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MSCA-PF: Joint application at the University of Granada. Sport and Health University Research Institute (iMUDS).

International Research Projects Office

Hosting Information

Offer Deadline
EU Research Framework Programme


Organisation / Company
International Research Projects Office
Promotion and Advisory Unit
Is the Hosting related to staff position within a Research Infrastructure?

Contact Information

Organisation / Company Type
Higher Education Institute
Postal Code
Gran Vía de Colón, 48, 2nd floor


Professor Irene Esteban Cornejo, from the Sport and Health University Research Institute (iMUDS) at the University of Granada, welcomes postdoctoral candidates interested in applying for a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Postdoctoral Fellowship (MSCA-PF) in 2022 at this University. Please note that applicants must comply with the Mobility Rule (for more information about the 2022 call, please consult:

Brief description of the institution:

The University of Granada (UGR) was founded in 1531 and is one of the largest and most important universities in Spain. With over 60,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students and 6,000 members of staff, the UGR offers over 70 undergraduate degrees, 100 master’s degrees (9 of which are international double degrees) and 28 doctoral programmes via its 127 departments and 22 centers. Accordingly, the UGR offers one of the most extensive and diverse ranges of higher education programmes in Spain.

The UGR has been awarded with the "Human Resources Excellence in Research (HRS4R)", which reflects the institution’s commitment to continuously improving its human resource policies in line with the European Charter for Researchers and the Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers. The UGR is also internationally renowned for its excellence in diverse research fields and ranked among the top Spanish universities in a variety of ranking criteria, such as national R&D projects, fellowships awarded, publications, and international funding.

The UGR is one of the few Spanish Universities listed in the Shanghai Top 500 ranking - Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU). The 2021 edition of the ARWU places the UGR in 201-300th position in the world and as the second highest ranked university in Spain (, reaffirming its position as an institution at the forefront of national and international research. The UGR stands out in the specialties of Library & Information Science (position 36); Food Science & Technology (39) and Hospitality & Tourism Management (51-75), according to the latest edition of this prestigious ranking by specialties ( A little lower in the ranking, the UGR also stands out in Mathematics (76-100) and Mining & Mineral Engineering (76-100).

Additionally, the UGR has 7 researchers who are at the top of the Highly Cited Researchers (HCR) list (, most of these related to the area of Computer Science. It is also well recognized for its web presence (, being positioned at 54th place in the top 200 Universities in Europe.

Internationally, the University of Granada is firmly committed to its 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, 119 projects with a total funding of around 29.233 million euros.

Brief description of the Centre/Research Group:

The PROFITH Research Group ( is a young, enthusiastic and highly competitive group. Our overall goal is to advance the current scientific knowledge in a way that contributes to create a healthier society by means of examining the beneficial effects of physical activity on individuals’ health with and without disease and of any age. To achieve this aim, the PROFITH Research Group has several consolidated research lines. Exercise neuroimaging is one the key research lines in our group, and is developed in several subareas:

- Exercise, fitness and brain health in youth: longitudinal and interventional studies.

- Exercise neuroscience and healthy aging: magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and positron emission tomography (PET) studies.

- Physical activity and brain-heart connections in patients with Coronary Heart Disease: implementing new brain sequences on exercise neuroscience.

The study of these two extremes of the lifecycle is important, since provides as a model to understand what occurs in a period when brain is developing (i.e. childhood) and when is shrinking and functionally declining (i.e. older adulthood). This could have an immediate impact on public policy and health care recommendations in addition to advancing the state-of-the-science in cognitive health and exercise neuroscience.

Project description:

The interdisciplinary research line focused on exercise neuroimaging across different ages and populations is based on several funded research projects:

  1. ActiveBrains is a two-group randomized controlled trial investigating the effects of a 20-week concurrent exercise program on cognition and brain structure and function in children with overweight obesity. Data collection of this project is completed.
  2. AGUEDA is a two-group randomized controlled trial on cognitively normal older adults aiming to examine the effects of a 24-week resistance-strength exercise program on brain structure and function, and brain amyloid beta. Data collection is planned to be completed by July 2022.
  3. HeartyBrain is a three-group randomized controlled trial on coronary heart disease patients, mostly older adults aiming to test the effects of different types of exercise on brain health outcomes, and unravel the physiological mechanisms behind the heart-brain connection. The project is currently recruiting participants and is planned to be completed in December 2023.

For these well-design randomized control trials, we have/will have brain MRI/PET data using different novel sequences (e.g., T1-weighted MPRAGE structural, resting state EPI, diffusion tensor imaging or arterial spin labeling) to develop and apply data quality processes, image processing pipelines and cutting-edge analytical approaches. Programming and statistical skills (e.g., R, bash scripting) and knowledge of Python, MATLAB and other specific neuroimaging tools (e.g., FSL, FreeSurfer, SPM, AFNI…) are essential to understand the neurobiology of exercise in humans.

Research Area:

  • Information Science and Engineering (ENG)
  • Life Sciences (LIFE)

For a correct evaluation of your candidature, please send the documents below to Professor Irene Esteban Cornejo (

  • CV
  • Letter of recommendation (optional)