October 15


SfN 2015: NeuWriters’ Picks!

This weekend, over 30 thousand scientists from all over the world will gather at the annual Society for Neuroscience (SfN) meeting in Chicago. Going to this conference can be quite overwhelming, so some of our NeuWriters would like to highlight the presentations (including their own) that they look forward to seeing among the sea of over 15 thousand posters and symposium talks.

Saturday, October 17

Hear more about our purpose as an organization, our increasing audience, and our outreach activities!  There will also be free NeuWrite swag (possibly including temporary tattoos) so you should really stop by. 🙂

Come talk about how low frequency oscillations are involved in visual information processing.

Sunday, October 18

According to the authors, what lives in a juvenile mouse’s gut contributes to how sociably the adult mouse acts, due to changes in amygdala neurons’ transcriptomes (i.e. magic). In crude summary, it is possible that the more lively your gut was when you were young, the more social you are. How good the supporting evidence is, of course, remains to be seen.

  • 1 – 3 pm “Social Issues Roundtable: The Income Achievement Gap: Insights from Cognitive Neuroscience.” at N229. Speakers: J. D. E. Gabrieli, S. J. Lipina, H.J. Neville, K. G. Noble, and S. D. Pollack.

Ever wonder if neuroscience can explain all the troubles of our world? Well we can sure try. These speakers will show neural correlates of the income achievement gap and tell us why having a terrible childhood can affect the brain as well as future income.

  • 1:30 – 4 pm “New Frontiers in Understanding Glia” at S105. Symposium moderated by Ben Barres. Speakers: B. A. Barres, M. R. Freeman, A. C. Lloyd, and D. Schafer.

Neurons are not the only kinds of cells in the brain. Go to this symposium to find out about the often ignored glia and why researchers should take a closer look at neurons’ neural neighbors.

Monday, October 19

Find out about the differences between rats that become addicted to meth and rats that just hang out in the operant chamber and press the lever occasionally for small amounts of meth.

A lecture on butterflies at a Neuroscience conference?  Yes, indeed.  I am excited to learn about the tools the monarch butterfly has developed to navigate long distances!  It will be worth the 8:30am start-time, I’m sure… Who’s with me?! – Kerin H.

  • 9 – 11 am “Exploring New Communications Channels: Science Blogging” PDW.18, S101.  Speakers: A. K. Churchland, D. Fields, B. R. Brookshire, and B. Voytek

This session will provide members with guidance on blogging about science, including how to launch a blog, write effective blog posts, and expand audience reach via social media and other online channels. Guests will include science bloggers who share their personal experiences about what works and does not work in engaging online audiences.

Tuesday, October 20

  • 12 – 2 pm “Animal in Research Panel: Proactive Strategies to Increase the Positive Public Perception of Animals in Research.” at N427 Panelists: Jason Goldman, PhD; Michael Mustari, PhD; Dario Padovan, PhD; Rolf Zeller, PhD

I love animals, and I love science, and I love talking about both–oftentimes in the same breath.  I have found, however, that many non-scientists believe that my passions conflict.  I am interested in hearing how other scientists and science communicators are working to make animal research more widely understood and accepted by the public. -Kerin H.

In this web-based dynamic poster (depicted below), users can explore brain asymmetries over development using interactive brains, manhattan plots, scatter plots, and similarity matrices. Our dynamic visualizations made some (unexpected!) results obvious; I’ll be there to add information and guide you through some of the less obvious results.

Cipollini poster screen shot

Wednesday, October 21

  • 8:15 – 8:30 pm “Structural topology lends stability to a dynamic functional landscape” Room N228, presented by Kelly Shen

This lab has shown a strong relationship between structural and “functional” connectivity. They look at the dynamics of brain networks and note cases of great stability over time. This talk extends their work about how the brain’s networks evolve over time to solve tasks.

Come find out about my efforts to train mice to pay attention to one visual stimulus and ignore another. Preview: one of those things is harder than the other. You’ll have to come to my poster to learn which is which.

It’s no Inside Out (Orbs? What Orbs?), but it does have something to say about how childhood memories might come to be.

How does a child’s brain change when part or all of one side of the brain is removed?