“I believe the best approach to repair a broken machine, is to first understand how the machine works. By the same logic, I believe the best approach to find cures for all brain diseases, is to first understand how the brain works.”
Through my research in the Platt lab, I aim to develop a new technique that would allow to temporarily deactivate specific brain areas in monkeys that are moving freely and interacting naturally with their peers. To do so, I will combine tools from molecular genetics, neuro-engineering, and primatology, in collaboration with several labs within UPenn and abroad. I will leverage the power of this non-traumatic, wireless tool to present monkeys with ecologically valid behavioral tasks while probing the causal necessity of various brain areas for cognitive and social information processing. I hope to generate new insights into the role of the cerebral cortex in complex decision making and develop new models of social and cognitive dysfunction in primates.