Who we work with#
It’s good to know who we know. These are the lab’s collaborators across the world. Some of these labs are where the data comes from. Some of them we share code with. Some of them we work with informally, exchanging ideas. Some we’ve been working with a long time; some we’ve only just started down the road with.
Collaborations are a great example of the concept of “X-teams”: a team created to solve a problem or do a task by bringing together experts from across different, permanent teams. With no line management or hierarchy, such X-teams can be challenging to manage, but are great for solving problems we can’t tackle alone.
Tobias Bast (Psychology)
Tobias’ lab works on the role of prefrontal cortex in learning and decision-making. They train rodents on tasks, and do pharmacological manipulations of prefrontal cortex; they also do ex vivo electrophysiology of PfC slices. Paula Moran is also onboard some of these projects. We work with Tobias on analysing the rats’ behaviour.
Nottingham computational neuroscience community
Our immediate colleagues include Mark van Rossum (Psychology and Maths); Matias Ison (Psychology); Chris Madan (Psychology); Steve Coombes (Maths); and Ruediger Thul (Maths).
Nottingam’s Precision Imaging Beacon
Nottingham has a venerable tradition in human imaging: it is both the birthplace of MRI, and currently home to the first wearable MEG system. The Beacon is the visible entity for co-ordinating that work, and we are a member. The Beacon has its own dedicated computing cluster (to which we have access), and considerable funding (for fellowships and pilot projects).
Machine Medicine Technologies Ltd
London-based healthcare-tech company, who we work with on an Innovate UK grant to develop an application for predicting the suitability of Parkinson’s disease patients for Deep Brain Stimulation, alongside the clinical team from St George’s Hospital (London). CEO: Jonathan O’Keefe.
Matt Apps (Birmingham)
Matt’s lab studies human decision-making, with a particular interest in decisions that require effort. We work together on foraging, the problem of deciding whether to stay or leave. Mark co-supervisors a PhD student with Matt, and we are joint PIs on a BBSRC grant starting in 2023.
Matt Jones (Bristol)
Matt’s lab studies prefrontal-hippocampal circuits, particularly at the intersection of learning and sleep (e.g. consolidation and replay). He is Director of Neuroscience at Bristol. Mark is a named collaborator on Matt’s Wellcome Trust Senior Fellowship. We work with a substantial data-set from Matt’s lab on rats learning rules in a double-ended T-maze (or H-maze). Other datasets are available to the lab.
Nathan Lepora (Bristol)
Nathan’s lab works on bio-inspired robotics, particularly the use of whisker-like sensors and neuro-inspired decision algorithms. Nathan’s lab is part of the BBSRC grant with Matt Apps.
Rasmus Petersen (Manchester)
Rasmus’ lab studies the brain’s sensory processing using the rodent whisker system as a model. Rasmus and Mark held three joint grants during their time together in Manchester; two with Rasmus as PI, one with Mark as PI. We work with Rasmus on the analysis of large-scale imaging data from mouse barrel cortex [Data are from Karel Svoboda’s lab at Janelia Farm; Rasmus is our main contact with Janelia].
Tom Gilbertson (University Hospital, Dundee)
Tom is a clinical neurologist, specialising in dystonia. We collaborate with Tom in analysing and modelling behavioural data from his patient cohort.
NeuraxiS (Nottingham and Sheffield)
COVID-19 put this initiative on hiatus. A joint initiative between the computational neuroscience communities at Nottingham and Sheffield Universities. Its role is to help co-ordinate the work in both universities. Its outputs included a 2018 joint meeting of the parties, the joint bid to the Wellcome Trust DTP programme in 2019, and the 2019 UK Neural Computation conference. Mark founded the initiative, and steers it alongside Hannes Saal, Robert Schmidt and Stuart Wilson (all Sheffield). See https://sites.google.com/view/neuraxisuk for more.
Bill Frost (Chicago Medical School, RFUM)
Bill’s lab studies the motor systems of molluscs, particularly sea-slugs, with high-resolution voltage-sensitive dye imaging. We work together on understanding how the dynamics of neural populations controls movement.
Matt Perich (University of Montreal)
We collaborate with Matt on his primate motor cortex datasets, collected in the lab of Lee Miller (Chicago).
Adrien Peyrache (Monteral Neurological Institute)
Adrien’s lab works on the prefrontal-hippocampal system, currently with a particular focus on the head-direction system. We work together on Adrien’s data on population activity in the prefrontal cortex of rats learning rules in a Y-maze.
Jakob Dreyer (Lundbeck A/S, Copenhagen)
Jakob is perhaps the world’s leading modeller of dopamine release, diffusion and re-uptake. We informally work with Jakob on ideas about how the release of dopamine is related to its role in reward processing, and its effects on the basal ganglia
Jose Obeso (HM-CINAC, Madrid)
Jose is a world-leading movement disorder neurologist, who heads a joint clinic and experimental lab at HM-CINAC hospital. Jose is sympathetic to the insights available from computational models. We work informally with Jose on his ideas for why dopamine neurons are lost in Parkinson’s, and consult with him on the clinical relevance of computational work.