Postdoctoral fellow, Harvard University, 2016
Ph.D. Neuroscience, University of California, Davis, 2010
B.S. Molecular Biosciences/Biotechnology, Arizona State University, 2004
What are the molecular and activity-dependent mechanisms instructing neural circuit development?
What is the logic of synaptic connectivity within neural circuits and how does brain structure establish brain function?
How do sensory systems capture and transform information about the world into perception and behavior?
These are a few of the big, overarching questions motivating our research on the development and plasticity of neural circuits for sensory perception. Using the mammalian visual system as a model, we explore changes in synaptic connectivity and function in parallel neural pathways from the eyes to central targets in the brain. We use transgenic and molecular tools to label and manipulate specific neuronal subsets in the visual system, electrophysiological and optical recording techniques to assay circuit function and connectivity, and high-resolution imaging techniques, including three-dimensional super-resolution fluorescence microscopy, to explore the molecular and structural refinement of developing circuits. By applying high-performance computing approaches to automate and refine our image analysis, we are working to extract new biological findings from big data.