The Center for Systems Neuroscience benefits from grants from diverse funding sources.

Office of Naval Research Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative (ONR MURI) Grant

Neural circuits underlying symbolic processing in primate cortex and basal ganglia.

The ONR MURI combines a team of researchers from Boston University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Brown University. The MURI includes neurocomputational modeling and neurophysiological analysis of neural circuit mechanisms for symbolic processing in monkeys and humans in different tasks including: 1. Hierarchical rule learning involving location cues coding the application and reversal of rules based on associations between specific visual cues. 2. Hierarchical rule learning guided by cues regulating the focus on different dimensions of stimuli. 3. Tasks requiring responses based on temporal translation to make responses based on the time of individual stimuli. 4. Tasks involving application of rules in a variant of Raven’s progressive matrices. This research is performed under the direction of Principal Investigator Prof. Michael Hasselmo, who is overseeing development of computational models of neural circuits involved in symbolic processing. Development of different models of symbolic processing is also performed under Prof. Marc Howard at Boston University and by consultant Prof. Chris Eliasmith. Modeling predictions are tested in experiments using multiple single-neuron recording and field potential recording in monkeys in the lab of Prof. Earl Miller in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Systems at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In addition, predictions of these models are tested in neuroimaging experiments in the laboratories of Prof. David Badre in the Department of Psychology at Brown University and Prof. Chantal Stern in the Center for Systems Neuroscience at Boston University.

Office of Naval Research Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative: N00014-16-1-2832

Office of Naval Research Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative (ONR MURI) Grant

Neuro-Autonomy: Neuroscience-Inspired Perception, Navigation, and Spatial Awareness for Autonomous Robots

The ONR MURI provides funding to explore how humans and animals process sensory stimuli to engage in goal-directed navigation. These biological insights are being applied to algorithmic methods which permit autonomous navigation for robots. Implementation is agnostic to specific robot design, enabling validation studies with ground, aerial, and underwater autonomous robots using experimental testbeds at BU, MIT, and Australian institutions. Prof. Yannis Paschalidis (Systems Engineering, CSN) leads the interdisciplinary research team which includes Prof. John Baillieul (Systems Engineering, CSN), Prof. Margrit Betke (Computer Science, CSN), Prof. Michael Hasselmo (Psychological and Brain Sciences, CSN), Prof. John Leonard (Engineering, MIT), Prof. Nicholas Roy (Aeronautics, MIT), and Prof. Roberto Tron (Systems Engineering).

ONR MURI FOA N00014-18-S-F006

NSF Major Research Instrumentation Grant

Principal Investigator Chantal Stern

This grant provides funding for a Siemens 3T MAGNETOM Prisma MRI scanner for human structural and functional neuroimaging research in the Cognitive Neuroimaging Center (CNC) in the new Kilachand Center for Integrated Life Sciences and Engineering. Development of the research facilities within the Kilachand Center, and more specifically the CNC, has provided Boston University neuroscience researchers with state-of-the-art facilities as a shared, core facility for research, with the goal of developing an understanding of brain function that bridges across multiple scales – from the cellular level, to the systems level, to the level of human cognition and behavior. The new MRI scanner within the multidisciplinary center fosters neuroscience research that does not adhere to the traditional human/animal divide, allowing the CNC to develop models that link the understanding of neural circuits to cognition and behavior.

National Science Foundation Major Research Instrumentation: NSF 1625552

National Science Foundation Early-Concept Grants for Exploratory Research (NSF EAGER) Grant

Initiative for Physics and Mathematics of Neural Systems

The funded NSF EAGER grant provides funds to support pilot projects that involve interdisciplinary collaboration between physicists, mathematicians, and neuroscientists to develop new techniques for addressing questions in systems neuroscience. The pilot projects include endeavors involving Prof. Gene Stanley (Physics), Prof. Doug Rosene (Anatomy and Neurobiology), Prof. Eric Kolaczyk (Mathematics and Statistics), Prof. Rick Myers (Neurology), and Prof. Marc Howard (Psychological and Brain Sciences).

NSF EAGER grant PHY 1444389

Office of Naval Research Defense University Research Instrumentation Program (ONR DURIP) Grant

High Performance Computing Cluster for Cognitive Neuroscience Analysis and Modeling

This grant provides funding for a high-performance computing cluster for cognitive data analysis and modeling. New compute nodes with priority access for CSN/CNC members were installed at the Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center through the BU research computing buy-in program. The additional compute nodes enhance the quality and speed of data analysis and modeling work, especially that which examines symbolic processing. Prof. Chantal Stern (Psychological and Brain Sciences, CSN) is the principal investigator with co-investigators Prof. Michael Hasselmo (Psychological and Brain Sciences, CSN), Prof. Marc Howard (Psychological and Brain Sciences, CSN), Prof. Earl Miller (MIT), and Prof. David Badre (Brown).