Theoretical Neuroscience

Prof. Dr. Richard Kempter

The research group “Theoretical Neuroscience” is interested in the neural basis of learning and memory. Research involves the mathematical modeling and analysis of synapses, neurons and networks of neurons. Analysis and computer simulations are used to study the dynamics of synaptic short-term and long-term plasticity, the dynamics of single neurons, the interaction of neurons in recurrently coupled networks that store and process information. Of particular interest are mechanisms that control the development and functional stability of neural circuits of spiking neurons. Our main goal is to understand how neuronal networks can remain susceptible to learning, and, at the same time, be able to maintain a robust balance against instabilities. Understanding the underlying neural mechanisms that prevent neuronal tissue from developing pathological activity patterns may help to uncover origins of functional brain illnesses, and will lead to practical implications for designing remedial therapies. Research projects are always in close collaboration with experimental groups. Experimental models are the hippocampus and the early auditory system.