Understanding the neuronal substrates of internal models of the world
How are predictions compared to sensory inputs to trigger prediction errors?
How are internal models updated, given persistent errors?
What features of odorants and their neuronal representations are relevant for olfactory perception?
Reformatting and decoding distinct features of sensory information
Long range feedforward-feedback interplay: Cross-talk between feedforward and feedback signals across different brain areas may enable key computations ranging from extracting fine sensory features in complex environments to generating predictions on incurring stimuli, and serving as substrates for planning and execution of motor actions. Despite overwhelming evidence for massive top-down projections, the specificity and logic of interplay between feedforward and feedback neural signals between early sensory processing areas and the cortex remains poorly understood. This is due both to a conceptual bias favoring the prevalence of feedforward hierarchical processing, as well as to technical limitations in assessing the effects of cortical feedback. We investigate the function of such long-range circuits in the mammalian olfactory system.