The journal Brain has published a study led by Tamar Makin and Fiona van den Heiligenberg, with help from former lab PhD student Scott Macdonald, that examined hand-related areas in amputees, people born with only one hand, and two-handed control participants. In one-handers, activation in a visual region that responds to images of hands was activated when they viewed images of prostheses. Moreover, the visual activation level was correlated with how often they used the prosthesis, as was the strength of connections between visual and sensorimotor hand regions.
van den Heiligenberg, F. M. Z., Orlov, T., Macdonald, S. N., Duff, E. P., Henderson Slater, D., Beckmann, C., Johansen-Berg, H., Culham, J. C., & Makin, T. R. (2018 advance publication). Artificial limb representation in amputees. Brain.
Also, @CulhamARI_Lab is now on Twitter.
Western's CFREF BrainsCAN team has announced upcoming competition for the BrainsCAN Postdoctoral Fellowship Program (deadline May 1, 2018). The Brain and Mind Institute has announced the next competition for the International Graduate Student Scholarships in Cognitive Neuroscience (deadline: Feb. 28). Trainees with stellar track records should consider applying.
Congratulations to Carol Coricelli at SISSA, who had visited our lab in 2017, on successfully defending her PhD with distinction (cum laude).
We have moved into the Western Interdisciplinary Research Building. Jody's office is Room 4118. You can enter the building from the glass atrium (on the right as you face the building) and take the elevators.
Congratulations to our colleagues at Philipps University Marburg and Justis-Liebig University Giessen on the 4.5-million-euro renewal of their "Brain in Action" International Research Training Grant from the German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, DFG). The renewed funds, along with a Collaborative Research and Training Experience (CREATE) grant from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and support from Western, York and Queen's will enable an additional 4.5 years of CREATE and IRTG collaborative training exchanges between the German and Canadian universities.
- Freud, E., Culham, J. C., Plaut, D. C., & Behrmann, M. (2017). The large-scale organization of shape processing in the ventral and dorsal pathways. eLife, 6:e27576.
- Monaco, S., Gallivan, J. P., Figley, T. D., Singhal, A., & Culham, J. C. (2017). Recruitment of foveal retinotopic cortex during haptic exploration of shapes and actions in the dark. Journal of Neuroscience, 37 (48) 11572-11591.
Jody contributed to a feature on eLife's approach to peer review.
Congratulations to Dr. Scott Macdonald on the successful defence of his PhD thesis, Characterizing Tool-Selective Areas with Human Neuroimaging
New paper forthcoming
- Cavina-Pratesi, C., Connolly, J. D., Monaco, S., Figley, T. D., Milner, A. D., Schenk, T., & Culham, J. C. (2017) Human neuroimaging reveals the subcomponents of reaching and pointing actions. Cortex
Congratulations to Stephanie Schumacher, who was awarded the W. J. McCelland Award for the best Honours Thesis in Psychology at Western and a Canadian Psychological Association (CPA) "Certificate of Academic Excellence" for her honours thesis!
Research from Tamar Makin's lab at UCL/Oxford, in collaboration with Scott Macdonald and Jody Culham (Hahamy et al., 2017, Current Biology), has been featured in the media, including The Independent, The Daily Mail, The Sunday Times, Seeker, Technology Networks, and Science Daily.
Welcome to our new administrative assistant, Rosanna Turner, and to Carol Coricelli, a visiting scholar from the International School of Advanced Studies (SISSA) in Trieste, Italy.
New papers forthcoming:
- Vesia, M., Barnett-Cowan, M., Elahi, B, Neva, J., Davare, M., Staines, W., Culham, J., & Chen, R. (In press). Human dorsomedial parieto-motor circuit specifies grasp during the planning of goal-directed hand actions. Cortex, 92, 175-186.
New papers forthcoming:
- Freud, E. Macdonald, S. N., Chen, J., Quinlan, D. J., Goodale, M. A., & Culham, J. C. (2017). Getting a grip on reality: Grasping movements directed to real objects and images rely on dissociable neural representations. Cortex.
- Hahamy, A., Macdonald, S. N., van den Heiligenberg, F., Kieliba, P., Malach, R., Emir, U., Brugger, P., Johansen-Berg, H., Culham, J. C., & Makin, T. R. (2017). Representation of multiple body parts in missing hand territory of congenital one-handers. Current Biology, 27, 1350-1355.
New papers forthcoming:
- Chen, J., Snow, J. C., Culham, J. C., & Goodale, M. A. (2017). What role does ‘elongation’ play in ‘tool-specific’ activation and connectivity in the dorsal and ventral visual streams? Cerebral Cortex.
- van den Heiligenberg, F. M. Z., Yeung, N., Brugger, P., Culham, J. C. & Makin, T. R. (2017). Adaptable categorization of hands and tools in prosthesis users. Psychological Science, 28(3), 395-398.
- Jody has returned from sabbatical
- Western's BrainsCAN initiative has won a $66 million grant from the Canada First Research Excellence Fund!
- Many of us in the Culham Lab are remembering former lab postdoc (2004-2006), Cristiana Cavina Pratesi, who passed away on August 1, 2016. Cristiana was a talented and creative scientist who made many important discoveries. She was a doctoral student with Carlo Marzi in Verona, a postdoc with Mel Goodale and Jody Culham at Western, a postdoc with David Milner at Durham University and then a Lecturer and Senior Lecturer at Durham. In the Culham Lab, she discovered dissociations between object processing for grasping vs. perception (Cavina-Pratesi et al., 2007), identified a brain region, SPOC, that plays a role in arm transport (Cavina-Pratesi et al., 2010), contributed to a review of parietal lobe function (Culham, Cavina-Pratesi & Singhal, 2006), and was an active co-author on many other papers (for which in many cases, she played a key role in mentoring junior trainees). She was also a warm, funny, curious, generous lab member, colleague and friend. She will be greatly missed by all.
- Those who wish to remember Cristiana can visit her tribute site or make a donation in her memory.