The focus of this project is to investigate the causal relationships of the interactions between cortical oscillations within the different layers of individual cortical columns of the primary visual cortex. The cortical column is widely regarded as a standard computational unit which is used throughout the cortex, though its workings are far from understood. By analysing a pre-existing dataset of laminar recordings which has been made available to us by Nikos Logothetis’ lab, we hope to demonstrate that the interactions between oscillations of different frequencies within the cortical laminae are essential to the workings of the cortex, and to formulate models of these interactions.
During the course of the project, new analytical methods will be developed, extending on existing techniques, and these will be made available to the neuroscience community.
Analysis will also be performed on a dataset from an experiment in the perceptual learning of visual contrast. This is an extension to the student’s existing project in collaboration with Alex Thiele’s lab. Work so far has involved performing an information theoretic analysis of the data in an effort to establish the nature of changes in the information about the stimuli transmitted by neurons within visual cortical regions V1 and V4.