Ching, Sinopoli to study brain dynamics, learning

A multidisciplinary and multi-institutional team of researchers will probe the dynamic brain cell mechanisms on which artificial intelligence is based with a three-year $3.75 million Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative (MURI) grant from the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command’s Army Research Laboratory.


ShiNung Ching, associate professor of electrical and systems engineering at the McKelvey School of Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis, will lead the effort. Ching will collaborate with Bruno Sinopoli, the Das Family Distinguished Professor and chair of the Preston M. Green Department of Electrical & Systems Engineering, an expert on robust and resilient design of cyber-physical systems; Ilya Monosov, associate professor of neuroscience, whose lab studies the neuronal mechanisms that control exploration and learning; and Thomas Papouin, assistant professor of neuroscience, whose lab studies the role of glial cells in brain function, both at Washington University School of Medicine. They will also work with researchers at the University of California, Riverside.


The highly competitive MURI awards support research teams whose efforts intersect more than one traditional science and engineering discipline. It is the first MURI in which McKelvey Engineering is the lead institution in about 10 years.

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