Skip to Content

Cellular Aging and Tissue Homeostasis

Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, Bethesda, MD and surrounding area

Position Description:

We are seeking a highly motivated postdoctoral fellow for a position in the Division of Molecular and Cellular Biology. Tissue homeostasis requires a precise balance between the production of new cells and the elimination of old or damaged cells. The midgut of the fly Drosophila melanogaster is an important and well-studied model system for understanding tissue homeostasis during aging, and it shows many similarities to the human intestine. Within the fly midgut, controlled intestinal stem cell (ISC) proliferation produces committed non-dividing enteroblasts (EBs), that ultimately mature into adult enterocytes (ECs). We have analyzed the gene expression program during midgut aging in flies and observed that it becomes disrupted through a block of the EB-EC transition, causing the epithelium to become populated by undifferentiated EBs and old, unreplenished ECs. These changes in turn produce a morphology of intestinal dysplasia and progressive loss of apico-basal epithelium organization with age. The candidate will extend these studies through genetic and histological analysis of mutants in which the transcriptional program of the aging midgut is genetically disrupted. The goal of these studies is to understand the transcriptional program of cellular aging in flies, allowing application of this knowledge toward analysis of mammalian intestinal tissue homeostasis and its disruption during disease.

The Division of Molecular and Cellular Biology provides an excellent training environment, with a vibrant, multi-disciplinary community of biologists studying many aspects of molecular, cellular and developmental biology. We are part of the NICHD Intramural Program, which offers a wide variety of training opportunities, excellent core support and access to a diverse array of biomedical studies within the NIH Bethesda campus.

Arnaoutov et al. (2020). IRBIT Directs Differentiation of Intestinal Stem Cell Progeny to Maintain Tissue Homeostasis. iScience 23:100954.

Arnaoutov and Dasso (2014). IRBIT is a novel regulator of Ribonucleotide reductase in higher eukaryotes. Science 345: 1512-5.


Candidates should hold a doctoral degree in genetics, cell biology or a related field, with demonstrated productivity and less than five years of postdoctoral experience. Candidates with experience using Drosophila as a model system will be highly preferred. Recent graduates are encouraged to apply.

To Apply:

For more information, please contact Alexei Arnaoutov, Ph.D. ( or Mary Dasso ( To apply, please email CV, summary of research interests and three letters of reference to the same address.

Application Deadline: This post will be available until October 1, 2020 or until filled.

NIH is an Equal Opportunity Employer. The NIH is dedicated to building a diverse community in its training and employment programs.