Welcome to the Center for Navigation and Communication Sciences
A fundamental feature of animal evolution is the advent and expansion of the nervous system. Among the most compelling outcomes are the neural and somatic mechanisms that support purposeful movement through the environment and effective communication between freely navigating individuals. These tasks entail coordination across multiple motor behaviors with the aid of several sensory modalities. Navigation and communication are fundamentally important to survival and are hallmarks of natural selection. These functions are also among the first to encounter trouble in the aged or diseased nervous system, and failures lead to errors that are potentially catastrophic (e.g. driving accidents, falls in the elderly).
We have established the Center for Navigation and Communication Sciences, supported by the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD), that is specifically dedicated to research on the sensory, motor, and integrative mechanisms underlying these essential functions. Key topics of research focus on two general areas: multi-sensory interactions and sensorimotor integration underlying communication and navigation, and plasticity, learning and recovery of function. These are not mutually exclusive, and are indeed synergistic. Our integrated approach recognizes that no sensory or motor modality evolved alone, but rather in tandem to support the complexities of daily activities.
Further, by understanding the principles underlying our ability to navigate through our environment and to communicate with others, and how these functions fail with aging and disease, the CNCS addresses important clinical and public health concerns. In so doing, the CNCS and it's research cores enhances our contributions to the health and well being of our community.
- Dissecting neural circuits for multisensory integration and crossmodal processing.Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci. 370. (2015 Sep 19).
- The relationship between contact and attitudes: Reducing prejudice toward individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities.Res Dev Disabil. 47, 14-26. (2015 Sep 02).
- Multisensory Convergence of Visual and Vestibular Heading Cues in the Pursuit Area of the Frontal Eye Field.Cereb Cortex. (2015 Aug 18).