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Research interests

With a diverse background in neuroscience, neuroimaging, neurobiology and development, Dr Lowe is interested in imaging populations of neurons to reveal the underlying principles of computation and organisation associated with normal and altered sensory physiology. With a comprehensive background in several modalities that includes magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), optical imaging, intrinsic imaging and electrophysiology, Dr Lowe has:

 

  • Examined supra-spinal adaptations associated with perturbed sensory processing in a neuropathic pain model.
  • Enabled assays of cortical processing during whisking
  • Conducted pharmacological assays (fMRI) in pre-clinical models of addiction and acute and neurodegenerative diseases
  • Derived primary visual pathways using novel agents
  • Characterised and quantified the functional properties and topographic organisation of the visual thalamus and superior colliculus
  • Examined the functional output of the retina as inputs to the optic tectum
  • And revealed emergent properties of the optic tectum.

 

Current work is focused on extending experimental and analysis techniques to investigate novel retinal encoding strategies and the topographic organisation of visual inputs to the optic tectum. Building imaging datasets that cumulatively span visual space and collectively reside within the same standardised anatomical-space will enable an efficient means ofderiving what one ‘sees’ and how it is delivered to the brain. Dr Lowe’s future programme of research represents the intersection of brain mapping, sensory neuroscience and informatics to derive the functional architecture underlying sensory encoding in vertebrates. It is underpinned by a belief that such integrative science makes one of the most captivating questions in science tractable – what do the senses tell the brain?

 

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