The goal of this training program is to provide postdoctoral fellows with interdisciplinary training in visual neuroscience. The Salk Institute has for many years been home to a visual neuroscience community that has been highly productive and progressive in its approach, with an unusual degree of collaboration on topics of shared interest. This community now comprises the Center for the Neurobiology of Vision (CNV), which includes research programs that employ a variety of experimental approaches - molecular, genetic, cellular, systems, and computational - and address the neural structures and events that underlie visual sensation, perception, cognition, visually-guided behavior, visual plasticity, learning, memory and development. The twelve training faculty of the CNV collectively boast a lengthy, diverse and highly successful record of visual neuroscience training of both pre- and postdoctoral students. The proposed training program will place emphasis on research projects that are interdisciplinary, explore visual system organization and function across levels ranging from molecules to behavior, address multiple stages in the processing hierarchy and enable understanding of pathologies of visual function. The administrative structure of the proposed program comprises an Executive Committee with director T. Albright and committee members (E. Callaway, R. Krauzlis, D. O'Leary, and T. Sejnowski) representative of our research strengths: neural correlates of perception, neuronal circuits and mechanisms, development and plasticity, and disorders of visual function. Training will be provided in a range of modern techniques including electrophysiology, neuroanatomy, fMRI, psychophysics, molecular genetics, and theory/computational modeling. In view of the high quality of postdoctoral applicants to our program, the consistent successes of current and past trainees, and diminishing private funds for training in visual neuroscience, we are requesting support for four postdoctoral trainees, which will ensure the maintenance of this training and leverage the productivity of our fifteen NEI-supported research programs.
The Salk Institute is home to an extremely active community of scientists investigating the organization, function and development of the visual system. The proposed training of exceptionally qualified postdoctoral fellows in the concepts and techniques of modern visual neuroscience will ensure further advances in understanding of normal visual function and the development of effective treatments for pathologies of vision.
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