Jason Ritt, Ph.D.
Ph.D., Neuroscience, Boston University
M.A., Mathematics, Boston University
B.S., Oberlin Conservatory
Phone: (617) 353-5903
Office: LSE 201; Office hours: By appointment
Neuroscience of sensorimotor behaviors; biological active sensing; functional role of embodiment in neural computation; brain machine interfaces; neural prosthetics.
Dr. Ritt’s research concentrates on how organisms gather and use information from their environment, through processes of active sensing and sensory decision making.
Current projects employ electrophysiological, behavioral, optogenetic and theoretical methods applied to the rodent whisker system, a highly refined tactile sensory system. Experiments combine multi-electrode recording of brain activity; high speed videography of behavior and development of automated image analysis algorithms; and optical stimulation of specific cell types (e.g., excitatory vs. inhibitory neurons) using genetically targeted expression of light sensitive ion channels. Parallel modeling uses tools from dynamical systems, control theory and decision theory. Augmenting experiments with model-driven, real-time feedback forms a basis for development of brain machine interfaces, with an emphasis on sensory neural prosthetics, in addition to providing state of the art tools to address basic questions of neural function.
Selected Recent Publications
J. T. Ritt, M. L. Andermann, C. I. Moore “Emdodied information processing: vibrissa mechanics and texture features shape micromotions in actively sensing rats” Neuron. 57: 599-613. (2008)
M. A. Saito, T. Goepfert, J. T. Ritt “Some thoughts on the concept of co-limitation: Three definitions and the importance of bioavailability” Limnology and Oceanography. 53 (1): 276-290. (2008)
M. L. Andermann, J. Ritt, M. A. Neimark, C. I. Moore “Neural correlates of vibrissa resonance: band-pass and somatotopic representation of high frequency stimuli” Neuron. 42 (3):451-63. (2004)
J. Ritt “Evaluation of entrainment of a nonlinear neural oscillator to white noise” Physical Reviews E. 68: 041915. (2003)