FINAL PROJECT PROPOSAL: Magnus Opus and Exigence > Finding functionally distinct retinal ganglion cells in mice

Audience: This write-up is intended for presenting some of my findings to my PI, other lab members, and collaborators of our lab. This audience includes neuroscientists and computational biologists, specifically those working on how the visual system processes information. While the audience has a broad understanding of the visual system and a technical understanding of statistical modeling, they may not have a specific understanding of retinal structures.

Context: Retinal cells process their stimulus (light) and fire electrical signals which are sent to more complex regions of the brain. One distinct kind of retinal cells - called retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) - are in effect the first stage of visual processing in the visual system. It is well established that three categories of RGCs exist in mice, based on their function - on-cells respond only to ON temporal signals (transition from dark to light), off-cells respond only to OFF temporal signals (light to dark), and on-off-cells which respond to both. Recent research has found that there are numerous subcategories of on and off-cells, but these categorizations were performed on linear models.

Purpose: This document will show that unsupervised clustering of on/off-cell temporal filters of nonlinear models finds subcategories similar to those found by other researchers using linear models. This is an important result as it shows that the nonlinear models developed by our lab can find the same distinctions as the linear models - this indicates that both models are finding a similar set of solutions, but the nonlinear model finds solutions in a more general subspace.

Document type: A more informal write-up of my work in the lab
April 21, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterP Gupta
R, this can use some of the article review you worked on, right? Perhaps as part of the background. Check with your lab supervisors about the format but I think you will use some version of IMRAD. Depending on what they prefer, you could plan a set of related documents: IMRAD, SOP for some of the protocols you follow, your lab notes and data, some notes on the computational procedures (stats, algorithms, modeling) and finally, a slide set that you can present in person. Check with them. I am happy to help you meet the formats they prefer.

Glad that this class can support you in writing up your research.
April 23, 2017 | Registered CommenterMarybeth Shea