Elephants and mosquitoes: Massive, high-performance neuroscience applications and miniature, low-power biomedical implants

Speaker

Christos Strydis, Erasmus Medical Center, The Netherlands -- 28-01-2016

Abstract

 The brain is without any doubt the most complex organ in the human body, with still many secrets to be unveiled.  Modern research efforts are directed as much towards charting the brain as towards restoring brain functionality. This talk addresses both goals by brushing upon a two main research fields we are currently working on in the Neuroscience Department of the Erasmus Medical Center: high-performance brain modeling (i.e. the elephants) and next-generation, implantable neuromodulators (i.e. the mosquitoes). The former theme deals with highly realistic brain models mapped onto FPGAs and other high-performance platforms. The overall objective is to create a complete computational model of the human brain which will help us to better understand its functionality and neurological diseases, and – later on – to intervene for restoring brain function in patients suffering from CNS diseases such as Calcium-Channelopathies, Fragile-X and Autism. The latter theme deals with next-generation, implantable neurostimulators aiming at precise and flexible, closed-loop brain modulation for addressing malignancies such as dementia, depression, tinnitus, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease. In this talk I will provide the necessary context and I will highlight the delicious engineering challenges posed by both themes. I will then brush over a few cutting-edge developments we have contributed in the field.

Bio

Christos Strydis studied Electronics & Computer Engineering at the Technical University of Crete, Greece, and in 2003 received his bachelor's diploma (honors). In 2005 he obtained his M.Sc. degree (honors) in Computer Engineering from the Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands, with a minor in Biomedical Engineering. In 2011 he obtained his Ph.D. degree in Computer Engineering from the Delft University of Technology.

Currently, he is an assistant professor with the Neurscience department of the Erasmus Medical Center, the Netherlands, and is also a chief engineer with Neurasmus BV, The Netherlands. He is the head of the computer-engineering lab in the department and leads the Erasmus Brain Project effort. Christos has acted as technical-program-committee member in various international conferences. He has also peer-reviewed for as well as published manuscripts in well-known international conferences and journals. He has delivered invited talks in various venues. He has also supervised multiple BSc, MSc and PhD students. He has authored and managed a number of successfully funded national- and EU-level research proposals. Christos teaches a number of bachelor- and master-level courses in the joint Nanobiology program of the Erasmus Medical Center and the Delft University of Technology. His interests revolve around the topics of high-performance computational-neuroscience applications, dependable computer architectures, low-power embedded systems  and biomedical microelectronic implants.

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