Circuit And Systems Neuroscience



Thanks to the advent of modern molecular, viral, optogenetic, and physiological approaches, neuroscience has discovered new and powerful principles by which ensembles of neurons effectively work together. Systems neuroscience aims to dissect the pathways of information flow within the central nervous system to establish causal relationships between the coordinated activity of diverse neural circuits and perception, emotion, memory, and cognition. Experimental tools used widely in the department include in vivo and ex vivo electrophysiology; calcium imaging; anatomical mapping; molecular targeting of synapses and circuits with viral and optogenetic strategies; and behavioral analysis to dissect the functional properties of identified circuits. One major area of interest is how behavioral states (e.g. awake/quiescent, exploring/attentive) influence sensory perception and understanding of two- and three-dimensional objects. Another focus is on neural processing of speech and other complex sounds in the CNS. Other laboratories study neural mechanisms of attention, memory formation, cognitive flexibility, reward, and motivation.

Faculty: Antic, Burghard, Castro-Alamancos, Grosmark, Spellman, Tuncdemir