Tatiana Engel is an assistant professor of neuroscience at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. She received her M.Sc. in physics from Lomonosov Moscow State University in Russia, and she received her Ph.D. in theoretical physics from the Humboldt University of Berlin, Germany in 2007. She completed her postdoctoral training in computational neuroscience at Yale University and Stanford University. In 2017, she joined the faculty at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory.
Engel’s laboratory develops theory, models and computational methods that leverage newly available large-scale recordings from behaving animals to understand how activity is orchestrated across neural populations to drive behavior. Sensory, cognitive and motor functions are supported by networks of neurons distributed throughout the brain. The mammalian brain comprises hundreds of millions of neurons densely and recurrently interconnected within and across regions. We investigate how global neural activity is coordinated across this elaborate anatomical circuitry to produce a unified behavioral output. We develop algorithms which can uncover neural population dynamics on single trials in experimental data. We also construct network models to predict how population dynamics arise from the anatomical connectivity and how they change under influence of neuromodulators accompanying changes of behavioral states. Our work benefits from close collaborations with experimental neuroscience laboratories that are collecting neurophysiological data in animals engaged in sophisticated tasks, such as attention, decision making, and learning.
Current Projects: International Brain Lab