Dopamine in the prefrontal cortex: Beyond net valence

College of Medicine – Phoenix Department of Translational Neurosciences


9 to 10 a.m., June 17, 2024


Health Sciences Education Building, Room B302
435 N. 5th St., Phoenix, AZ 85004

Join virtually

Event Description

In this Department of Translational Neurosciences guest seminar, Ian Ellwood, PhD, from Cornell University, will deliver a talk titled "Dopamine in the prefrontal cortex: Beyond net valence."

CME Information

There are no CME credits associated with this seminar.

Presenter Details

Ian Ellwood, PhD
Assistant Professor, Department of Neurobiology and Behavior
Cornell University

Ellwood is an assistant professor in the Department of Neurobiology and Behavior at Cornell University. His laboratory focusses primarily on the role of dopamine in the prefrontal cortex and dorsolateral striatum, which the lab examines using imaging and optogenetic techniques. They also study the connection between modern ideas in machine learning, such as transformer attention, and basic neural computations in the apical dendrites of pyramidal neurons.

Ellwood began his research career in theoretical physics and transitioned to neuroscience in 2010. Although today he runs an experimental lab, he retains a great interest in theoretical models of the brain. He was initially attracted to dopamine research because of the tight connection between dopamine release and reward prediction error theory. A major goal of his experimental work is to understand how recordings we perform in the prefrontal cortex and dorsolateral striatum can be fit together with a reinforcement learning framework.