My lab studies how circuitry in the brain gives rise to complex behaviors, one of nature’s great mysteries. We study how the auditory cortex processes sound, and how this is interrupted in autism. We also seek to obtain a wiring diagram of the mouse brain at the resolution of individual neurons. Our unusual approach exploits cheap and rapid “next-gen” gene sequencing technology.
Anthony Zador and colleagues study how brain circuitry gives rise to complex behavior. Work in the lab is focused on two main areas. First, they ask how the cortex processes sound, how that processing is modulated by attention, and how it is disrupted in neuropsychiatric disorders such as autism. Recently, the lab found that when a rat makes a decision about a sound, the information needed to make the decision is passed to a particular subset of neurons in the auditory cortex whose axons project to a structure called the striatum. In the second major line of work in the Zador lab, they are developing new methods for determining the complete wiring instructions of the mouse brain at single-neuron resolution, which they term the “Connectome.” In contrast to previous methods, which make use of microscopy, these methods exploit high-throughput DNA sequencing. Because the costs of DNA sequencing are plummeting so rapidly, these methods have the potential to yield the complete wiring diagram of an entire brain for just thousands of dollars.
Diagramming the brain with colorful connections
May 10, 2021
CSHL scientists developed a new tool that identifies brain cell types and traces their connections.
CSHL Association holds its annual meeting
January 29, 2021
The Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Association welcomes four new directors and thanks three retiring ones.
NIH BRAIN Initiative invests $9.7 million in CSHL scientists
December 29, 2020
CSHL scientists received grants to broaden our knowledge of the human brain and how to treat neurological disorders.
NeuroAI program connects AI experts with neuroscientists
November 2, 2020
The CSHL NeuroAI program is training researchers to be fluent in neuroscience and AI to expedite the development of next-generation AI.
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory’s class of 2020
August 7, 2020
Meet the seven graduates of the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory School of Biological Sciences. Congratulations to all.
How to map brain connections using DNA barcodes
July 14, 2020
A new technique labels brain cells with short snippets of DNA to trace many neuronal connections at a time.
BARseq builds a better brain map
October 17, 2019
Created by CSHL neuroscientists, BARseq is capable of mapping connections within a brain at single-neuron resolution while tracing their gene expression.
Are smart robots a threat?
August 23, 2019
In a Q&A, Neuroscientist Anthony Zador explains how neuroscience can inform machine learning, and why he’s not worried about a robot apocalypse.
Understanding the animal brain could help robots wash your dishes
August 21, 2019
The field of machine learning still has a lot it can glean from neuroscience, especially in how evolution shapes an animal brain.
Watson School alumni spotlights
May 19, 2019
This year, Watson School celebrates the 20th anniversary of its first entering class and looks back at some notable alumni from over the years.