Uncovering the hidden wealth of physiological information in field potentials.”

Wednesday, May 27, from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. — The seminar will take place at this zoom link.

Bradley Voytek is an Associate Professor in the Department of Cognitive Science, the Halıcıoğlu Data Science Institute, and the Neurosciences Graduate Program at UC San Diego.

Abstract

Perception, action, and cognition depend upon coordinated neural activity. This coordination operates within noisy, distributed neural networks, which themselves change with development, learning, and disease. Extensive field potential and EEG research shows that neural oscillations interact with neuronal spiking. This interaction has been proposed to be a mechanism for implementing dynamic coordination between brain regions, placing oscillations at the fore of neuroscience research. Our work challenges our definitions neural oscillations and noise. Beginning from basic theory and modeling, we show that traditional analyses conflate aperiodic non-oscillatory activity with periodic oscillations. I then present a breadth of empirical data, spanning human iPSC-derived cortical organoids, animal electrophysiology, invasive human EEG, and large-scale data mining. I show that, while not all things that appear oscillatory are so, the physiological information we can extract from the local field potential and EEG may nevertheless be far richer than previously thought, including nonsinusoidality of oscillation waveform shape and the aperiodic signal.

Bio

Bradley Voytek is an Associate Professor in the Department of Cognitive Science, the Halıcıoğlu Data Science Institute, and the Neurosciences Graduate Program at UC San Diego. He is both an Alfred P. Sloan Neuroscience Research Fellow and National Academies Kavli Fellow, as well as a founding faculty member of the UC San Diego Data Science program and Halıcıoğlu Data Science Institute. He received his PhD in neuroscience from UC Berkeley, after which he worked as the first Data Scientist at Uber before leaving to work as a post-doctoral fellow at UCSF. His research program combines large-scale data mining and machine learning techniques with hypothesis-driven experimental research to study the physiological origins of periodic and aperiodic neural activity, and how they relate to cognition and disease. He is also known for his zombie brain “research” and book, with friend and fellow neuroscientist Tim Verstynen, Do Zombies Dream of Undead Sheep?, by Princeton University Press.

This event is open to the public.