Dr. Shyam Diwakar, Director, Computational Neuroscience and Neurophysiology and Associate Professor, Amrita School of Biotechnology, Amritapuri, was an invited speaker for the third time at an event organised by the International School of Brain Cells & Circuits. The event, held from November 29 - December 3, 2017, was dedicated to the Italian Nobel laureate Camillo Golgi and focused on the topics, "From Cell Physiology to Integrated Signals and Emerging Brain Functions". It was supported by the Human Brain Project and European Union and assembled experts from around the world.
On December 1, 2017, Dr. Shyam Diwakar's talk addressed the topic "Realistic Modeling of Neurovascular Coupling" and connected the bottom-up approach of modeling in computational neuroscience relating neural activity to behavior, as seen in top-down modeling done with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) signals by physicians and surgeons in hospitals and clinics. The talk addressed how one may relate conditions such as multiple sclerosis or disorders like ataxia or autism to brain function and activity for pharmacological and physiological explorations.
Other speakers at the winter school included Amrita collaborators such as Prof. Egidio D'Angelo of Italy's Brain Connectivity Center and of University of Pavia, and Prof. Michael Hines of Yale School of Medicine, with whom the Computational Neuroscience laboratory have had joint papers. The school was organized by professors, Egidio D'Angelo of University of Pavia, Claudia Gandini Wheeler-Kingshott of UCL (UK) and Nikos Logosthetis of Max Planck Institute (Tubingen, Germany).
The Ettore Majorana Foundation and Centre for Scientific Culture hosted the school at the historically monastic town of Erice, Italy. The Centre has hosted 140 Nobel laureates in various sciences since 1963 and invites authors of new discoveries and inventions for visits during its various summer and winter courses. Dr. Diwakar was the only Indian speaker at the event, attended by 40 participants, including PhD students, Postdoctoral fellows and researchers in the fields of neuroscience, connectomics, imaging, physiology and robotics.
Amrita School of Biotechnology's Computational Neuroscience and Neurophysiology Lab develops and uses detailed models to analyse and understand brain function in addition to studies on bio-inspired robotics and low-cost neuroprosthesis, EEG-based imaging of brain function and assessing effects of yoga and meditation.