Brain-stimulation techniques that modulate brain activity in a targeted way are growing in their clinical relevance, for example, with transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) being an approved treatment for depression. However, despite its ubiquity in research and clinical contexts, we do not yet know how it works. We have recently shown how a mathematical model that describes interactions between neural populations in the cortex can reproduce the complex brain responses to stimulation, opening up an exciting new research avenue that uses quantitative analytical methods to guide groundbreaking new clinical applications.
This project will develop a mathematical (neural field) model of how cortical circuits respond to brain stimulation. Methods developed in this project will be used to understand the physiology of brain stimulation, and to guide the development of individualised brain-stimulation protocols. Outcomes from this project will inform the development of the next generation of personalised TMS treatments. Students will collaborate with Dr Nigel Rogasch (University of Adelaide) to develop new mathematical models to explain their cutting edge TMS datasets. Travel opportunities are available.
Excellent facilities are available to carry out all aspects of the work, including access to computing resources and large collections of TMS data. The student should have a strong interest in mathematical modeling (with a quantitative background in e.g., physics, mathematics, statistics, engineering, or computer science) and enjoy working in an interdisciplinary team. Top-up funding is available for the highest quality of applicants, with additional funding available to support travel to present research results at national and international conferences and to visit collaborators (including in Adelaide). Additional Supervisor: Dr Nigel Rogasch, University of Adelaide.
The opportunity ID for this research opportunity is 2855