Training Program in Neurobehavioral Genetics

Program Overview

The Training Program in Neurobehavioral Genetics is a predoctoral and postdoctoral training program jointly funded by NINDS and NIMHOriginally established in 2005 and 2006 as two complementary training programs by Drs. Nelson Freimer and Dan Geschwind, this program has since now merged into a single program co-directed by Drs. Roel Ophoff and Carrie Bearden.

This integrated program rests on two premises:

  1. Genetic and genomic approaches are indispensable tools in understanding the nervous system and its diseases, and tie together basic, translational, and clinical neuroscience;
  2. Phenotyping of the nervous system is a distinct scientific discipline that unifies the investigation of neural mechanisms with the study of behavior.
Based on these premises, we have pursued two complementary goals, which rest on strong quantitative and computational principles:
  1. To provide rigorous training in genetics and genomics to individuals with prior expertise in phenotyping of the nervous system (including neurologists, psychiatrists, and clinical psychologists);
  2. To provide exposure to advanced nervous system phenotyping approaches to individuals with prior expertise in genetics, genomics, or other basic science disciplines.
Program Requirements

Trainees appointed to the program are required to complete related coursework, present a talk at the annual retreat, submit an individual NRSA award or equivalent fellowship during their first year of training, and participate in all program activities for (2) years.

Program activities include (but are not limited to):

  • Research training with a Participating UCLA Faculty Mentor
  • Attendance at the Integrative Center for Neurogenetics (ICNG) seminar series
  • Participation in the Neurobehavioral Genetics (NBG) Journal Club
  • Training in Responsible Conduct of Research (per NOT-OD-10-019)
  • Training in quantitative and computational principles under statistician Dr. Noah Zaitlen

Required coursework include:

  • NS240: Phenotypic Measurement of Complex Traits (offered every other Fall Quarter)
  • NS215: Current Research Topics in Neurobehavioral Genetics (offered every Winter Quarter)
  • MIMG C234: Ethics and Accountability in Biomedical Research (offered every Spring Quarter)
Application Process

For information on how and when to apply, please visit the Predoc/Postdoc Opportunities page.