Submitted by Fermilab Arts & Lecture Series

Fermilab Arts & Lecture Series continues "A Summer of Lectures" with "Connectomics: Mapping The Brain" with Dr. Jeff Lichtman of Harvard University at 8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 9, in Ramsey Auditorium at Fermilab, off Pine Street in Batavia. Tickets to the lecture are $7.

Connectional maps of the brain may have value in developing models of both how the brain normally works and how it fails when subsets of neurons or synapses are missing or misconnected. Such maps might also provide information about how brain circuits develop and age. Lichtman works with the Center for Brain Science at Harvard, where his research centers on the question of how mammalian brain circuits are physically altered by experiences, especially in early life.

He has focused on the dramatic rewiring of neural connections through the development of techniques such as a "Brainbow" which allows select imaging of particular classes of central neurons. Recently, his efforts have focused on developing new electron microscopy methods to map the entire wiring diagram of the developing and adult brain. This "connectomics" approach is in part aimed at uncovering the ways information is stored in neural networks.

Lichtman is Jeremy R. Knowles Professor of Molecular and Cellular Biology and Santiago Ramon y Cajal Professor of Arts and Sciences at Harvard University. For 30 years, he worked at Washington University before moving to Cambridge in 2004. He is a member of the newly established Center for Brain Science.

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