Graduate Goals

As a Doctoral Candidate I am exploring the coordinated electrophysiological processes undergirding sensation, perception, cognition. The dysfunction of these circuits in brain-based disorders, their rescue (and even enhancement) of these mechanisms via nootropic pharmaceuticals highly interests me. I am eager to explore how the transient synchronization of neuronal discharges, the mechanism by which widely distributed sets of neurons are bound into functionally coherent ensembles, represent the neural correlates of specific cognitive behavior and motor programs. I am interested in neural synAschrony and asynchrony: temporal onset, roles in cognition (e.g. decision making, learning and memory, and creativity), and roles in various pathological conditions (e.g. schizophrenia, addiction and substance dependence,  PTSD, and Alzheimer’s Disease). In addition to the clinical relevance of this research, further insight into the underlying pathophysiological mechanisms are also likely to enhance our accepted understanding of normal brain functions. Specifically, I believe the work to be done will shed new light on the pathophysiological mechanisms and the role of neural synchrony in normal brain functions.

Following the completion of this doctoral program I plan to continue researching as a post-doc. Though I fully intend to spend a portion of my career as an academic, I also have in mind the blueprints for several brain-based biotechnology companies focused on the ideas of neurorepair, neuroenhancement, and engineering-based applications of neuroscientific ideas. I am convinced that the enabling maturation I will undergo through my doctoral research will equip me to bring about real change in the world.