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This SPP is divided into three research themes, aiming to study the role of cortico-subcortical loops in adaptive sensing from three key perspectives: A) Context-dependency, B) Prediction and Attention, and C) Learning and Plasticity.
Milestones (first funding period):

  • Identify feature-selectivity of cortico-subcortical projections to sensory inputs, their modulation by context and behavior, and their influence on subcortical representations

  • Elucidate mechanisms and rules of short-term and long-term plasticity of cortico-subcortical circuits

  • Define bidirectional anatomical and functional interactions between cortical and subcortical areas at the level of single neurons and populations

  • Guided by new theoretical models of cortico-subcortical interactions, derive common principles and specializations of these circuits across sensory modalities

  • Improve/distribute tools (optogenetics, imaging, electrophysiology, behavior, analysis) for resolving cortico-subcortical loops at the circuit level within and beyond the SPP.

We encourage projects to focus on one or more of three interrelated themes as described: (A) Context-dependent sensory processing, (B) Prediction and Attention, and (C) Learning. Within these, relevant research topics include, but are not limited to, the following areas:


The role of corticofugal feedback in context-dependent sensory processing

Prediction and Attention

The role of corticofugal feedback during prediction and attention

All three themes are united by a common set of underlying, general questions: Which information is carried by corticofugal connections? Which cell types are targeted with which synaptic strength? How spatially distributed are the relative projection fields of feedforward and feedback circuits? How do excitatory and (disynaptic) inhibitory corticofugal projections interact and how are they balanced? Are the corticofugal projections organized in functional streams mimicking the feedforward organization? To which degree does corticofugal feedback influence synchronization and oscillatory activity in cortico-subcortical loops? Are corticofugal loops organized into closed loops, which connect a specific population of cortical cells via subcortical structures back to themselves?

Learning and Plasticity

The role of corticofugal feedback during learning

Research themes

Research Themes: Programar
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