Richard Mooney, Duke University Medical Center

Professor, Department of Neurobiology
Duke University Medical Center

Part of: Neuroscience Seminar Series
“From Song to Synapse”
Supported by the John A. ’72 and Raluca V. Allison Fund for Discourse in Neuroscience
Thursday, May 2, 2019 - 12:30pm
A32 PNI Lecture Hall
Hosted by: 
Michael Berry
Neuroscience Seminar Series
Vocalizations are an essential medium for communication in most vertebrates. Whereas many types of vocalizations are innate, humans and a few other animal groups culturally transmit their species-typical vocalizations. The presentation will cover fundamental discoveries concerning how the brain enables the learning and production of birdsong, a behavior with many parallels to human speech. Gain and loss of function methods, including genetic perturbations of neural activity in freely singing birds, have established the synaptic mechanisms that help to form an auditory memory of the tutor song and convert this memory into an imitative vocal pattern.