William T. Newsome

Stanford University

Election Year: 2000
Primary Section: 28, Systems Neuroscience
Membership Type: Member

Research Interests

I study the neuronal processes that mediate visual perception and visually guided behavior. My laboratory conducts parallel behavioral and physiological experiments in monkeys that are trained to perform selected perceptual or eye movement tasks. By recording the activity of cortical neurons during performance of such tasks, the laboratory gains initial insights into the relationship of neuronal activity to the animal's behavioral capacities. Hypotheses concerning this relationship are then tested by modifying neural activity within local cortical circuits to determine whether behavior is affected in a predictable manner. Computer modeling techniques can be used to develop more refined hypotheses concerning the relationship of brain to behavior that are both rigorous and testable. This combination of behavioral, electrophysiological, and computational techniques provides a realistic basis for neurophysiological investigation of such cognitive functions as perception, memory, and motor planning.

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