• What is the relationship between consciousness and brain activity? Within a larger context, this question is part of the classical 'mind-body' problem, and has been asked since antiquity. We have been trying to understand this relationship from a neuronal, reductionist point of view, focussing on vision and visual consciousness in monkeys, normal people and patients and on associative Pavlovian conditioning in people and mice. We seek to identify and characterize the neuronal correlates of consciousness (NCC) with experiments in normal human subjects (with fMRI, EEG and visual psychophysics), in patients whose electrical single neuronal activity we can monitor with chronic electrodes (in the laboratory of Prof. Itzhak Fried at UCLA) and in mice.
    • Prof. Christof Koch has worked extensively on these questions with the late Francis Crick, publishing two dozen papers and chapters with him. For a summary their framework, see their 2003 Nature Neuroscience article, as well as the book Question for Consciousness: A Neurobiological Approach, a book for a general audience that Prof. Koch wrote in 2004. You can find a detailed and very useful glossary of relevant terms for a science of consciousness here.

     


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