Talk Abstract

‘Most of what we’ve learned about the organization and processing of information about visual stimuli in the mammalian central nervous system comes from the study of neural circuitry within and between three areas: the retina, the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN) of the thalamus, and primary visual cortex.  This focus is warranted in primate: 90% or more of primate retinal ganglion cells project to the dLGN. 

In most other mammalian species (including the mouse and rat), however, neurons in the superficial superior colliculus (sSC) likely play an equally if not more important role as neurons in the dLGN. In this talk I’ll highlight new insight into the specificity with which information about particular features of visual stimuli are represented by distinct cell types in the sSC, the degree to which information in those cell types is conveyed to distinct downstream targets, and the degree to which input from the sSC and primary visual cortex can be integrated by neurons in those downstream areas.’


Gabe Murphy joined the Allen Institute for Brain Science in the fall of 2015; he and his team examine characteristics of individual neurons as well as the synaptic connections through which neurons communicate with one another.  Gabe’s previous research experience includes stints as a group leader at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Janelia Research Campus, a postdoctoral fellow in Fred Rieke’s lab at the University of Washington, and a graduate student in Jeff Isaacson’s lab at the University of California, San Diego. He received his B.A. in neuroscience from Pomona College.