Dr Paul Chadderton

Lab Overview

The brain is composed of billions of neurons intricately connected within small circuits.  Our goal is to understand how circuits in the cerebellum and related structures combine information from the outside world – sensations - with internally generated signals - thoughts and intentions - to appropriately guide behaviour. 

Research Questions

Our aim is to reveal the cellular and circuit mechanisms involved in motor control and learning in the cerebellum.

Principles governing movement control within cerebellar cortex. The organisation of movement signals within cerebellum is poorly understood. In particular, much is unknown about the roles of specific neuronal classes and the topographical arrangement of movement signals in cerebellar cortex. This information is essential to understand the role of this structure in health and disease.

Functional characteristics of inputs and outputs to cerebellum. Understanding cerebellar processing requires functional characterisation of inputs and outputs. We study the contribution of different inputs to cerebellar activity and in parallel measure cerebellar output to target structures.

Mechanisms of real-time motor learning. We study cerebellar neurons during behavioural perturbations to induce motor learning. Such measurements reveal learning mechanisms in the cerebellum across short and long timescales.

Techniques

We use advanced techniques encompassing in vivo electrophysiology, imaging and molecular biology:

  • Two-photon population imaging
  • Blind and two-photon targeted in vivo patch clamp recording
  • High-density extracellular electrophysiology
  • Opto- and pharmacogenetic perturbation of brain circuitry

Impact

Our research is geared towards revealing the underlying mechanisms of brain function, the discovery of which will inspire new technologies and therapies for brain dysfunction: one day we hope to understand brains sufficiently well to build or repair them.

Selected Publications

View complete publications list in the University of Bristol publications system.

Funding

  • (2018-2023) Wellcome Trust Investigator Award: The role of cerebellar circuity in movement control and real-time motor learning. £1.5M
  • (2016-2019) BBSRC: Relating changes in synaptic function to cognitive decline during normal healthy ageing £543k (with Prof. Stephen Brickley, Imperial College London).

Teaching

  • Neuroscience BSc:
  • Techniques in Neuroscience
  • Brain and Behaviour
  • Personal Tutor

Citizenship

  • Wellcome Trust Basic Science Interview Committee; Member (2018-)
  • National Consortium of the 3Rs Working Group on Rodent Behaviour; Member (2018-)
Dr Paul Chadderton

Group

  • Dr Elisabeth Meyer
  • Dr Marie Tolkiehn
  • Ms Tunvez Boulic
  • Mr Simon Bright
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