Researchers are trying to unlock the complexities of the human brain with its billions of neurons by studying a much smaller-scale brain – of a fly. By comparison, a fly brain has approximately 100,000 nerve cells, and scientific techniques have recently advanced to finally allow for precise analysis of the neural circuits. Using this information, scientists are studying how motion information is computed in the visual system of a fly and how this information is decoded for navigation. These same basic principles of processing visual information are found in the human retina. Dr. Borst’s team have even recreated the brain circuits onboard a flying robot called “robofly.”
Dr. Alexander Borst is the director of the Max Planck Institute for Neurobiology and heads the Systems and Computational Neurobiology Department in Martinsread, Germany. He is a member of some of Europe’s most prestigious scientific organizations.
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