Neuroscience: People

Nikolai Chapochnikov

Flatiron Research Fellow, Neuroscience, Center for Computational Biology

Nikolai M. Chapochnikov joined the Simons Foundation in 2017 as a member of the Neuroscience group in the Center for Computational Biology. His research focuses on analyzing large neuronal datasets and investigating the computation performed by neuronal networks. Chapochnikov was a postdoctoral fellow and doctoral student at the Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization and the University Medical Center Göttingen, Germany. There, he did research in computational neuroscience and biophysics, making models of synaptic transmission and neuronal spiking. Chapochnikov holds an M.Sc. in physics from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Dmitri Chklovskii

Dmitri ‘Mitya’ Chklovskii, Ph.D.

Group Leader for Neuroscience, Center for Computational Biology

Before coming to the Simons Foundation in 2014, Mitya Chklovskii was a group leader at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s (HHMI) Janelia Farm Research Campus in Ashburn, Virginia. Chklovskii also initiated and led a collaborative project at HHMI that assembled the largest-ever connectome, a comprehensive map of neural connections in the brain. Before that, he worked at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in New York, where he founded the first theoretical neuroscience group, having worked there as a first assistant, and later an associate professor.

As group leader for neuroscience, Chklovskii will lead an effort to understand how the brain analyzes complex datasets streamed by sensory organs, in an attempt to create artificial neural systems. He holds a Ph.D. in physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Andrea Giovannucci

Andrea Giovannucci, Ph.D.

Data Scientist, Neuroscience, Center for Computational Biology

Andrea Giovannucci joined the Center for Computational Biology as a data scientist in the Neuroscience group in 2015. He is responsible for the development of calcium imaging software, general-purpose neural networks and other potential data-intensive computing projects. Prior to joining the foundation, Giovannucci was a post-doctoral fellow at the Neuroscience Institute at Princeton University. He has a Ph.D. in computer science from Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona in Spain and a B.S. in electronic engineering from Politecnico di Milano in Italy.

Cengiz Pehlevan, Ph.D.

Research Scientist, Neuroscience, Center for Computational Biology

Cengiz Pehlevan joined Center for Computational Biology’s Neuroscience group in 2015 to build theories of neural computation and to develop methods to analyze large neuroscience datasets in order to test such theories. Prior to joining the foundation, Pehlevan was a postdoctoral associate at the Janelia Research Campus of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute in Virginia. There, he focused on theoretical neuroscience, working to construct a matrix factorization model of neural computation. Before that, he was a Swartz Fellow at Harvard University, where he studied sensory selectivity in neural network models, neural mechanisms underlying modification of motor timing, and an integrated neuromechanical model of crawling. Pehlevan holds a B.Sc. in physics and in electrical and electronics engineering from Bogazici University in Istanbul, and an Sc.M. and Ph.D. in physics from Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island.

Eftychios A. Pnevmatikakis, Ph.D.

Research Scientist, Neuroscience, Center for Computational Biology

Eftychios Pnevmatikakis joined the Simons Foundation after working as a postdoctoral research scientist in the department of statistics and the Center for Theoretical Neuroscience at Columbia University. During his postdoctoral research, Pnevmatikakis created efficient machine-learning and optimization algorithms for statistical analysis of large-scale electrophysiology and optical-physiology data. As part of CCB’s neuroscience group, Pnevmatikakis develops methods and software for analysis of large sets of neuroscience data, as well as theories of neural computation. He holds a Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Columbia University.

Mariano Tepper

Mariano Tepper, Ph.D.

Flatiron Research Fellow, Neuroscience, Center for Computational Biology

Mariano Tepper joined the foundation in 2016 as a research fellow in the Neuroscience group at the Center for Computational Biology. His research focuses on image processing, computer vision, pattern recognition and machine learning. Tepper comes to the foundation from Duke University, where he was a research scientist and project manager. Prior to working at Duke, he was postdoctoral research associate at the University of Minnesota. Tepper holds a Ph.D. and licentiate degree in computer science from the Universidad de Buenos Aires in Argentina and an M.S. in applied mathematics from the École Normale Supérieure de Cachan in France.