Understanding sensorimotor circuits implementing zebrafish behavior

April 18, 2019 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
James Fitzgerald
James Fitzgerald

Theoretical and computational approaches are rapidly changing the landscape of biology, with theoretical considerations increasingly central to how fundamental biological questions are formulated and resolved. My formal education is in physics and mathematics, and my research focuses on building bridges between the quantitative sciences and biology. I began by studying molecular biophysics with Karl Freed and Tobin Sosnick at the University of Chicago. I then moved to the Physics Department at Stanford for graduate school, where my biophysics interests merged with neuroscience through research with Mark Schnitzer and Tom Clandinin. Before coming to Janelia, I was a Swartz Fellow in Theoretical Neuroscience in the Center for Brain Science at Harvard. This independent postdoctoral position gave me an opportunity to interact broadly with the neuroscience community at Harvard and beyond, and during this time I was fortunate to work with Haim Sompolinsky, Florian Engert, Damon Clark (Yale), Ruben Portugues (MPI Neurobiology), and many of their talented group members. At Janelia I am continuing to combine theoretical biophysics and neurobiology to understand how fundamental theoretical principles can reveal order in the stunning complexity of the brain.