VCU Mathematics Colloquium 2-29-16

From a network of 10,000 neurons to a smartphone app with 125,000 users: linking scales in biological rhythms

Prof Daniel Forger
University of MichiganMonday, February 29
4:00- 4;50
Academic Learning Commons 2104

I will briefly describe mathematical models of neurons and chemical reactions within neurons that generate daily (circadian) timekeeping. In particular, we will focus on how GABA is used in the timekeeping network to send multiple simultaneous signals to coordinate timekeeping, track the seasons, send outputs to control physiology (particularly that relate to mood) and process inputs.

I will then explain how models can be used to find schedules that decrease the time needed to adjust to a new timezone by a factor of two or more. These optimal schedules have been implemented into a smartphone app which collects data from users and helps users avoid jet-lag.