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Neural circuits of cognition

Adil Khan

Adil Khan

Sir Henry Dale Research Fellow

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A fundamental problem in neuroscience is to understand how the brain generates purposeful, coordinated behaviour to achieve internally represented goals. Cognitive control, a hallmark of intelligent behaviour, includes functions such as working memory, decision making and attentional switching. While these phenomena have been traditionally studied in humans and primates, rodents such as mice have sophisticated cognitive abilities as well, and provide an opportunity to develop a detailed circuit-level understanding of cognitive processes. Our lab studies cognition in mice by combining chronic in-vivo two photon calcium imaging of multiple cell classes, targeted optogenetic manipulations, viral vector based functional circuit mapping, and quantitative mouse behavioural assays. We study how projections from prefrontal cortical neurons bias the processing of different sensory and motor areas, through interactions between local network dynamics and long-range inputs.

Selected publications

Poort J, Wilmes KA, Blot A, Chadwick A, Sahani M, Clopath C, Mrsic-Flogel TD, Hofer SB, Khan AG (2022) Learning and attention increase visual response selectivity through distinct mechanisms. Neuron 110: 686-697.e6

Chadwick A, Khan A, Poort J, Blot A, Hofer S, Mrsic-Flogel T, Sahani M (2021) Learning shapes cortical dynamics to enchance integration of relevant sensory input bioRxiv

Khan AG, Hofer SB (2018) Contextual signals in visual cortex. Curr Opin Neurobiol 52: 131-138

Khan AG, Poort J, Chadwick A, Blot A, Sahani M, Mrsic-Flogel TD, Hofer SB (2018) Distinct learning-induced changes in stimulus selectivity and interactions of GABAergic interneuron classes in visual cortex. Nat Neurosci 21: 851-859

Poort J, Khan AG, Pachitariu M, Nemri A, Orsolic I, Krupic J, Bauza M, Sahani M, Keller GB, Mrsic-Flogel TD, Hofer SB (2015) Learning Enhances Sensory and Multiple Non-sensory Representations in Primary Visual Cortex. Neuron 86: 1478-90