Our research topic is to understand how brain neuronal networks represent the outside world and how experience durably modifies the activity of such networks.
Brain functions such as sensations and thoughts depend on the coordinated activity of neuronal networks in precise spatial and temporal sequences. The aim of my research group is to reveal the mechanisms underlying such coordinated cortical activity. We are using the first cortical area reached by visual inputs, the primary visual cortex, as a model system of cortical integration.
By using two-photon calcium imaging combined with electrophysiological recordings in awake behaving mice, our current projects investigate:
- how behavioral context modulates neuronal activity in the primary visual cortex
- which mechanisms underlie the action of neuromodulators in cortical networks
- how visual experience durably modifies the activity of cortical neuronal networks.
Using such information, we apply the same combination of methods to study how this network activity is disrupted in the brain of mouse models for autistic spectrum disorders and intellectual disabilities.
For further information, please also see: http://www.ed.ac.uk/schools-departments/integrative-physiology/staff-profiles/nathalie-rochefort/
Grienberger C., Rochefort NL., Adelsberger H., Henning HA., Hill DN., Reichwald J., Staufenbiel M., Konnerth A. (2012) Staged decline of neuronal function in vivo in an animal model of Alzheimer’s Disease. Nat. Comm. , 3:774.
Rochefort NL., Narushima M., Grienberger C., Marandi N., Hill DN., Konnerth A. (2011) Development of direction-selectivity in mouse cortical neurons, Neuron, 71 (3) :425-32.
Jia H., Rochefort NL., Chen X., Konnerth A. (2011) Dendritic organization of sensory input to cortical neurons in vivo. Nat. Protoc. , 6 (1) : 28-35.
Jia H., Rochefort NL., Chen X., Konnerth A. (2010) Dendritic organization of sensory input to cortical neurons in vivo. Nature , 464 (7293) : 1307-12.
Rochefort NL., Garaschuk O., Milos RI., Narushima M., Marandi N., Pichler B., Kovalchuk Y., Konnerth A. (2009) ´Sparsification´ of neuronal activity in the visual cortex at eye-opening. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U S A , 106 (35) : 15049-54.