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Dimensionality and synaptic plasticity in an insect learning and memory center

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Thursday, October 17, 2019
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12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
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Ashok Litwin-Kumar; hosted by Alessandro Sanzeni
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Computational and Theoretical Neuroscience Meeting

Ashok Litwin-Kumar is an assistant professor in the Department of Neuroscience at Columbia University. He received a B.S. in physics from Caltech in 2008 and a Ph.D. in computational neuroscience from Carnegie Mellon University in 2013, advised by Brent Doiron. He then completed his postdoctoral training at the Center for Theoretical Neuroscience at Columbia University, where he worked with Larry Abbott and Richard Axel. He has been a faculty member of the Center since 2018. His research focus is theoretical neuroscience, specifically models of learning and behavior. Topics include how populations of neurons represent the sensory environment and how these representations change during learning, the constraints that anatomy and physiology place on the learning algorithms implemented in the brain, and how these algorithms compare to those commonly studied in machine learning and artificial intelligence. Models are constrained by data from experimental collaborators and are used to suggest new experiments to test their predictions.