What are the neural processes that allow us to acquire and consolidate new motor skills such as learning to play the piano, ride a bicycle or swing a golf club? To address this question, my laboratory is doing experiments in awake-behaving mice while they perform a simple motor learning task known as Pavlovian eyeblink conditioning. We study neural processing in normal mice and in genetically-engineered mouse models of motor dysfunction using a multi-disciplinary approach that combines tools from psychology, in vivo neurophysiology and computational neuroscience. The goal of our research is to understand the link between neural activity, long-term plasticity and motor learning in the healthy brain, and then, to translate our findings into the clinical realm by identifying therapeutic entry-points for the treatment of movement disorders.
PSYC 109 Introduction to Brain and Behavior
Psychology Graduate Group; Neuroscience Graduate Group
Medina JF, Khodakhah K (2012) Spikes timed through inhibition. Nature 481(7382):446-7.
Medina JF (2011) The multiple roles of Purkinje cells in sensori-motor calibration: to predict, teach and command. Curr Opin Neurobiol 21 (4):616-22.
Chettih SN, McDougle SD, Ruffolo LI, Medina JF (2011) Adaptive timing of motor output in the mouse: the role of movement oscillations in eyelid conditioning. Front Integr Neurosci 5:72.
Medina JF, Lisberger, SG (2009) Encoding and decoding of learned smooth-pursuit eye movements in the floccular complex of the monkey cerebellum. Journal of Neurophysiology 102(4):2039-54.
Medina, JF, Lisberger SG (2008) Links from complex spikes to local plasticity and motor learning in the cerebellum of awake-behaving monkeys. Nature Neuroscience 11(10):1185-92.
Medina, JF, Lisberger SG (2007) Variation, signal, and noise in cerebellar sensory-motor processing for smooth-pursuit eye movements. Journal of Neuroscience 27(25):6832-42.
Carey, MR, Medina JF, Lisberger SG (2005) Instructive signals for motor learning from visual cortical area MT. Nature Neuroscience 8(6):813-819.
Medina JF, Carey MR, Lisberger SG (2005) The representation of time for motor learning. Neuron 45(1):157-167
Medina JF, Nores WL, Mauk MD (2002) Inhibition of climbing fibres is a signal for the extinction of conditioned eyelid responses. Nature 416:330-333
Medina JF, Repa JC, Mauk MD, LeDoux JE (2002) Parallels between cerebellum- and amygdala-dependent conditioning. Nature Reviews Neuroscience 3(2):122-131
Medina JF, Garcia KS, Mauk MD (2001) A mechanism for savings in the cerebellum. Journal of Neuroscience 21(11):4081-4089.
Medina JF, Mauk MD (2000) Computer simulation of cerebellar information processing. Nature Neuroscience 3:1205-1211.
Medina JF, Garcia KS, Nores WL, Taylor NM, Mauk MD (2000) Timing mechanisms in the cerebellum: Testing predictions of a large-scale computer simulation. Journal of Neuroscience 20(14):5516-5525.