The van der Meer lab studies the interplay between learning, memory, and prediction in rodents performing decision tasks. We record and decode the activity of many neurons simultaneously during behavior to reveal the neural representations and transformations that underlie cognitive processes such as deliberation, inference, and planning. Through a combination of neurobiological and computational approaches, we seek a fundamental understanding of these processes at the level of neural circuits, within and across interacting brain areas such as the hippocampus, striatum, and frontal cortex. We believe that in the long term, this understanding can support sustained innovation in the prevention and treatment of disorders such as addiction and obsessive-compulsive disorder.
What factors determine the content of hippocampal replay?
How do hippocampal sequences relate to behavior in complex environments?
What is the role of oscillations in routing the flow of information in cortico-hippocampal-striatal circuits?
Please see teh lab website above for an up-to-date listing
What determines the experiences we remember, and the ones we forget? How can a single experience contribute to multiple memories? How are those memories transformed to support adaptive decision making? In the van der Meer lab, we study these questions at the level of ensembles of single neurons, networks of neurons, and interactions between multiple systems in behaving rodents.
Rotation projects typically include the training of subjects on behavioral tasks, assembly of electrode arrays, acute and recovery surgery, recording the activity of multiple single neurons and local field potentials in multiple brain areas, and manipulation of brain activity with electrical, chemogenetic, and optogenetic methods.