Circuit mechanisms underlying the action selections in Drosophila larva

Tomoko Ohyama
Department of Biology, McGill University
Friday, March 31, 2023 - 11:00am
Ramsay Wright Building, Room 432
Invited Speaker Seminar
To make optimal decisions and adapt successfully, animals need to make use all of the sensory inputs (e.g., visual, olfactory, tactile, noxious) they can detect, which initially arrive through selective channels. A central question of neuroscience is how nervous systems transform these initially segregated inputs into holistic multisensory representations, and how these representations are then used to guide the selection of actions. Our research is focused on understanding fundamental circuit mechanisms that underlie action selection. To this end, we study escape behaviors in larval Drosophila melanogaster. We combine high-throughput behavior analysis, connectome analysis using transmission electron microscopy reconstruction, and live imaging/physiology of neural activity. Using these techniques, my group is currently addressing how the nervous system 1) integrates sensory information to determine the final behavioral output, 2) generates properly ordered action sequences, and 3) mediates experience-dependent changes in behavior.
Professor Qian Lin
Dept of Cell and Systems Biology