||NIH Neuroscience Series Seminar
Dr. Isa’s Lab aims at elucidating the neural circuit mechanisms for regulation of dexterous motor actions, learning, and the functional recovery after the brain and spinal cord injury. They are conducting the researches in various animal models for their goal, from mice, rats, marmosets, macaque monkeys, and humans, applying multidisciplinary methods, such as electrophysiology, psychophysics, neuroimaging, transgenic animals, viral vectors, and computational modeling.
Dynamic properties of the large-scaled neural networks in the brain, which span multiple brain areas experience context-dependent transition in relation to the vigilance, attention or learning stage etc. One of the most typical situations where such transition occurs is during the functional recovery from the brain and/or spinal cord injury. They have been studying the neuronal mechanism of the post-lesion functional recovery and how the recovery is regulated by cognitive functions such as motivation. They believe that with this knowledge, they can develop effective therapeutic strategies to cure the brain/spinal cord injury in the future.
A big progress in this field of research has recently been achieved by introduction of a new technique of pathway-selective and reversible manipulation technique using the combination of 2 viral vectors in monkeys, which was developed in Dr. Isa’s lab (Kinoshita et al. Nature 2012), by which they can pin-down the critical circuit(s) for recovery.
For more information go to https://neuroscience.nih.gov/ninds/Home.aspx