Our lab is interested in functional principles of neuronal circuits. We employ modern optical methods, including two-photon microscopy, allowing for activity imaging with high penetration depth and single cell resolution in living tissue. The main focus of our work is studying neuronal ensembles in the mouse auditory neocortex.


Of particular interest to our group are activity patterns of auditory corticofugal projection neurons located in the infragranular layers of the neocortex. Descending projections terminate in many auditory brainstem regions, modulating pathways upstream to the auditory cortex. Despite the importance of the corticofugal system in hearing, our knowledge of its physiology is very limited. Two-photon in vivo microscopy now offers the opportunity to identify specific corticofugal projection neurons and image their activity continuously over days to week. This enables us to observe learning-related changes in their activity patterns in behavioral contexts.

Furthermore, we study the effects of developmental aberrances in the auditory brainstem on the computation of the auditory cortex. 

We are also involved in the development of new analysis tools to decipher patterns in the complex data sets obtained by activity imaging.

We thank the German Research Foundation (DFG), the Nachwuchsring TU Kaiserslautern and the Landesschwerpunkt BioComp for support. Further details of our BioComp project can be found here.