Arthur (Mengzhen) Zhang
Thesis title: Predictive coding impairment in mouse models of autism spectrum disorder
MSc by Research in Integrative Neuroscience
University of Edinburgh
Cognitive Science Demonstrator
Current research interestsPredictive coding in visual system
Exisiting theoretical framework and psychophysical studies have led to the hypothesis that autism spectrum disorder (ASD) phenotypes may be manifestations of underlying impairment in predictive abilities, which is in turn caused by cortical sensory dysfunction. This project aims to test this hypothesis by first conducting in vivo recordings in anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and primary visual cortex (V1) in WT mice during a visuomotor behaviour task. We will then identify cortical and behavioural dysfuntion using SYNGAP haploinsufficiency (SY N GAP 1+/− ) mouse models. Further, we will dissect the strength and structure of ACC-V1 interactions by building a recurrent computational model, and follow their changes across learning. Finally, pharmacological treatments will be applied to SY N GAP 1+/− mouse models to rescue such dysfunction.