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Briggman Group

To acquire the data needed to build biologically plausible models, we develop and utilize a multidisciplinary range of experimental techniques. We record cellular resolution images of neuronal populations from behaving animals. In addition, we use fluorescence microscopy to identify the expression patterns of specific proteins. Finally, we reconstruct synaptic connectivity using 3D electron microscopy.

By combining these methods within individual brains, we aim to discover the relationships between the structure and function of neuronal networks driving behavior. Firstly, we want to understand how sensory stimuli are transformed in the brain to ultimately generate motor decisions. Building on this understanding, we aim to identify the sources of variability during goal-directed behaviors. To address these questions, we compare and analyze neural circuits across mammals, fish and amphibians to determine which aspects of a computation are species-specific and which generalize across species.

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Methods

  • 3D electron microscopy for neural circuit reconstruction
  • whole-brain functional imaging of neuronal activity

5 selected publications

  1. Fulton, KA, and Briggman, KL (2021) Permeabilization-free en bloc immunohistochemistry for correlative microscopy. Elife 10, e63392.
  2. Ding H, Smith RG, Poleg-Polsky A, Diamond JS, Briggman KL (2016) Species-specific wiring for direction selectivity in the mammalian retina. Nature 535: 105-110.
  3. Helmstaedter M, Briggman KL, Turaga SC, Jain V, Seung HS, Denk W. (2013) Connectomicreconstruction of the inner plexiform later in the mouse retina. Nature 500(7461):168-74.
  4. Briggman KL, Helmstaedter M, Denk W. (2011) Wiring specificity in the direction-selectivity circuit of the retina. Nature 471(7337):183-8.
  5. Briggman KL, Abarbanel HDI, Kristan WB Jr. (2005) Optical imaging of neuronal populationsduring decision-making. Science. 307(5711):896-901