Navigation Links
MIT: Mimicking the brain, in silicon
Date:11/15/2011

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. For decades, scientists have dreamed of building computer systems that could replicate the human brain's talent for learning new tasks.

MIT researchers have now taken a major step toward that goal by designing a computer chip that mimics how the brain's neurons adapt in response to new information. This phenomenon, known as plasticity, is believed to underlie many brain functions, including learning and memory.

With about 400 transistors, the silicon chip can simulate the activity of a single brain synapse a connection between two neurons that allows information to flow from one to the other. The researchers anticipate this chip will help neuroscientists learn much more about how the brain works, and could also be used in neural prosthetic devices such as artificial retinas, says Chi-Sang Poon, a principal research scientist in the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology.

Poon is the senior author of a paper describing the chip in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences the week of Nov. 14. Guy Rachmuth, a former postdoc in Poon's lab, is lead author of the paper. Other authors are Mark Bear, the Picower Professor of Neuroscience at MIT, and Harel Shouval of the University of Texas Medical School.

Modeling synapses

There are about 100 billion neurons in the brain, each of which forms synapses with many other neurons. A synapse is the gap between two neurons (known as the presynaptic and postsynaptic neurons). The presynaptic neuron releases neurotransmitters, such as glutamate and GABA, which bind to receptors on the postsynaptic cell membrane, activating ion channels. Opening and closing those channels changes the cell's electrical potential. If the potential changes dramatically enough, the cell fires an electrical impulse called an action potential.

All of this synaptic activity depends on the ion channels, which control the flow of charged atoms
'/>"/>

Contact: Caroline McCall
cmccall5@mit.edu
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Some vocal-mimicking animals, particularly parrots, can move to a musical beat
2. Wildlife Conservation Society finds wild cat mimicking monkey calls
3. Boston Univ., Veterans Affairs find sports brain trauma may cause disease mimicking ALS
4. Mimicking nature, water-based artificial leaf produces electricity
5. Mimicking nature at the nanoscale: Selective transport across a biomimetic nanopore
6. Changing fine structure constant, packing spheres tighter, and mimicking complex birdsongs
7. Social interactions can alter gene expression in the brain, and vice versa
8. Knee injuries may start with strain on the brain, not the muscles
9. Experimental drug shows promise against brain, prostate cancers
10. UR study reveals chemos toxicity to brain, possible treatment
11. Regular aerobic exercise is good for the brain, Pitt team says
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:8/31/2015)... Research and Markets ( http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/st5b3m/saudi_arabia ) has ... Sensors Market - Growth, Trends & Forecasts (2014-2020)" ... Arabia Biomedical Sensors market is estimated at $0.23 billion ... period 2014-2020 The near future will bring ... of each individual. These sensors can be set to ...
(Date:8/25/2015)... and BELLEVUE, Wash. , ... in advanced robotic systems, announced today it will unveil ... ground vehicle (UGV), at the National Tactical Officers Association ... The Guardian S is the first-ever commercially ... of years of research and in-field trials and is ...
(Date:8/20/2015)... PLEASANTON, Calif. , Aug. 20, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ... focused on consumers that are active and healthy. ... used in the hospital environment to help improve ... released a video from the Wearable Technologies ... MD discussed new applications for wearables in healthcare.    ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Saudi Arabia Biomedical Sensors Market Report 2015 - Growth, Trends & Forecasts (2014-2020) 2Sarcos to Debut First-of-its-Kind Snake Robot 2Sarcos to Debut First-of-its-Kind Snake Robot 3Leaf Healthcare Releases Video from Wearable Technology Conference on New Applications for Wearables in the Hospital Environment 2Leaf Healthcare Releases Video from Wearable Technology Conference on New Applications for Wearables in the Hospital Environment 3
... , Oct. 15, 2013 Medbox, Inc. (OTC ... industry specific consulting services and patented systems to the ... sheet with a medical marijuana research and development laboratory ... terms, Medbox has been engaged in an ongoing consulting ...
... 2013 Babcock Genetics, Inc., a worldwide supplier of swine ... a new genetic program available to swine producers. ... that would offer a higher level of profitability to our ... . "We are maximizing genetic improvement by selecting lines that ...
... cities is often an overlooked resource. Years of manufacturing or ... scare residents away from using the land. As the local ... desire to grow food in cities with the fear that ... 10:35 am, Kristen McIvor of the Pierce Conservation District will ...
Cached Biology News:Medbox Partners with Licensed Medical Cannabis Laboratory and Cultivation Center in Canada 2Medbox Partners with Licensed Medical Cannabis Laboratory and Cultivation Center in Canada 3Medbox Partners with Licensed Medical Cannabis Laboratory and Cultivation Center in Canada 4Fostering community gardens in an area with historic soil contamination 2
(Date:8/31/2015)... Research and Markets ( http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/k6lcp2/mexico_biomedical ) has announced the ... Growth, Trends & Forecasts (2014-2020)" report to their ... market is estimated at $0.20 billion by 2018 at ... The near future will bring biomedical sensors that ... These sensors can be set to trigger alerts when ...
(Date:8/31/2015)... , Aug. 31, 2015  For people with ... brighten their day. The biotechnology company, located in the ... one of the best potential therapies yet for people ... entitled, " Correction of Down syndrome and Edwards syndrome ... journal DNA Research . Elixirgen plans to develop ...
(Date:8/31/2015)... , Aug. 31, 2015  US-Australian drug ... NVGN ) today confirmed its comprehensive scientific review ... technology platforms in areas of unmet patient need. ... the remaining preclinical projects prior to entering into ... compounds. Acting Chief Executive Officer, ...
(Date:8/31/2015)... LabStyle Innovations Corp. (OTCQB: DRIO), developer ... it recently closed a round of funding totaling ... support the global rollout and initial U.S. commercial ... management solution that includes novel software applications combined ... device, and for working capital purposes. The Dario ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Mexico Biomedical Sensors Market Report 2015-2020 2New Down syndrome therapy discovered 2Novogen Announces The Outcome Of A Comprehensive Science Review 2Novogen Announces The Outcome Of A Comprehensive Science Review 3Novogen Announces The Outcome Of A Comprehensive Science Review 4Novogen Announces The Outcome Of A Comprehensive Science Review 5Novogen Announces The Outcome Of A Comprehensive Science Review 6LabStyle Innovations Closes $2.5 Million Funding to Support Global Rollout of Dario Diabetes Management Solution 2LabStyle Innovations Closes $2.5 Million Funding to Support Global Rollout of Dario Diabetes Management Solution 3LabStyle Innovations Closes $2.5 Million Funding to Support Global Rollout of Dario Diabetes Management Solution 4
... announced that its executives will be speaking at the following,investor conferences, ... Credit Suisse Global Health Care Conference, Phoenix, AZ ... Mountain Time, Piper Jaffray Health Care ... 2, 2008 at 2.00 p.m. Eastern Time Accessing Webcasts, ...
... (Nasdaq: KOOL ), a leading supplier of innovative ... that it will be,participating in the Rodman & Renshaw ... The Company,s presentation by Dr. William Osgood, the Company,s ... am, Pacific Standard,Time), and will be held at the ...
... role in causing asthma. Now, a team of researchers ... noninvasively visualize in real-time eosinophil responses in the lungs ... asthma (experimental allergic airway inflammation); they hope that these ... of treatments (both old and new) for the disease. ...
Cached Biology Technology:Cepheid to Webcast Upcoming Financial Presentations 2ThermoGenesis Presentation at Rodman & Renshaw Conference 2