Georgia Tech Neuro Seminar Series

"Neural Circuits for Vision in the Natural World"    

*To participate virtually, CLICK HERE

Cristopher Niell, Ph.D
Associate Professor, Department of Biology
University of Oregon

*Lunch provided for in-person attendees

Cris Niell is an academic expert in neuroscience, interested in understanding how the brain interprets sensory information and drives our actions. At the University of Oregon, he is an associate professor of biology and a member of the UO's Institute of Neuroscience. His lab has developed methods to study the activity of neurons and brain regions during perception and cognition, with applications that range from childhood development and education to understanding autism and schizophrenia.

Neil spent most of his research career studying the development and function of neural circuits in the visual system. As a graduate student in Dr. Stephen Smith’s lab at Stanford University, he used two-photon imaging in the zebrafish optic tectum to study both functional receptive field properties and the developmental processes of growth and synapse formation. He then began work on the mouse visual cortex, in the lab of Dr. Michael Stryker at UC San Francisco, utilizing the mouse as genetic model system to investigate aspects of cortical organization and development. In his lab at University of Oregon, they focuse on understanding visual processing from the level of individual neurons up to brain-wide pathways, particularly in the context of behavior and different brain states.


Research in the Niell lab is focused on understanding how the visual system performs the computations underlying our perception of the natural world, and how this enables different types of behaviors. We are pursuing this in three main branches of research : Natural visual behavior, Visual processing and brain states, and Neural circuits for vision in the octopus.