Over the last several decades, the tractable response properties of parahippocampal neurons have provided a new access key to understanding the cognitive process of self-localization: the ability to know where you are currently located in space. Defined by functionally discrete response properties, neurons in the medial entorhinal cortex and hippocampus are proposed to provide the basis for an internal neural map of space, which enables animals to perform path-integration based spatial navigation and supports the formation of spatial memories. My lab focuses on understanding the mechanisms that generate this neural map of space and how this map is used to support behavior. In this talk, I’ll discuss how learning and experience shapes our internal neural maps of space to guide behavior.
Lisa Giocomo is an Associate Professor of Neurobiology at Stanford University. She received her PhD in Neuroscience at Boston University working with Michael Hasselmo and then worked as a postdoctoral fellow with Edvard and May-Britt Moser at the Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience before starting her lab at Stanford University in 2013. She works on the navigation system, revealing new ways in which membrane biophysics control spatial coding, providing causal evidence that the spatial codes in entorhinal cortex support memory, discovering how sensory inputs drive the formation of spatial codes and navigational accuracy and innovating new analytical approaches to identify cortical coding. Her lab operates at the intersection of multiple interdisciplinary techniques, combining in vivo electrophysiology, freely moving and head-fixed calcium imaging, in vitro physiology, behavior and computational approaches.
No need to book, just turn up!