Research Interests

My DPhil thesis was concerned with reconciling computational models of rate- and
temporally- coded synaptic plasticity. Subsequent post-doctoral work with Phil Husbands
and Andy Philippides in the Centre for Computational Neuroscience and Robotics at the
University of Sussex examined dual rate- and temporally- coded learning and recall in a
spiking recurrent neural network model of CA3, with particular reference to the neural
dynamics observed in hippocampal place cells during spatial learning and exploration.

During this time, I also gained some experience of empirical neuroscience working with
Kevin Staras on the fluorescent imaging of synaptic vesicle dynamics in hippocampal
cultures, and spent a short period working at the Collegium Budapest in collaboration
with Chrisantha Fernando and Eors Szathmary on temporally coded models of oscillatory cortico-hippocampal interactions and the supervised learning of temporally coded
responses in single neurons and small networks.

In May 2010 I moved to the laboratory of Mayank Mehta in the Physics Department at
UCLA, to further my experimental and computational investigations of the dynamics of
learning and memory in the cortico-hippocampal system. This involved the use of in vivo
electrophysiology and pharmacological techniques in awake behaving rats, as well as
subsequent data analysis and computational modelling. I assisted in behavioural
training, surgery and the development of a virtual reality system that allows whole cell
recordings to be performed in head restrained animals during spatial navigation in a
simulated environment.

In November 2010 I moved to the Department of Computing at the University of Surrey to work with Yaochu Jin on an examination of the genetic regulatory networks that underlie synaptic, intrinsic and homeostatic plasticity. This project focussed on the manner in which transient activity at the cell membrane is translated, by second messenger signalling networks, into enduring synapse specific and cell wide changes.

In November 2011 I took a post-doctoral position with Neil Burgess in the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience at UCL. My current research is concerned with the mechanisms and dynamics of spatial learning and memory in the hippocampal formation. Utilising human and rodent electrophysiology, functional imaging and computational modelling techniques, we aim to elucidate the cellular and network level mechanisms that generate the spatial tuning of principal cells in this region, and how these properties contribute to the various mnemonic functions ascribed to the hippocampus and surrounding medial temporal lobe.