Biography

I am interested in memory, neural plasticity, how neurons synchronize, and how signals are transformed within and between brain regions. I want to use what we have learned about normal hippocampal-cortical coupling to develop novel therapeutics to treat epilepsy. I completed my bachelor’s in neuroscience at McGill working with Véronique Bohbot, my PhD at Boston University with Howard Eichenbaum, and my postdoc with György Buzsáki at NYULMC. As of August, 2020 I am an assistant professor in the Neurosciences Institute at the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque.

Areas of Specialty

Memory
Synaptic plasticity
Neural oscillation
Epilepsy

Education

PhD, Neuroscience, (2014):
Boston University - Purdue University
Boston, MA

Achievements & Awards

  • NIMH R00MH118423

Key Publications

https://scholar.google.com/citations?user=70S95lYAAAAJ&hl=en&oi=ao

Gender

He, Him

Languages

English

Research

I study how memory spaces form. Somehow the brain compresses irrelevant details while parsing features that lead to divergent futures. Part of the challenge of building such a memory space lies in the allocation of similar neural activity to situations that require common responses. This allocation must be done right if action is to appropriately generalize in novel circumstances. Since every moment is unique, we must somehow extract and generalize commonalities to understand the causal structure of our world.

How do we do that? How does the brain pull up the right pattern of neural activity at the right moment? What does it mean for these patterns to be similar enough to one another to drive appropriate actions? What is the right neural code to consider to begin this line of inquiry?

One important feature is the pattern of neural co-activity. My work focuses on what makes certain neurons fire together at the expense of others. I study how those neural patterns propagate, and how neural representations change with learning.

The rules of neural synchronization can go awry during epilepsy. In addition to my basic science research, my lab is working towards developing seizure forecasting algorithms and closed-loop stimulation protocols to control the spread of seizures. A major consequence of epilepsy is memory deficits. My lab will seek an understanding of why that is so, and what can be done to help.