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News and Announcements


    The Kenneth O. Johnson & Steven S. Hsiao Memorial Lecture

  • MBI Researchers Awarded New Collaborative Grant     


    MBI Professors Ernst Niebur and Rudiger von der Heydt were awarded a new NIH research grant, in collaboration with Prof. Ralph Etienne-Cummings of the Department of Electrical and Chemical Engineering.  The grant, entitled “Neuronal mechanisms of perceptual organization in the primate visual system,” combines experimental and theoretical studies with neuromorphic engineering implementations to elucidate the interface between visual feature representations and attentive cognitive processes.

  • Nielsen Publishes in Neuron


    MBI Asst. Professor Kristina Nielsen published a research article in the journal Neuron.  In collaboration with researchers at the Salk Institute, Nielsen and her colleagues demonstrated a new organizing principle of how visual features are mapped efficiently in the primary visual cortex of macaque monkeys.


    Ian Nauhaus*, Kristina J. Nielsen*, and Edward M. Callaway. Efficient Receptive Field Tiling in Primate V1.  Neuron (* Co first-authors).


  • Niebur Lab Receives New Grant from ONR


    MBI Professor of Neuroscience Ernst Niebur has been awarded a new grant from the Office of Naval Research.  The title of the grant is “Bayesian approach for integrating spatial and temporal information during scene analysis.”

  • Connor Lab Publishes in Current Biology


    MBI Director and Professor Ed Connor’s lab recently published a research article in Current Biology.  The paper shows that a channel in the ventral visual pathway carries information about the orientation of floors, ceilings, and corners that could be used to understand the direction of gravity in scenes and predict how objects will behave under the influence of gravity.


    S. Vaziri and C. E. Connor. Representation of Gravity-Aligned Scene Structure in Ventral Pathway Visual Cortex, Current Biology (2016),

  • Kristina Nielsen Ph.D. Receives Whitehall Foundation Award


    MBI Assistant Professor Kristina Nielsen was awarded a prestigious, 3-year research grant from the Whitehall Foundation.  The title of the grant is “Which tuning dimensions define columns in the ventral pathway?”   Dr. Nielsen’s group will use two-photon microscopy to investigate the functional micro-organization of visual area V4.

  • Congratulations to Natalie Trzcinski, Ph.D.


    Natalie Trzcinski, a graduate student of Steve Hsiao and Ed Connor, successfully defended her Ph.D. dissertation and presented her research in a public seminar on November 13, 2015.  Her thesis seminar was titled "Mechanisms and Perceptual Consequences of Experience-Dependent Somatosensory Plasticity.”  Congratulations, Natalie!

  • Kirkwood Lab Publishes in Neuron


    MBI Professor Alfredo Kirkwood's lab published a recent paper in the journal Neuron.  Their work used physiological and computational approaches to investigate synaptic mechanisms of reward-based learning.


    Kaiwen He, Marco Huertas, Su Z. Hong, XiaoXiu Tie1 Johannes W. Hell, Harel Shouval, Alfredo Kirkwood (2015) Distinct Eligibility Traces for LTP and LTD in Cortical Synapses. Neuron (in press, available online).

    See media coverage at the following links;

  • MBI Researchers Awarded CRCNS Grant


    Professors Ernst Niebur and Veit Stuphorn were awarded a new 4-year grant from the NIH-NSF Collaborative Research in Computational Neuroscience program.  The project, funded by the National Institute of Drug Abuse, is entitled “Neural mechanisms of decision-making: From value-encoding to preference formation and reversals.”  The researchers aim to understand multivariate decision making in human and non-human primates.

  • MBI Scientists Publish in Neuron


    The Knierim laboratory published a new paper in Neuron that investigates neural mechanisms of memory encoding and retrieval in the hippocampus.  The authors show a topographical gradient of associative memory computation along the CA3 transverse axis of the hippocampus.


    Lee H, Wang C, Deshmukh SS, Knierim JJ. Neural Population Evidence of Functional Heterogeneity along the CA3 Transverse Axis: Pattern Completion versus Pattern Separation.  Neuron. 2015; 87:1093-105


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  • Stuphorn Lab Receives NIH Grant


    MBI Associate Professor Veit Stuphorn received a  new 4-year grant from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke titled “Neural Mechanisms of Behavioral Control.”  The project will investigate the prefrontal mechanisms of continuous self-control; that is, the ability to resist temptation, forgoing easy, immediate rewards that lead to suboptimal or negative long-term outcomes.

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