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Research Projects

Sensory processing and internal states

Sensory processing and internal statesA central principle of neuroscience is that sensory stimuli are represented as patterns of neuronal activity that ultimately giving rise to behaviors. Interestingly, even when a stimulus is fixed, such as the odor from a food source, behavioral responses can be diverse almost necessarily influenced by an assortment of factors ranging from the animal’s internal state to memory.

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Computational principles of neural circuits

Computational principles of neural circuitsOne of the challenges for understanding the neural code is the issue of dimensionality. If we image each neuron is like a logic gate that can either be on or off, then the number of possible patterns of activity a group of neurons can generate scales ~2Neurons.  means For even a population of a few hundred neurons (~150-300, which we regularly record from in the lab), the possible patterns is ~1090, log orders more than the number of atoms estimated in the observable universe.

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Induced-Pluripotent Stem Cell approaches to model disease

Induced-Pluripotent Stem Cell approaches to model diseaseAffecting over 1% of the world’s population, including 3 million Americans, schizophrenia is a debilitating psychiatric disorder characterized by an array of symptoms including hallucinations, delusions, difficulty expressing emotions, and deficits in attention and memory.  Despite the currently available antipsychotics, patients suffering schizophrenia have a life expectancy 10 years lower than that of the general population, are prone to substance abuse, homelessness, and are at risk of suicide.

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