IEEE Life Sciences Newsletter


In this first 2015 issue of the newsletter, we highlight ground-breaking research on the brain that will help us better understand its intricate functions and potentially offer new insights into neurological diseases. These efforts have been spurred by major investments in brain research by governments worldwide, and gatherings such as the IEEE EMBS BRAIN Grand Challenges Conference, held in Washington, D.C. in November 2014, serve to bring together leading researchers in the field to share new insights, novel approaches, and pioneering developments.

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Exploring New Frontiers of the Brain

Ed Boyden explores the frontier of brain mapping in this talk at Techonomy 2014.

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Stimulating the Brain

By Steve Furber

Following on the footsteps of global investments in brain research, including the United States’ BRAIN Initiative and the European Union’s Human Brain Project (HBP), major efforts are under way to decipher the brain’s complex functions through computational models. In the United Kingdom, research such as the SpiNNaker project—a novel computer architecture inspired by the working of the human brain—may hold the key to new understanding of the ways in which the brain works as well as new insights into neurological diseases. Steve Furber, ICL Professor of Computer Engineering in the School of Computer Science at the University of Manchester, UK, is involved with both SpiNNaker and the HBP.

Read more: Stimulating the Brain

Reverse Engineering the Brain

By Simon Schultz

Simon Schultz, Director of the Centre for Neurotechnology and Reader in Neurotechnology in the Department of Bioengineering, Imperial College London, is interested in "reverse engineering" the information processing architecture of the brain. His research investigations focus on the basic principles of information processing in cortical circuits through an engineering approach, which involves both doing experiments with mice as well as the theoretical work needed to understand the data from these experiments.

Read more: Reverse Engineering the Brain

About the Newsletter

The IEEE Life Sciences Newsletter is a new initiative to bring forth interesting articles and informative interviews within the exciting field of life sciences every month. Please subscribe to the newsletter to receive notification each month when new articles are published.


Michael R. NeumanMichael R. Neuman is Professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering, Michigan Technological University. His research interests are Biomedical sensors and instrumentation, Physiological measurements and perinatal medicine, Clinical applications of biomedical instrumentation, and Microfabrication technology.
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January 2015 Contributors

Steve FurberSteve Furber CBE FRS FREng is Imperial College London (ICL) Professor of Computer Engineering in the School of Computer Science at the University of Manchester, UK. There, he leads research into asynchronous and low-power systems and, more recently, neural systems engineering.
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Simon SchultzSimon Schultz is Director of the Centre for Neurotechnology at Imperial College London. After receiving degrees in Electrical & Computer Systems Engineering and Physics, he earned his PhD in the area of computational neuroscience under Prof. Edmund Rolls at Oxford.
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