Speaker: Christian O’Reilly, PhD
Research Associate, Montreal Neurological Institute-Hospital, McGill University
Registration: available now on Eventbrite.
Abstract: Modelling is the bedrock on which science and technology have been built. Nowadays, almost every part of manufactured objects – may it be a supercomputer or a simple light bulb -- is modelled and simulated in order for us to gain a comprehensive understanding of how it works and how it will react under different conditions. Compared to human-made objects, our ability to get a grip on complex biological systems such as the brain has been further hindered by these systems often being black boxes which inner workings were mostly unknown. As we gain more insights on the mechanisms at play, our capacity of modelling and simulating these systems increases and further shed lights on their remaining mysteries. In parallel, as the advances of medicine and science provide us with a finer appreciation of these biological systems, it also generates more intricate challenges. Tackling these new problems often requires integrating many sources of knowledge across fields and scales, from slow-evolving social factors to millisecond molecular interactions. Understanding complex multi-factorial and multidimensional neurodevelopmental issues like those present in the autistic spectrum disorder is such a problem. In this context, setting up a solid analytical framework empowered by modelling and simulations is even more important. In the first half of this talk the presenter will go over some of his experiences in analyzing and modelling neuronal systems at different scales, from the macroscopic whole-brain scale to the microscopic cellular scale. Then, in the second part, building on these experiences he will make a case for the importance of systematically benchmarking the different aspects of the brain across scales and integrating such knowledge into the analytical tools we use for scientific discoveries and clinical decisions.
This is a recruitment seminar:
Dr. O’Reilly is a candidate for a position as an Assistant or Associate Professor (Research) in the Department of Neurology and Neurosurgery at McGill University.
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