Professor Simon Laughlin
Professor Simon Laughlin is pleased to consider applications from prospective PhD students.
Our group is interested in discovering design principles that govern the structure and function of neurons and neural circuits. We record from well-defined neurons, mainly in flies’ visual systems, to measure the molecular and cellular factors that determine relevant measures of performance, such as representational capacity, dynamic range and accuracy. We combine this empirical approach with modelling to see how the basic elements of neural systems (ion channels, second messengers systems, membranes, synapses, neurons, circuits and codes) combine to determine performance. We are investigating four general problems. How are circuits designed to integrate information efficiently? How do sensory adaptation and synaptic plasticity contribute to efficiency? How do the sizes of neurons and networks relate to energy consumption and representational capacity? To what extent have energy costs shaped neurons, sense organs and brain regions during evolution?
No direct clinical relevance
Electrophysiological recording techniques
High speed video
Natural scene statistics
Holger Krapp Web: http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/people/...
Graham Taylor Web: http://users.ox.ac.uk/~zool02...
Gordon Shepherd Web: http://info.med.yale.edu/neurobi...
Peter Sterling Web: http://retina.anatomy.upenn.edu/peter.html
Matti Weckström Web: http://cc.oulu.fi/~mtw/in...
Niven JE, Anderson JC, Laughlin SB (2007), “Fly photoreceptors demonstrate energy-information trade-offs in neural coding” PLoS Biology 5(4): e116doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.0050116 Details
Faisal AA, White JA, Laughlin SB (2005), “Ion-channel noise places limits on the miniaturization of the brain's wiring” Current Biology 15:1143-1149 Details
Attwell D, Laughlin SB (2001), “An energy budget for signalling in the grey matter of the brain” Journal of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism 21:1133-1145
Fain GL, Hardie R, Laughlin SB (2010), “Phototransduction and the evolution of photoreceptors.” Curr Biol 20(3):R114-24 Details
Niven JE, Buckingham CJ, Lumley S, Cuttle MF, Laughlin SB (2010), “Visual targeting of forelimbs in ladder-walking locusts.” Curr Biol 20(1):86-91 Details
Parsons MM, Krapp HG, Laughlin SB (2010), “Sensor fusion in identified visual interneurons.” Curr Biol 20(7):624-8 Details
Sengupta B, Laughlin SB, Niven JE (2010), “Comparison of Langevin and Markov channel noise models for neuronal signal generation.” Phys Rev E Stat Nonlin Soft Matter Phys 81(1 Pt 1):011918 Details
Sengupta B, Stemmler M, Laughlin SB, Niven JE (2010), “Action potential energy efficiency varies among neuron types in vertebrates and invertebrates.” PLoS Comput Biol 6:e1000840 Details
Niven JE, Laughlin SB (2008), “Energy limitation as a selective pressure on the evolution of sensory systems.” J Exp Biol 211(Pt 11):1792-804 Details
Okawa H, Sampath AP, Laughlin SB, Fain GL (2008), “ATP consumption by mammalian rod photoreceptors in darkness and in light.” Curr Biol 18(24):1917-21 Details
Faisal AA, Laughlin SB (2007), “Stochastic simulations on the reliability of action potential propagation in thin axons.” PLoS Comput Biol 3(5):e79 Details
Nawroth JC, Greer CA, Chen WR, Laughlin SB, Shepherd GM (2007), “An energy budget for the olfactory glomerulus.” J Neurosci 27(36):9790-800 Details
Parsons MM, Krapp HG, Laughlin SB (2006), “A motion-sensitive neurone responds to signals from the two visual systems of the blowfly, the compound eyes and ocelli.” J Exp Biol 209(Pt 22):4464-74 Details
Laughlin SB, Sejnowski TJ (2003), “Communication in neuronal networks.” Science 301(5641):1870-4 Details
Schreiber S, Machens CK, Herz AV, Laughlin SB (2002), “Energy-efficient coding with discrete stochastic events.” Neural Comput 14(6):1323-46 Details
Attwell D, Laughlin SB (2001), “An energy budget for signaling in the grey matter of the brain.” J Cereb Blood Flow Metab 21(10):1133-45 Details
Burton BG, Tatler BW, Laughlin SB (2001), “Variations in photoreceptor response dynamics across the fly retina.” J Neurophysiol 86(2):950-60 Details
Dror RO, O'Carroll DC, Laughlin SB (2001), “Accuracy of velocity estimation by Reichardt correlators.” J Opt Soc Am A Opt Image Sci Vis 18(2):241-52 Details
Laughlin SB (2001), “Energy as a constraint on the coding and processing of sensory information.” Curr Opin Neurobiol 11(4):475-80 Details
Vorobyev M, Brandt R, Peitsch D, Laughlin SB, Menzel R (2001), “Colour thresholds and receptor noise: behaviour and physiology compared.” Vision Res 41(5):639-53 Details
Harris RA, O'Carroll DC, Laughlin SB (2000), “Contrast gain reduction in fly motion adaptation.” Neuron 28(2):595-606 Details