Research scientist in RIKEN Brain Science Institute

Lab. for Developmental Gene Regulation, Dr. Hitoshi Okamoto (W490) Contact RIKEN BSI for Careers

November 18, 2016


Research Field

Our brain not only rationally thinks or memorizes events and facts but also produces and percepts “emotions” such as joy, grief, angry or fear.
Emotions have a strong influence on our behaviors. Experiences accompanied with some emotional situations are often memorized in our brain as a long-lasting striking memory.

For example, young children cannot understand the meaning of “red” or “blue” traffic signals. However, they memorize the meaning of “red” or “blue” signals by their own experience of being almost run over by a car or being scold by their parents, and finally they can take a correct behavior by stopping or crossing at the signals. Thus, in our daily life, we are continuously selecting an optimal behavior in the situation at which we are facing depending on information of our experiences in the past

We are interested in revealing the basic role of emotions in such selection of behaviors in animals including humans. Our research is focused on three themes:

  1. Investigating the role of the evolutionary conserved limbic circuit within vertebrates.
  2. Exploring the role of habenula in emotional behaviors.
  3. Studying the mechanism of the sensory neuron development and adult neurogenesis.

For details please see the faculty detail page.

Job title and Job description

Research Scientist (Postdoctoral Researcher): 1


We are seeking strongly-motivated persons who want to join us either as postdoctoral researchers to study the following subjects using multiple technologies such as genetic manipulation, two-photon fluorescent microscopy, electrophysiology and behavioral analysis by using zebrafish and mouse.
1) Study of neural circuits regulating emotional behaviors  2) Neural differentiation in the brain.

Work location

Laboratory for Developmental Gene Regulation is located in following address.
RIKEN Brain Science Institute 2-1 Hirosawa, Wako-shi, Saitama 351-0198, Japan

Salary and benefits

A one-year fixed-term employment contract, renewable based on evaluation, to a maximum of the end of the fiscal year (March 31) in which the employee completes 7 years of employment.
RIKEN may adjust the above maximum period of renewability based on a) the employee's abilities, work load at the time of contract completion, performance and work attitude and b) the continuation of the employee's center, laboratory or project and RIKEN's management situation and budget at the time.
The employee's period of fixed-term employment cannot exceed 10 years from the initial date of hire (or 10 years from April 1, 2013 for fixed-term employees already at RIKEN prior to this date).
Annual salary system, negotiable upon ability and experience. Commuting and housing allowances will be provided. Social insurance will be applied. Mandatory membership in the RIKEN Mutual Benefit Society (RIKEN Kyosaikai). Days off includes public holidays, New Year's holidays (Dec. 29 - Jan 3), and RIKEN Foundation Day. These and other provisions are in accordance with RIKEN regulations.
Also, eligible for an exemption from repayment for category 1 scholarship loans provided by the Japan Student Services Organization before fiscal year 2003, and eligible applying for the MEXT Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research (Kakenhi).

Application and required documents

  1. Complete CV with photo
  2. List of research achievement and publications
  3. Description of your reason for application
  4. Description of skills, experience, and interests
  5. 2 letters of recommendation (including one from the current supervisor, If available)

Application will be closed when the position is filled

[Handling Personal Data]
All private data sent to RIKEN in application for employment is handled in strict confidentiality, and such data is not utilized for any other purpose or disclosed to any third party. Application documents will not be returned.

Selection process

Selection will be made based on application screening and interviews.

Start of Employment


Send Application to

Send your application to the following address (only overseas candidates may forward applications by email).
Atsuko Shimada
Lab. for Developmental Gene Regulation
RIKEN Brain Science Institute
2-1 Hirosawa, Wako-shi, Saitama 351-0198 Japan

Contact Information

Hitoshi Okamoto, M.D., Ph.D
Hitoshi Okamoto Lab. for Developmental Gene Regulation
RIKEN Brain Science Institute
2-1 Hirosawa, Wako, Saitama 351-0198, Japan