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Signal processing methods add to our understanding of neuronal functioning

The electrophysiological functioning of biological neuronal networks can be measured using microelectrode arrays. In his thesis, MSc (Tech) Fikret Emre Kapucu developed new methods and metrics for analysing neuronal behaviour based on measurements particularly developed for neuronal networks.

Neuronal functioning and the communication of neurons have been studied based on their electrophysiological signalling for decades. Microelectrode arrays provide a way to “listen” and collect information on the electrophysiological functioning and the “speech” of neurons and neuronal systems on different scales. This information is crucial to understand the causes of neurological disorders and diseases, to improve treatment methods and for the purposes of basic research and the development of computational neuronal models.

At present, there are several ways to analyse electrophysiological signalling and to interpret neuronal behaviour.

“However, there is more information in the measurements than we can currently analyse. We need to find a way to enhance our understanding of neuronal systems, particularly with the emerging new culturing paradigms,” Fikret Emre Kapucu explains.

“For example, stem cell-based neuronal networks seem promising as to treating many neurological diseases and injuries in the future. Consequently, a vast amount of data is being collected from networks developed from stem cell-based neurons. On the other hand, there is a big variability between the network behaviours in the data collected from different experiments and cell lines. Thus, we need novel and enhanced methods which are suitable for assessing such varying data,” Kapucu continues.

The newly developed methods and metrics improve analysis efficiency and open up new perspectives in research that applies microelectrode arrays. Kapucu’s study may enhance the outcomes obtained in the field of neuroscience and be beneficial for understanding neuronal functioning.

 

Public defence of a doctoral dissertation on Wednesday, 30 November 2016

MSc (Tech) Fikret Emre Kapucu’s doctoral dissertation in the field of computational neuroscience entitled ‘Methods to Enhance Information Extraction from Microelectrode Array Measurements of Neuronal Networks’ will be publicly examined at the Faculty of Computing and Electrical Engineering of Tampere University of Technology (TUT) in room S3 in Sähkötalo (Korkeakoulunkatu 3, Tampere) at 12 noon on Wednesday, 30 November 2016. The opponent will be Dr Michela Chiappalone (Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Italy). Professor Jari Hyttinen from TUT’s Department of Electronics and Communications Engineering will act as Chairman.

Fikret Emre Kapucu currently works at the Department of Pervasive Computing at TUT.

The dissertation is available online at: http://urn.fi/URN:ISBN:978-952-15-3862-9

Further information:

Fikret Emre Kapucu, tel. +358 40 849 00 23, emre.kapucu@tut.fi

 

News submitted by: Tiina Leivo
Keywords: education and studies, science and research, neuronal networks, microelectrode arrays