Sensory processing and internal states
A 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
One 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
Affecting 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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