Montana State University

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Kopriva Science Seminar Series, Nicholas Dotson

Nicholas Dotson, a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience and the recipient of a Kopriva Graduate Student Fellowship, will present "Patterns of the Brain."

Cognitive processes, such as working memory, require the cooperation of a vast network of neurons spanning multiple cortical and sub-cortical brain areas. However, the mechanisms used to coordinate these widely distributed networks remain largely unknown, eluding neuroscientists for decades. Synchronization of oscillatory neuronal activity within and between these widely distributed areas is a candidate mechanism. In this talk, Dotson will discuss the spatiotemporal properties of several patterns of synchronous activity observed during visual working memory in non-human primates. The significance of this work is far reaching, as individuals suffering from traumatic brain injuries, psychiatric disorders and other neurological disorders often exhibit working memory deficits, and measurable deficits in certain patterns of synchronous activity.

Nicholas Dotson studies how different areas of the brain interact during working memory. The results of his research, which shows that that the patterns of synchronization between the prefrontal and posterior parietal cortex retain information in working memory, were recently reported in the journal Science.