Mark Baxter and I wrote a commentary on this great paper by Rudebeck et al. They showed that the orbitofrontal cortex, a brain region thought to be involved in behavioural flexibility and emotion processing, may actually have a more restricted role than previously thought. Damage to the orbitofrontal cortex in monkeys and in humans can also lead to damage to the white matter tracts passing through it, and if those tracts are spared then the effect of the damage to orbitofrontal cortex is limited. It shows that we should be cautious when interpreting the effects of lesion studies. The orbitofrontal cortex is more likely to have a specific role in goal-directed behaviour and outcome expectation.
On July 1, 2013 I became Assistant Professor in the Departments of Neuroscience and Psychiatry at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. I’m in the process of setting up my own lab studying the role of the prefrontal and temporal cortex in memory using neurochemical depletions, lesions and MRI.
I am this week’s Story Collider podcast, telling my story: as I began to study memory, I also learned a new way of thinking about my grandmother’s failing memory.
NeuWrite is recruiting new members. We are a collaborative working group for scientists, writers, and those in between: graduate, postdoctoral and faculty researchers, fiction and nonfiction writers, filmmakers, radio producers, artists, doctors, and journalists. Our mission is to develop novel approaches for communicating science to the public in compelling and scientifically accurate ways. The group serves as a both a creative and a scientific resource for members pursuing their own projects, and as a forum for collaborative work.
We meet approximately bi-weekly during the Spring and Fall, and we workshop one to two projects per session. Members are expected to attend regularly, to read and comment on the pieces under discussion, and to contribute work of their own.
NeuWrite is committed to assembling a talented group of people from diverse backgrounds. Who should apply: professionals (or at least graduate-level students) in one or more academic, artistic, or journalistic field, who reside in the NYC area. Writers/artists are not required to have a scientific background and scientists are not required to have a writing background.
Application link: http://www.formstack.com/forms/NeuWrite-Application.
Application Deadline: January 15, 2013
Neuwrite’s webpage is now updated! You can find me in Neuwrite 2. I’m currently working on my first piece of writing for non-scientists (apart from my blog) so watch this space.