Specific spatiotemporal patterns of neuronal activity in the auditory cortex are believed to underlie the perception of sounds. However, it is unclear what specific components of sound-evoked patterns are actually mediating a percept. We will use optogenetic interference with sound-evoked patterns in mice engaged in an auditory cued go/no-go paradigm to map out regimes of destructive interference as observed by impairments on discrimination behaviour. Complementarily, we will investigate behavioural generalization in mice trained to sounds when optogenetic cues are presented in catch trials. The project involves a combination of methodological development, physiology and psychophysics enabling the delineation of the essential components of an activity pattern mediating a percept. It offers an ideal training opportunity for a person with a physics or engineering background wanting to move into the field of neuroscience.
Prof. Simon Rumpel