Our lab uses computer simulations of the brain to uncover the mechanisms responsible for normal brain function as well as neurological and psychiatric disease.
The details of neuroanatomy and neurophysiology are critical to understanding the brain: function follows forms through multiple scales from molecular up through local connections (microconnectomics), to large-scale brain connectomics. Properties emerge at each scale; pathologies can also emerge. Multiscale model simulations are used to detect and understand these emergences.
Most brain disease occurs not through single dysfunction at a gene but through multiple causes, each benign alone. Dysfunctions occur at the level of genes, proteins, cells, tissue and networks. Disorders at one location at one scale set up cycles of effects, some protective, some pathological, some transforming from protective to pathological.
These issues of scale must also be considered in assessing the physiological functioning of the brain in the processing of information. There is no one brain code, but rather several codes that are important at different scales, as well as multiple codes that operate at the cell-spiking scale: rate codes, wave-front codes, synchrony codes etc.
Research and curriculum development at the Neurosimulation Laboratory has been supported by National Institute of Neurological Disease and Stroke, National Institute of Mental Health, National Insitute of Aging, National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering, Defense Advanced Research Project Agency, Epilepsy Foundation of America, American Epilepsy Society, State University of New York, University of Wisconsin, Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation, and the Department of Veterans Affairs.