The emergence of GABAergic microcircuits in the cortex
Prof Juan Burrone
King's College London
The brain is made up of millions of neurons that form trillions of connections with each other, allowing information to be passed across them. A fundamental question in neuroscience is how these connections are formed as neurons wire up during development. Neurons in the brain can be broadly divided into excitatory and inhibitory, depending on whether they stimulate or dampen brain activity. It is thought that a tight balance exists between the two, so that the brain can process information in a stable manner. Disruption of this balance has been implicated in many neurodevelopmental disorders, such as autism, schizophrenia and epilepsy.
We will explore the principles behind the wiring of inhibitory neurons in the brain so we can discover how circuits of connected neurons emerge during development and uncover the mechanisms by which they remain stable over time.