(Turn and face the strange*)
We seek to discover principles that explain the design and function of circuits in the brain. Our work is guided by curiosity and theory. Our experiments involve the rodent nervous system.
This program addresses the circuits for motor actions that underlie exploration and foraging with emphasis on orofacial sensorimotor systems. These circuits coordinate movement of sensory organs and sensors and then decode a stable world view in the presence of self-motion. Our current focus is three-fold: brainstem connections for the modulation of orofacial and head movement by the breathing oscillator; the decoding of thalamocortical to cortical transformaions to deduce vibrissa contact; and midbrain and forebrain feedback to refine the coordination of multiple orofacial motor actions. We use a full spectrum of approaches that include anatomy, behavior, computational analysis, and electro- and opto-physiology.
This program determines the vascular and lymphatic connectome for the brain and the nature of neuronal and vascular control of blood flow and interstitial fluid flow throughout the mouse brain. Our current focus is three-fold: relating changes in metabolic load and neurological state to vasomotion; addressing the dynamics of flow and substrate delivery; and maping the anatomy of subcortical cortical of vasodynamics. We use a full spectrum of approaches that include connectomics, computational analysis, electro- and opto-physiology, and structural and functional imaging.
(... we are not afraid to follow truth wherever it may lead, nor to tolerate any error so long as reason is left free to combat it.**)
We maintain an ongoing effort to develop tools that advance our scientific studies. Our current focus is three-fold: imaging of somas, axons, boutons, and spines deep within structurally complex tissue, like the brainstem, with adaptive-optics-based two-photon microscopy; the advancement of "all optical histology" to study inhomogeneous tissue, like the brain-skull interface; and tools to automate the analysis of light-level histological data.