News

2017

Viviana GradinaruViviana Gradinaru (BS '05)—assistant professor of biology and biologicalengineering, Heritage Medical Research Institute Investigator, and director of the Center for Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience at Caltech's Tianqiao and Chrissy Chen Institute for Neuroscience—has been named a Moore Inventor Fellow by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation. The Moore Inventor Fellows program awards $825,000 over three years to "early-career innovators at U.S. universities with a high potential to accelerate progress in scientific research, environmental conservation and patient care," according to the program website. [Caltech Press Release] 11.07.17

Viviana GradinaruThe Takeda Pharmaceutical Company and the New York Academy of Sciences have announced the winners of the inaugural Innovators in Science Award "for commitment to and excellence in neuroscience research." Viviana Gradinaru (BS '05)—assistant professor of biology and biological engineering, Heritage Medical Research Institute Investigator, and director of the Center for Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience at Caltech's Tianqiao and Chrissy Chen Institute for Neuroscience—has been named the winner of the Early-Career Scientist Award. [Caltech Press Release] 10.30.17

Viviana GradinaruFive Caltech researchers have received funding for three projects from the National Institutes of Health's Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative. [Caltech Press Release] 10.23.17

 

Viviana Gradinaru (BS '05)—assistant professor of biology and biological engineering, Heritage Medical Research Institute Investigator, and director of the Center for Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience of the Tianqiao and Chrissy Chen Institute for Neuroscience at Caltech—has been named a Vallee Scholar by the Bert L and N Kuggie Vallee Foundation. She is one of five scientists chosen from an international pool of nominated early-career researchers. The scholarship provides each recipient $250,000 in funding for basic biomedical research. [Caltech Press Release] 10.05.17

The human brain is constantly abuzz with electrical activity as brain cells, called neurons, respond to sensory input and give rise to the world we perceive. Six particular regions of the brain, called face patches, contain neurons that respond more to faces than to any other type of object. New research from Caltech shows how perturbations in these face cells alter perception, answering a longstanding question in cognitive science. [Caltech Press Release] 03.29.17

Lamprey are slimy, parasitic eel-like fish, one of only two existing species of vertebrates that have no jaw. While many would be repulsed by these creatures, lamprey are exciting to biologists because they are so primitive, retaining many characteristics similar to their ancient ancestors and thus offering answers to some of life's biggest evolutionary questions. Now, by studying the lamprey, Caltech researchers have discovered an unexpected mechanism for the evolution of the neurons of the peripheral nervous system—nerves outside of the brain and spinal cord. [Caltech Press Release] 03.20.17

Fruit flies are capable of impressive aerial maneuvers, as is grudgingly acknowledged by anyone who has unsuccessfully tried to swat away one of the familiar kitchen pests. Interestingly, the flies perform these nimble evasive movements using only 12 flight muscles, each controlled by one brain cell, or neuron. In comparison, hummingbirds can produce almost identical aerial patterns but use 100 times more neurons per muscle. [Caltech Press Release] 01.26.17

Eyes, fragile but crucial for human and almost all other animal life, pose difficult challenges, both for basic research and for effective solutions to the medical problems that such research investigates. Caltech professors Yu-Chong Tai and Hyuck Choo work with students and postdocs along with distinguished University of Southern California (USC) faculty and medical professionals on a range of these challenges, using multidisciplinary approaches spanning nanotechnology, electrical engineering, biomedical engineering, physics, optics, photonics, and optomechanical engineering. [Caltech Press Release] 01.03.17