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Salk professor receives Howard Hughes Medical Institute Collaborative Innovation Award

Ed Callaway

Ed Callaway

Edward Callaway, professor in the Salk's Systems Neurobiology Laboratories, has been selected as a participating investigator by a team that is the recipient of a Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) Collaborative Innovation Award (HCIA).

Callaway will work together with project leader Dr. Liqun Luo, an HHMI investigator at Stanford University, on a collaborative research study entitled "Mapping Global Patterns of Connectivity in the Mammalian Brain." The team plans to develop a suite of tools for mapping neuronal connections in the complete mouse brain, including those that extend across long distances, and use those tools to study the organization of neural circuits and how they are affected by specific neurotransmitters.

Launched by the HHMI in 2008 as part of a four-year, $40 million pilot project, the HCIA program supports projects led by heads of its research laboratories that have the potential of being transformative and solving important scientific problems. The goal is to allow groups of scientists to devote substantial time and energy to pursuing collaborative research. The award is intended to encourage both HHMI investigators and participating scientists to undertake projects that are new and so large in scope that they require a team of collaborators with a range of expertise.

Callaway's research is aimed at understanding how neural circuits give rise to perception and behavior and focuses primarily on the organization and function of neural circuits in the visual cortex. Relating neural circuits to function in the visual system, where correlations between neural activity and perception can be directly tested, provides fundamental insight into the basic mechanisms by which cortical circuits mediate perception.