We have recently developed a new collaborative venture between iFReC - Japan's leading immunology research institute, CiNet and Cambridge University. The goal of this initiative is to explore theoretical and experimental models of the injury process - studying how the brain orchestrates integrated behavioural, immunological, and physiological responses to injury, and reciprocally how peripheral tissue damage influences brain function. This program extends our models of pain to general allostatic control mechanisms of injury.
Two new people have been recruited to develop this project. Aya Nakae (Assoc. Prof.) will develop projects integrating high resolution molecular and immunological neuroimaging, optogenetic fMRI, and neurophysiological responses in rodents. Masaki Maruyama (Assis. Prof.) will develop theoretical and computational models of allostasis, brain network function, and lead imaging studies in human models of injury.
This work is being funded by very generous support of the World Premier Institiute (JSPS) funding initiative. If you are interested in joining this project, to study either animals or humans or both), then please contact me about some of the funding mechanisms that are available.
An image from Maria Joao's paper reviewing MVPA (brain decoding) and pain has made it on the front cover of Pain (April). Maria's paper probes the benefts and limitations of MVPA, arguing that it holds real promise for clinical and bioengineering applications, but that it's value for understanding the underying neurobiology of pain information processing is less straightforward.
Congratulations to Suyi Zhang for receiving a W D Armstrong Studentship to undertake her PhD at CBL, Cambridge. Armstrong awards support pioneering research in bioengineering at Cambridge, and Suyi will be continuing her research into pain, reinforcement learning, and brain-machine interfaces.
Japan's leading funding agency - JSPS - offers a fantastic fellowship program for post-doctoral researchers from abroad. It is fully (and generously) funded. If you are interested in working in my lab, or any of my colleagues at CiNet, please check here for more details.