

For a correct evaluation of your candidature, please send the documents below to Professor Margarita Rivera Sánchez (mrivera@ugr.es):

  • CV
  • Letter of recommendation (optional)


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