Home > News > Scheirer Awarded Army Research Laboratory Grant

Scheirer Awarded Army Research Laboratory Grant

Virginia Watterson • DATE: March 31, 2016

Professor Walter Scheirer was awarded $50,000 as co-PI with Dr. L. Li, Biological Sciences, for their proposal titled, "Melatonin Modulation of the Olfacto-retinal Centrifugal Visual Pathway".

The goal of the proposed research is to elucidate the mechanisms and roles of cross-modal sensory information integration in modulation of vertebrate visual system functions. Specifically, using zebrafish models, we are investigating the incorporation of brain centrifugal signals (e.g., from the olfactory bulb and pineal gland) into retinal circuitries and evaluate the physiological relevance of centrifugal input in modulation of retinal sensitivity. Based on the results obtained from animal studies, we will create neural computation models that simulate the process of multi-organ sensory integration and predict the consequence of sensory integration in higher-order brain functions. Multi-disciplinary approaches which include molecular and cell biology, pharmacology, electrophysiology, and machine learning will be employed. The results will provide new strategies for translational research for better understanding of human brain function, as well as a unique capability for information fusion in artificial processing systems.