Rodolfo Llinás’s fearless approach to neurophysiology has redefined our thinking about individual neurons and how they create movement and consciousness.

Some Nerve

“My interest in science came from basic curiosity,” says Rodolfo Llinás of the New York University School of Medicine. “My interest in the nervous system came from my grandfather.” As a precocious preschooler, Llinás lived with his paterfamilias, a psychiatrist who ran his practice from home. There, the young boy encountered individuals with a cavalcade of psychiatric and neurological conditions, including one patient who experienced an epileptic seizure in the waiting room.

“I remember being amazed,” says Llinás, who asked his grandfather why the man would behave that way. “‘He didn’t want to do it. He couldn’t help it. His brain did it,’” his grandfather explained. For Llinás, the idea that the brain had a mind of its own was eye opening. “And the more I talked to the old man about these things,” he says, “the more I came to see that everything we do, everything we understand, everything we are, is focused on the brain.”

Llinás has kept his focus on the brain ever since. In addition to mapping out the detailed biophysics of neural activity in the squid giant synapse, Llinás has painstakingly catalogued the distinctive electrical properties of individual nerve cells in the central nervous system. His decades of labor have revealed that certain neurons can generate oscillating currents, an activity that helps to coordinate movement and could even give rise to consciousness.

“He has a real passion for understanding how the brain works and he’s been fearless in adopting whatever techniques will allow him to make progress,” says Terry Sejnowski. “Rodolfo is not only a leader in the field, his work is foundational and inspirational.”

“Rodolfo is one of the most revered, distinguished neurophysiologists in the field today,” says Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator Terry Sejnowski of the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla. “He has a real passion for understanding how the brain works and he’s been fearless in adopting whatever techniques will allow him to make progress. Rodolfo is not only a leader in the field, his work is foundational and inspirational.”

“We’re now in a golden age of cellular neuroscience,” says former postdoc Brian MacVicar of the University of British Columbia. “And its groundwork was built on Rodolfo’s work.” Read complete Article here below

Con gran éxito se celebró el XXX Congreso Médico USCMA “Bicentenario de la Independencia”

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