Category Archives: Uncategorized

Phoenix rising

2 years ago we shut down the lab at UMD for COVID. Over the next year we packed up the lab and moved it to our new home at JHU. A lot of trips carrying stuff in our own cars, during COVID restrictions. Then came rebuilding of old setups and building of new setups with all the supply chain issues. This month marks the moment when the first papers and posters entirely generated in our new lab are being submitted. A momentous occasion that would have been impossible without the teamwork of the fantastic group of people that form the lab and that I have the privilege working with. Congratulations and thanks to: Binghan, Chih-Ting, Didhiti, Georgia, Ji, Jonah, Kate, Kelson, Lillian, Minzi, Travis.

New paper out showing sequential transmission of task-relevant information in A1

How is information about sound and behavioral choice integrated and processed in auditory cortex to lead to a behavior? Fantastic close collaboration with Babadi and Panzeri lab by Nik, Shoutik, and Loren shows that there are neurons encoding both sound and task information and that there is a sequential transmission of task-televant Information in A1. Read it here in Cell Reports.

New paper out! Impaired Hearing and Altered Subplate Circuits¬†in Otoferlin deficient mice.

Otoferlin deficiency leads to impaired cochlear synaptic transmission and is associated with progressive hearing loss in adults. Didhiti and Ying wondered if loss of Otoferlin also had effects on cortical development. They found that spontaneous and sound-driven cortical activity in the first two postnatal weeks was impaired in Otoferlin knockout mice. Moreover, they found that in these mice subplate neurons received exuberant connections from within the cortex. Thus, otoferlin deficiency has a powerful influence on cortical connections and spontaneous activity in early development even before complete deafness. Therefore, peripheral activity has the potential to sculpt cortical structures from the earliest ages, even before hearing impairment is diagnosed. Read the full paper here in Cerebral Cortex.

Early sound experience matters! It can alter subplate circuits in auditory cortex.

We knew that subplate neurons are the first cortical neurons to respond to sound. Ying and Didhiti now show in mice that altering peripheral activity can change subplate circuits in auditory cortex even before the ear canals open and before thalamus activates layer 4. Thus sensory experience can shape subplate circuits before the “traditional/classic” critical period. Read it here in Science Advances.