Frank S. Werblin

AFFILIATIONS Professor of Neurobiology

Studies of retinal function

Our lab is trying to understand some important aspects of retinal function by looking at synaptic transmission between graded-potential cells, measuring patterns of excitatory and inhibitory activity amongst and between different populations of retinal cells using video imaging of calcium and voltage sensitive dyes, and looking at the correlated activity of retinal output using multielectrode recording arrays including up to 100 elements. We have recently made discoveries related to retinal neuromodulation, uncovering for the first time a dopamine modulation of inhibitory function. We have also discovered a spike-propagating cell that may play a role in directionally selective movement detection. All studies can be modelled using a newly-developed “neuromorphic retina” that can play back retinal function in real time and could form the basis for a retinal prosthetic.

Selected Publications

Roska, B. and Werblin, F.S.: Vertical Interactions Across Ten Parallel Stacked Representations in the Mammalian Retina. (2001) Nature 410: 583-587.Balya. D., Roska, B., Roska, T. and Werblin, F.S.: A CNN Model of a mammalian retina. (2001) Int. N. Circuit Theory and Applications (in press).B. Roska, E. Nemeth, L. Orzo, and F. S. Werblin: Three levels of lateral inhibition in the tiger salamander retina. (2000) J. Neurosci. 20, 1941-1951.Jacobs, A. and Werblin, F.S.: Spatiotemporal patterns at the retinal output. (1998). J. Neurophysiol. 80: 447-451.B. Roska, E. Nemeth, and F. S. Werblin: Response to change is facilitated by a 3-neuron disinhibitory pathway in the tiger salamander retina. (1998) J. Neurosci. May issue.