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New article in PLoS Computational Biology: Self-Organized Criticality in Developing Neuronal Networks

New article in PLoS Computational Biology: Self-Organized Criticality in Developing Neuronal Networks

PLoS Computational Biology has published an article, co-authored by members of the BCCN Göttingen, the Bernstein Center Freiburg, and the Neuroinformatics Group of Amsterdam University. In their paper, the authors describe the maturation of cortical cell cultures and their mathematical analysis and network modeling to elucidate the different phases observed during development.

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New article in the Journal of Neuroscience: Gating of signal propagation in spiking neural networks by balanced and correlated excitation and inhibition

New article in the Journal of Neuroscience: Gating of signal propagation in spiking neural networks by balanced and correlated excitation and inhibition

In every waking minute, we have to make decisions – sometimes within a split second. Neuroscientists at the Bernstein Center Freiburg have now discovered a possible explanation how the brain chooses between alternative options. The key lies in extremely fast changes in the communication between single nerve cells.

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Children's holiday program at the Bernstein Center

Children's holiday program at the Bernstein Center

During this year's autumn school break, the BCF hosted the holiday program of the University's family service. In the first week of November, the children of university employees spent their time with two educators and explored the world of ghosts and vampires in our center.

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BCF launches new PhD program

BCF launches new PhD program

The Bernstein Center Freiburg consolidates its role as a hub for neuroscience with the launch of the PhD program iCoNeT. Over four years, the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and the Federal Ministry of Education and Research will fund this international PhD program with up to 400,000 €.

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Joint Master in Neuroscience wins „Prix Bartholdi“

Joint Master in Neuroscience wins „Prix Bartholdi“

On November 5, 2010, the Joint Master in Neuroscience was awarded this year’s „Prix Bartholdi“. The award recognises the efforts of the universities of Strasbourg, Basel and Freiburg in creating a Master’s programme that combines the strengths of neuroscientific institutions in the Upper Rhine valley to offer an international degree in the highest standards.

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“Emotions”: Art exhibition at the BCF

“Emotions”: Art exhibition at the BCF

During November and December, the hallways of the BCF will become the venue of an art exhibition: Oliver Wrobel presents a series of his works, titled “Emotions”.

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IMTEK photo wins first prize for scientific photography

IMTEK photo wins first prize for scientific photography

As delicate and graceful as a fragile flower blooming in the sun: that's what microsystems engineering looks like, at least through the lens of scientific photographer Bernd Müller. Müller was awarded first prize in the category photography/single photo in the PUNKT awards for scientific journalism.

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Talk is silver, silence is golden: effects of refractoriness on neuronal signalling

Talk is silver, silence is golden: effects of refractoriness on neuronal signalling

Upon first view, the basic building blocks of our brain – the neurons – appear to have a serious limitation: no matter how much excitation they receive from other nerve cells, there is a limit on the frequency at which they will respond by emitting electrical pulses of their own. Scientists have now shown that the forced pause between any two consecutive impulses is actually an advantageous trait.

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Prediction of epileptic seizures by analyzing brain waves

Prediction of epileptic seizures by analyzing brain waves

A team of physicists, physicians and neuroscientists at the Bernstein Center of the University Freiburg made a step forward towards the ambitious goal of predicting epileptic seizures, as published in the latest issue of the journal “Epilepsia”. Professor Andreas Schulze-Bonhage, head of the Epilepsy Center at the University Hospital Freiburg: “Unfortunately, a considerable fraction of all epilepsy patients do not respond well to commonly used pharmaceuticals. For these patients, an automatic prediction of their suddenly occurring seizures would offer great benefit – they could prepare for the epileptic attack, for example by taking fast-acting medicine.”

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Book publication by BCF/RIKEN members: "Analysis of Parallel Spike Trains"

Book publication by BCF/RIKEN members: "Analysis of Parallel Spike Trains"

Stefan Rotter (BCF) and Sonja Gruen (RIKEN Brain Science Institute, Japan and Bernstein Center Berlin) edited the book "Analysis of Parallel Spike Trains". With 20 individual contributions, written by leading experts in the field, the book offers a comprehensive overview over state-of-the-art methods for the analysis of coordinated neuronal activity in the brain. It is directed at scientists and advanced students from the fields of Systems Neurobiology and Computational Neuroscience. The book is available now.

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Article by BCF/RIKEN members published in PLoS Computational Biology

Article by BCF/RIKEN members published in PLoS Computational Biology

Using computer simulations of brain-like networks, researchers from Germany and Japan have discovered why nerve cells transmit information through small electrical pulses. Not only allows this the brain to process information much faster than previously thought: single neurons are already able to multiply, opening the door to more complex forms of computing.

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Nature Reviews Neuroscience publishes article by BCF members

Nature Reviews Neuroscience publishes article by BCF members

Reliable propagation of spiking activity in the brain is vital for information processing. BCF members Arvind Kumar, Stefan Rotter and Ad Aertsen propose in a new review article that under certain conditions asynchronous and synchronous propagation of spiking activity can co-exist in a modular neuronal network, and they suggest experimental strategies to test this hypothesis.

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Advanced Course in Computational Neuroscience started

Advanced Course in Computational Neuroscience started

On August 2, the Advanced Course in Computational Neuroscience (ACCN) started at the Bernstein Center Freiburg. For one month, 30 students from around the world will attend lectures and work on projects spanning the whole width of this dynamic field of research.

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A new hub for the neurosciences

A new hub for the neurosciences

Bernstein Center consolidates research in Computational Neuroscience and Neurotechnology

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Position of Professor of Neurobiology and Neurotechnology

Position of Professor of Neurobiology and Neurotechnology

The Faculty of Biology at the Albert-Ludwig University Freiburg invites applications for the position of Full Professor (BesGr. W3, tenured) of Neurobiology and Neurotechnology to be filled as early as possible.

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BFNT member Niels Birbaumer receives Helmholtz Medal

BFNT member Niels Birbaumer receives Helmholtz Medal

The Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities honors Niels Birbaumer with one of its highest awards.

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New publication by BCF members in the Journal of Computational Neuroscience

New publication by BCF members in the Journal of Computational Neuroscience

Jens Kremkow, Laurent U. Perrinet, Guillaume S. Masson and Ad Aertsen published an article on "Functional consequences of correlated excitatory and inhibitory conductances in cortical networks" in the journal's current issue

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Honorary doctorate for member of the Bernstein Center Freiburg

Honorary doctorate for member of the Bernstein Center Freiburg

For his important contributions to the field of neuroanatomy, the Goethe University Frankfurt bestowed an honorary degree upon Prof. Michael Frotscher.

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BCF members to edit special issue of Frontiers in Computational Neuroscience

BCF members to edit special issue of Frontiers in Computational Neuroscience

Arvind Kumar, Stefano Cardanobile, Stefan Rotter and Ad Aertsen will be guest editors of a special topic issue of "Frontiers in Computational Neuroscience", an open access journal. The topic is "Structure, dynamics and function of brains: exploring relations and constraints".

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Junior Professorship Programme supports research on neuronal basis of movements

Junior Professorship Programme supports research on neuronal basis of movements

The activity of neurons is the basis for movement patterns in animals and humans alike. Up to now, it is largely unknown how the structure and activity of a neuronal network shapes the composition of complex movements. Abigail Morrison, Junior Professor at the Faculty of Biology and the Bernstein Center at the University of Freiburg, is trying to find an answer to this question. The Baden-Württemberg Ministry of Science now awarded her research with a grant of 150,000 €.

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