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Neural Circuits of the Insect Ventral Nerve Cord

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Neural Circuits of the Insect Ventral Nerve Cord

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April 22 - 25, 2018
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There exists a rich, foundational, history of investigating neural mechanisms of sensorimotor transformation in the insect ventral nerve cord (VNC). Recently, new methods for genetic manipulation, optical imaging, and large-scale anatomical reconstruction of neural circuits have been applied to study insect nervous systems. 

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The goal of this meeting is to synthesize the fundamental insights gleaned from classic studies of the VNC, and to identify outstanding questions that can be answered as these new tools begin to be applied to VNC circuits. The major themes will be: 1) motor control of walking and flight, 2) mechanosensory processing of touch and proprioception, and 3) descending and ascending communication with the central brain. Presentations and discussions will cover current approaches for studying the VNC using electrophysiology, functional imaging, behavior, and anatomy. We will also include a handful of special talks from investigators working on vertebrate spinal cord circuits to provide a big picture view and facilitate discussions about common anatomical and functional principles. We especially encourage applications from female scientists and those who identify with groups traditionally underrepresented in science.

Application deadline: November 28, 2017 (11:59 p.m. ET)


Gwyneth CardJanelia Research Campus/HHMI
Wyatt KorffJanelia Research Campus/HHMI
John Tuthill, University of Washington

Invited Participants

Silvia Arber, University of Basel & Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research
Malcolm Burrows, University of Cambridge
Ansgar Büschges, University of Cologne
Eugenia Chiappe, Champalimaud Foundation
Itai Cohen, Cornell University
Einat Couzin-Fuchs, University of Konstanz
Michael Dickinson, California Institute of Technology
Barry DicksonJanelia Research Campus/HHMI
Abdel El Manira, Karolinska Institutet
Jessica Fox, Case Western Reserve University
Sten Grillner, Karolinska Institutet
Harald HessJanelia Research Campus/HHMI
Richard Mann, Columbia University
Tom Matheson, University of Leicester
Shigehiro NamikiJanelia Research Campus/HHMI
Pavan Ramdya, École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne
Nino Ramirez, Seattle Children’s Research Institute
Roy Ritzmann, Case Western Reserve University
Sarah Ross, University of Pittsburgh
Sanjay Sane, National Centre for Biological Sciences
David Shepherd, University of Southampton
Julie Simpson, University of California, Santa Barbara
David Stern, Janelia Research Campus/HHMI
James Truman, University of Washington
John Tuthil, University of Washington
Anne Von Philipsborn, Aarhus University
Rachel Wilson, HHMI/Harvard Medical School
Sasha Zill, Marshall University
Marta ZlaticJanelia Research Campus/HHMI