Closing the loop on neuronal oscillations: motor networks take centre stage
Dr Colin McNamara
University of Oxford
I want to understand how information spanning vast cortical networks is combined to inform decisions and actions. One theory is that synchronisation in rhythmic activity across brain areas creates temporary connections that drive complex and simple actions.
I will create a digital circuit to monitor and interact with rhythmic/oscillatory activity in a closed loop in mice. Higher order thalamic areas project throughout the cortex and are ideally placed to facilitate this synchronisation. I will measure the activity of hundreds of neurons across motor and premotor cortices while activating this projection based on cortical activity.
My results will increase understanding of motor systems and address mechanisms of general brain function that are relevant to processes such as attention and working memory.