Ralph Adolphs: The Social Brain and Autism


Ralph Adolphs (PhD ’93)

Bren Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience and Professor of Biology; Director of the Caltech Brain Imaging Center

My laboratory uses cognitive neuroscience approaches to understand human social behavior.  This includes techniques such as brain imaging, eyetracking, and electrophysiology, and makes comparisons between several different patient populations.  One focus has been to compare high-functioning people with autism to neurological patients who have focal lesions or disconnections of brain structures.  Another focus has been, in collaboration with local neurosurgeons, to record activity from single cells in the brains of patients who have implanted depth electrodes.  Together, these varied approaches are revealing to us how the brain processes information from faces, how we use such information to understand other people, and how this process can dysfunction in autism.

Recovery of the Function in Major Spinal Cord Injury Using Epidural Stimulation


Joel Burdick

Richard L. and Dorothy M. Hayman Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Bioengineering


Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) affects nearly 1,250,000 people in the U.S. This talk focuses on a recent collaboration between Caltech, UCLA, and Univ. of Louisville aimed at developing new therapies for motor complete SCI based on multi-electrode arrays implanted over the lumbosacral spinal cord. SCI patients receiving this therapy have been able to stand independently and make some voluntary movements.  They have made surprising gains in cardiovascular health as well as improved autonomic function such as bladder, bowel, and blood pressure regulation.  

R2 D2 - Research to Discovery x Delivery_ Basic Research as the Driver of Medical Advances

Pamela Björkman, Max Delbrück Professor of Biology and Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute Research Laboratory, Caltech

Raymond Deshaies, Professor of Biology; Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute

Axel Scherer, Bernard A. Neches Professor of Electrical Engineering, Applied Physics, and Physics; Co-Director, Kavli Nanoscience Institute

Shu-ou Shan, Professor of Chemistry

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