Professional Experience

Massachusetts Institute of TechnologyCambridge, MA
Post-doctoral fellow
Aug 2015-present
  • Collaborated in a project to identify the role of astrocytes in neuron coding and motor learning. Performed analysis for neuronal encoding of forearm motion.
    • Built a lever push behavioral task rig and integrated it with 2p microscopy.
    • Decoded motion trajectory from neuronal activity with support vector regression, GRU-RNN and particle filtering; evaluated with a continuous estimate of mutual information based on k-nearest neighbors.
    • Built a GLM encoding model of behavior features in neuronal activity; found that astrocyte-manipulation wiped out neuron encoding of task delay.
  • Led a project in neuron ensemble formation in M1 during motor learning and transfer learning, by chronically tracking same neurons with 2p Ca2+ imaging. Developed a motorized lever push rig to apply force field or change movement gain.
  • Led an investigation in the effect of inhibition reduction in Rett Syndrome on both neuron coding and behavioral phenotypes, as well as their rescue. Adapted and validated a chloride imaging method to use with in vivo 2p imaging.
  • Led a team to collaborate in a larger translational project that created drug screening platform and screened drugs targeting a chloride transporter (KCC2) to treat Rett Syndrome. Directed research assistants and students to perform pre-clinical physiological and behavioral tests. Performed statistical analysis on the whole project, using mixed linear models and two-way aligned rank ANOVA.
  • Created and optimized automatic system for two-photon imaging data processing pipeline, including aligning, ROI extraction, and Ca2+ trace deconvolution.
MIT class: IAP 2017 Introduction to neuron population recording methods
Lecturer
2017
Gave introductory lectures on neuron recording methods including electrode, optical imaging, and two photon imaging methods.
Vanderbilt University class: BSCI 258 Vertebrate Physiology
Guest lecturer (invited by Dr. Clint Carter)
2012
Gave lectures on central nervous system, wrote and graded related test questions.

Education

Vanderbilt UniversityNashville, TN
PhD in Psychology, neuroscience focus/quantitative methods subfocus
Aug 2015
  • Worked in a team to investigate the modulatory effect of high order thalamic nucleus (pulvinar) on primary visual cortex using large scale electrode array. I designed and implemented a comprehensive set of control experiments to support the unexpected finding of strong modulation.
  • Led project on how pulvinar/V2 inputs to MT confer motion response differentially.
  • Led project to chart retinotopic map in primate lateral pulvinar with single electrode recording and 3D reconstruction. Managed two undergraduates on the project.
  • Collaborated with other laboratories in a project to identify the distribution pattern and targets of pulvinar neural projections to the cortex (V1 & MT); performed tracer injection, fluorescent confocal and electron microscopy.
Fudan UniversityShanghai
BS in Life Sciences
Jul 2009
  • Built continuous intrinsic signal optical imaging system; adapted the algorithm to allow online analysis.

Publications

Talks and Presentations