August 29, 2014
3 pm • Ansari Business Bldg 106
Charlie Chubb (UC Irvine)
Cephalopods (squid, octopus and cuttlefish) have exceptional neurophysiologically controlled skin that can rapid change color, enabling them to achieve dynamic crypsis in a wide range of habitats. Chubb shows the range of camouflage patterns that cuttlefish (Sepia Officinalis) produces and discusses some of the remarkably subtle strategies these patterns use to elude detection. The animals' patterning responses are controlled by the visual input they receive which are sensitive to the visual granularity of the stimulus substrate relative to their own body size.
A deep mystery remains unresolved: cuttlefish have skin that enables them to produce four dimensions of chromatic variation which they use to achieve masterful matches to the colors of substrates in their natural environment. However, cuttlefish have only a single retinal photopigment; in other words, they are colorblind.
October 23, 2014
7 pm• Davidson Math & Science Rm 110
Karl Deisseroth develops optical methods for high-resolution investigation of intact biological systems. His group has pioneered optogenetics, a technology that uses light to control millisecond-precision activity patterns in defined cell types in the brains of freely moving mammals, and CLARITY, a chemical engineering technology that enables high-resolution structural and molecular access to intact brains. A practicing psychiatrist, Deisseroth has also applied his technologies to study anxiety, depression, and social dysfunction.