Friday, April 14, 2017
7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
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Zebrafish models for epilepsy research and drug discovery
Scott C. Baraban, PhD is Professor of Neurological Surgery and William K. Bowes Jr. Endowed Chair in Neuroscience Research at UCSF where he directs an epilepsy research laboratory in the Department of Neurological Surgery. His pioneering research focuses on translational questions and includes work on models of pediatric epilepsy in zebrafish and interneuron-based cell therapies for epilepsy. The first zebrafish models for epilepsy were developed in his laboratory over 10 years ago, and his group published the first high-throughput drug screens using a zebrafish model for Dravet syndrome. He has authored more than 100 publications, including papers in the Journal of Neuroscience, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, Neuron, Nature Communications, Science and Nature Neuroscience. He has received several research honors, including the Basil O’ Connor Scholar Research award, a Klingenstein Foundation Fellowship in Neuroscience and an NIH EUREKA award. He was recently awarded a Javits Neuroscience Investigator Award from the NIH and the Basic Science Research award from the American Epilepsy Society.
Dr. Baraban received his Bachelor’s degree from Johns Hopkins University and Ph.D. from the University of Virginia. He completed postdoctoral training at the University of Washington. He currently serves on the Scientific Advisory Board of the Dravet Syndrome Foundation and Gruppo Famiglie Dravet Associazione of Italy, and is a Regular Member on CNNT NIH study section.
Oligodendrocyte dynamics in the adult CNS
Dwight Bergles is a professor in the Solomon H. Snyder Department of Neuroscience at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, where he also holds a joint appointment in the Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery. He serves as Director for the Multiphoton Imaging Core facility at JHU, Co-Director of the Neuroscience Graduate Program and has been a faculty member in the Neurobiology Course at the Marine Biological Laboratory.
Dwight received his bachelor’s degree in Biology from Boston University and Ph.D. in Molecular and Cellular Physiology from Stanford University. He completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the Vollum Institute in Portland Oregon before joining the faculty at Hopkins in 2000 as assistant professor. He was promoted to professor in 2011. The goals of Dwight’s laboratory are to understand how interactions between neurons and glial cells contribute to CNS development, neuromodulation in the adult brain, and neurodegeneration is diseases such as ALS. His studies have included analysis of glutamate transport and Ca2+ signaling in astrocytes, the generation of spontaneous activity in the developing auditory system, and the development and dysfunction of oligodendroglia.
Yevgeny Berdichevsky received his B.S. degree in electrical engineering and computer science from University of California, Berkeley in 1999 and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in electrical and computer engineering from University of California, San Diego in 2002 and 2006, respectively. He was a postdoctoral fellow at the Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School in the Center for Engineering in Medicine until 2010, and then in the Department of Neurology until 2011. He is currently an Assistant Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Lehigh University. He is also a member of Lehigh’s Bioengineering Program. Dr. Berdichevsky teaches neural engineering, electromagnetism, and bioengineering ethics. He was the recipient of Taking Flight Award from Citizens United for Research in Epilepsy (CURE), Massachusetts Biomedical Research Corporation Tosteson Postdoctoral Fellowship, Shriners Hospitals for Children Research Fellowship, and Ruth L. Kirschtein National Research Service Award.
The Sources of Attentional Templates: Human ERP Measures
Nancy’s research addresses questions about the interplay of attention and memory systems in human adults. How are we able to direct our attention to information that matters out of the vast array of possible items that we could attend? What memory systems do we use to keep in mind which objects are important (and which ones are not)? She utilizes behavioral, eye tracking, and electrophysiological techniques to address theoretically motivated questions about these systems. Nancy’s research has been published in the Journal of Neuroscience, the Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, Cognitive, Affective, and Behavioral Neuroscience, and Psychophysiology. Nancy Carlisle received her Honors Psychology B.S. and Zoology B.S. from Michigan State University in 2005, and her PhD in Psychology from Vanderbilt University in 2011. She was a postdoctoral researcher at the Center for Mind and Brain at UC Davis before taking a faculty position at University of Leicester in the UK. Since 2016, she has been an assistant professor of psychology at Lehigh University.
Life in the fast brain: dendritic structure and function underlying auditory computations
Fast, time-varying features of sound are essential for humans and other mammals for localizing sound sources as well interpreting speech and communication calls. The broad goal of our research is both to understand how these features are processed in the brain, as well as to understand how neurons in auditory circuits acquire the appropriate biophysical properties during development to carry out these computations. For many years we have focused on the medial superior olive (MSO), the first and critical stage for processing interaural time differences (ITDs) from the two ears, cues that are used for localizing sounds along the horizontal plane. In the MSO, ITDs are computed and conveyed through the process of coincidence detection, by which excitatory inputs from the two ears are segregated onto different branches of a bipolar dendritic arbor and sum at the soma with submillisecond time resolution. To pursue these questions, we combine electrophysiological, imaging and optogenetic approaches in vivo and in brain slices. The results of our experiments help provide an understanding of how central neurons compute synaptic information, and shed light on cellular mechanisms underlying the development and function of sensory systems.
Electrical synapse plasticity: a theme and variations
Julie Haas is an assistant professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at Lehigh University. She earned her Ph.D. in biomedical engineering from Boston University, followed by postdoctoral work at U. C. San Diego and Harvard University. Dr. Haas has received awards as a young investigator from the Brain and Behavior Foundation and the Whitehall Foundation. Dr. Haas’s work seeks to understand the relationships between electrical synapse strength, activity and synchrony in neuronal circuits that include coupled neurons, and the more abstract process of attention that is controlled by electrically coupled neurons in the thalamus.
Neural dynamics of the primate attention network
Sabine Kastner is a Professor of Neuroscience and Psychology in the Princeton Neuroscience Institute and Department of Psychology. She also serves as the Scientific Director of Princeton’s neuroimaging facility. Dr. Kastner earned M.D. and PhD degrees and did postdoctoral training at NIMH. Dr. Kastner studies the neural basis of visual perception, attention, and awareness in the adult brain, in patients with brain lesions, and during neurodevelopment. She has published more than 100 articles in journals and books including the ‘Handbook of Attention’, a comprehensive state-of-the-art reference for the field (2014, Oxford University Press). Kastner serves on several editorial boards, is a Senior Editor for eLife, and a chief editor for the first open access online science journal for kids, Frontiers for Young Minds. Kastner enjoys a number of outreach activities such as fostering the career of young women in science, promoting neuroscience in schools and exploring intersections of vision science and art.
Promoting behavioral adaptation by lynx cholinergic modulation
Julie Miwa, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the biological sciences department at Lehigh University. She got her Ph.D. at the Rockefeller University in Neuroscience, and the B.A. at the University of California at Berkeley in Neurobiology. She trained at Yale in Psychiatry and worked at Caltech as research faculty before coming to Lehigh University. She studies the genetic regulation of learning and is interested in behavioral adaptation, optimization, and creativity.