Monday, December 26, 2016
JOB - PhD student Sleep for traumatic memories
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a severely disabling mental disorder with traumatic memories at its core, resulting in nightmares and flashbacks. Sleep is crucial in the treatment of PTSD, since traumatic memories that get neutralized during treatment subsequently get integrated in long-term storage during memory consolidation while asleep. This stabilizes the updated memories and further reduces their affective charge. Recent advances in basic memory research show that memory consolidation can be enhanced by presenting reminder cues. This project aims to integrate these memory reactivation strategies during sleep for the first time in standard PTSD treatment to increase overall therapeutic effectiveness. By using functional MRI before and after and polysomnography during treatment, the project will at the same time elucidate the underlying neurobiological mechanism.
The candidate is responsible for conducting experimental research (including patient inclusion and fMRI/EEG measurements), data analysis and reporting findings in international journals. He/she is expected to submit a high quality dissertation for examination within four years of the appointment.