The study of synapses and neuronal circuits has entered a major new era of discovery. Genetic and biochemical studies have revealed the “parts list” of proteins that mediate synapse formation, plasticity, stability, and function. New optical approaches such as optogenetics and fluorescent protein-based activity probes are allowing the unprecedented ability to measure and manipulate cellular activities, even at the synapse level, to link to the behavior-related neuronal responses and to quantitatively assess specific roles of those proteins, affecting synapse and circuit function. Technologies arising from genome-era analysis have sped the discovery of genes associated with neurodevelopmental, psychiatric, and neurodegenerative diseases. With these new powerful tools in hand, many unsolved fundamental questions in neuroscience become suddenly accessible to the entire community of neuroscientists. Neuroscientists are beginning to elucidate the molecular and cellular mechanisms that govern the development, function, and plasticity of neuronal circuits and uncover how disruption of these mechanisms contributes to circuit dysfunction in complex human brain disorders. Our symposium will explore these topics, with talks by international leaders in the field.
The language of the event will be English.
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