Kenneth C. Catania
Department of Biological Sciences
VU Station B 351634
Nashville, TN 37235
2001 Searle Scholar
Touch Systems: Brain Organization and Sensory Processing
In my laboratory we study the organization and function of mammalian sensory systems. Our investigations take a wide range of approaches including studies of animal behavior, investigation of peripheral sensory receptor structure and function, and studies of the organization of the central nervous system with an emphasis on neocortex. Information from these different approaches is integrated to obtain a broad view of how animal behavior, sensory receptors, and central nervous systems have evolved to meet the challenges mammals face in diverse sensory worlds.
Recent studies include; 1) investigation of the sensory biology of the star-nosed mole and its relatives. 2) exploring the organization of sensory cortex in shrews (some the worlds smallest mammals) 3) comparative studies of members of the family Insectivora with the aim of understanding how various configurations of sensory cortex have evolved. 4) Preliminary investigation of the sensory biology of naked mole-rats.
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