[Comp-neuro] Internship on Multi-scale and multi-modal data analysis and modeling of neural signals in epileptic patients

Maurizio De Pitta mdepitta at bcamath.org
Tue Feb 19 23:11:49 CET 2019

Dear colleagues,
please share with your students and anyone who be interested.

The Basque Center for Applied Mathematics (BCAM) and the BioCruces
Hospital in Bilbao (Biscay, Spain) are offering a 6-month internship
tailored to advanced bachelor students or Master students interested
in the fascinating theory of complex networks in relation with
multi-scale analysis of time series data from neural signals of
epileptic patients.

Candidates should apply here:  http://www.bcamath.org/en/research/internships

Interviews are currently open and will go on till fulfilment of the position.

The internship can be used by Spanish and Basque students to fulfil
their  mandatory training credits. However, international candidates
will also be very welcome. There is also the possibility to exploit
the internship experience later into a full PhD project.

Following are the details of the internship.

Multi-scale analysis of neuronal signals in epileptic patients

Brief description of the research topic.
About one epileptic patient out of four is diagnosed with intractable
(drug-resistant) epilepsy, presenting severe, life-impairing seizures
for which the only, currently available treatment option is surgical
removal of epileptogenetic neuronal circuits. The success of this
surgery however depends on our ability to exactly identify
epileptogenic circuits. This task is challenged by the emerging
hypothesis that epileptogenic circuits are distributed rather than
localised in a single brain spot. In turn, this distributed scenario
suggests that epileptic seizures present multi-scale spatial
organisation in conjunction with hierarchical temporal activation of
multiple neural circuits. In line with this hypothesis is the
observation that the spectrum of oscillatory neural electrical
activity during seizures recorded by electroencephalography (EEG)
presents multiple frequency components, ranging from milli- to kilo
hertz. It remains however unclear how to relate such temporal
structure with the underlying spatially-organised activation of
epileptogenic neural networks. The aim of this internship is to gain
familiarity with development of mathematical and modelling techniques
that could help the analysis of spatial and temporal correlations in
epileptic neural activity. The intern will work in collaboration with
Dr. Maurizio De Pittà (BCAM) to adapt current models of neuron-glial
networks to reproduce epileptic seizures, and with Dr. Paolo Bonifazi
(BioCruces) for the analysis of neural time series.

- Basic knowledge of graph theory and statistical data analysis, and
numerical integration
- Essential programming skills in MATLAB and/or Python
- Basic knowledge in neuroscience is a plus
- Ability to meet deadlines
- Strong interest to pursue research in complex network theory

Keywords: computational neuroscience, time-series analysis, network
theory, epilepsy, neuron-glia interactions.

Contact details:
Maurizio De Pitta', mdepitta at bcamath.org
Paolo Bonifazi, paolo.bonifazi at osakidetza.eus

Maurizio De Pitta'
Research Fellow
MCEN -- Group of Mathematical, Computational and Experimental Neuroscience
BCAM -- Basque Center of Applied Mathematics

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