de la Rocha Lab
Neurons form networks that carry out computations. Sensory circuits in the cortex represent sensory information in a context dependent manner. Thus relevant stimuli for the task at hand, are presumably encoded more accurately than distractors. These cortical circuits are composed of thousands of neurons densely and strongly coupled following connectivity maps that remain mostly unknown. Neural activity in these circuits can exhibit a variety of dynamical spatio-temporal patterns (e.g. oscillations, sustained activity, etc.) which depend largely on the state of the animal (arousal, sleep, anesthesia).
We are interested in how sensory neurons are connected to form networks that carry out simple computations involving the representation of incoming sensory inputs. Particularly, we investigate the generation of ongoing activity, its dependence on brain state and its impact on sensory representation. Moreover, we study how top-down signals, such as attention and expectation, are integrated with sensory inputs to give rise to perception and guide decisions. To examine these questions, we use a combination of experimental (population cortical recordings in rats) and computational techniques (analysis of neural network models).
Carrer Rosselló, 149-153
Decision-making, Working memory, Network dynamics