Research Project Title:
Ultrafast Brain Imaging
abstract:Neural dynamics, specifically, the passage of action potentials through neurons and their effects on the neurons, are majorly what define and determine the functions of the brain. Capturing these dynamics in real-time will prove greatly beneficial for biological research concerning the brain. A major roadblock in this technique is the rate of which these signals work. The solution we propose here has two threads: 1) using an event camera and 2) inherent compressive sensing. The work will involve studying the statistics of neural spikes with their signature spatial footprints and temporal traces, and using this as a prior to encode and reconstruct the system of signal processing of neurons. If the project goes as planned, this can serve as a microscopy technique nobody has used before.
Participating in superUROP gives me the ability to have long term ownership on a project, something that I cannot have normally in class or via a UROP, something that I yearn to have and am fortunate to have in my undergrad. I have had numerous research experiences in computational and biological labs at MIT. I get excited by computational techniques applied to biology, and this project allows me to do that in a favorite direction, neuroscience.