Our group aims to apply computational neuroscience to clinical neurology.
- We try to break cognition down into its elementary steps, asking what quantities the brain must be using.
- Then we try to understand how these steps map on to brain areas and chemicals.
- Next we study how neurological diseases, that affect specific brain chemistry and structures, can disrupt cognition
- Finally we ask whether we can modify cognition with medications.
Brain areas activated when people are motivated to exert an effort
Integrating study methods
We always begin with detailed, quantitative characterisation of a clinical problem. This is mainly done by analysing how patients perform carefully designed tasks.
By manipulating aspects of the task and measuring the effects, we can track the computational steps occurring for different components of cognition.
Once we have understood the behavioural changes caused by the condition, we can ask about which brain areas and brain chemicals are involved:
- We can test the effects of various drugs on behaviour, both in healthy volunteers and in patients with neurological illnesses.
- Various types of brain imaging (Functional MRI scans, Electroencephalography and Magnetoencephalography) can be used to map how regions of the brain contribute to those computational steps.
- We also study patients who have had damage to the brain — for example, after stroke — to understand how losing specific brain functions impacts on cognition.
2019. Motivation dynamically increases noise resistance by internal feedback during movement.  Neuropsychologia 123:19-29,
2019. Hippocampal volume across age: Nomograms derived from over 19,700 people in UK Biobank.  Neuroimage Clin 23:101904,
2019. Recall cues interfere with retrieval from visuospatial working memory.  Br J Psychol 110(2):288-305,
2019. Identification of Myocardial Disarray in Patients With Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy and Ventricular Arrhythmias.  J Am Coll Cardiol 73(20):2493-2502,
2019. Neural mechanisms of attending to items in working memory.  Neurosci Biobehav Rev 101:1-12,
2019. The psychopathology of NMDAR-antibody encephalitis in adults: a systematic review and phenotypic analysis of individual patient data.  Lancet Psychiatry 6(3):235-246,
2018. Ignoring versus updating in working memory reveal differential roles of attention and feature binding.  Cortex 107:50-63,
2017. Distinct Motivational Effects of Contingent and Noncontingent Rewards.  Psychol Sci 28(7):1016-1026,
2017. Dopamine Alters the Fidelity of Working Memory Representations according to Attentional Demands.  J Cogn Neurosci 29(4):728-738,
2017. Magnetic Oculomotor Prosthetics for Acquired Nystagmus.  Ophthalmology 124(10):1556-1564,
2017. Cortical areas needed for choosing actions based on desires.  Brain 140(6):1539-1542,
2017. Short-term memory for spatial, sequential and duration information.  Curr Opin Behav Sci 17:20-26,
2016. Human ventromedial prefrontal lesions alter incentivisation by reward.  Cortex 76:104-20,
2016. Working Memory for Sequences of Temporal Durations Reveals a Volatile Single-Item Store.  Front Psychol 7:1655,
2015. Gene therapy for GM1 gangliosidosis: challenges of translational medicine.  Ann Transl Med 3(Suppl 1):S28,
2015. Reduced pupillary reward sensitivity in Parkinson's disease.  NPJ Parkinsons Dis 1:15026,
2015. Reward Pays the Cost of Noise Reduction in Motor and Cognitive Control.  Curr Biol 25(13):1707-16,
2013. Attention as foraging for information and value.  Front Hum Neurosci 7:711,
2007. Does reward modulate actions or bias attention?  J Neurosci 27(41):10919-21,