5th HBP Student Conference on Interdisciplinary Brain Research

1–4 February 2021 | Virtual Conference
 

Preliminary Scientific Programme - 5th HBP Student Conference 2.8 MB

 

 

 

The human brain is such a complex system that it can only be understood by combining knowledge and practices from multiple scientific fields. The 5th HBP Student Conference provides an open forum for the exchange of new ideas amongst early career researchers across various sciences relevant to the Human Brain Project (HBP). Attendees will be exposed to the data-driven brain research approach of the HBP and have the opportunity to test the EBRAINS platform thoroughly. The conference offers room for extensive scientific dialogue, both intra- and interdisciplinary, through a variety of discussion sessions, lectures and social events. It will take place virtually, organised and supported by the HBP Education Programme.

 

The conference will take place virtually over four days, with a versatile online schedule from 1 to 4 February 2021.
 


Participation information

Participation in the 5th HBP Student Conference is open to the entire student community and early career researchers, regardless of whether they are affiliated with the HBP or not. We particularly encourage young scientists to register and aim at an equal gender representation.

 

 

To register for the conference, an EBRAINS account is needed. Please create your account at https://ebrains.eu/register (free of charge) and register for the 5th HBP Student Conference (also free of charge).

Please check the FAQs for further instructions.

 

Registration deadline: 14 January 2021

Please note that registration for the conference is mandatory.

 

REGISTRATION


 

Registration deadline: 14 January 2021
 

 

Preliminary Scientific Programme

*The Programme is subject to change.

Workshop descriptions
 


11:00 – 11:30
 


Welcome
 

11:30 – 12:30


Keynote I: Integrating neuroscience data through personalised brain simulation in protected cloud environments to infer multi-scale mechanisms of brain function and dysfunction

Petra Ritter | Charité University Medicine Berlin

 


12:30 – 12:45
 


Break
 

12:45 – 14:15

Parallel workshops:

Workshop descriptions

 

Build on EBRAINS I
Tutor tbd

 

Ethics, Responsible Research & Innovation, and Dual Use
Inga Ulnicane | De Montfort University

 

What brains are we looking at? About the role of diversity in brain research
Karin Grasenick, Julia Trattnig | convelop

 

Deep learning with biological neural networks in Norse
Christian Pehle | Heidelberg University

 


14:15 – 15:15
 

Break


15:15 – 16:15
 

Student Session I


16:15 – 16:30
 

Break

16:30 – 17:30

Keynote II: Towards Biologically Realistic Models of Cortical Computation

Stefan Mihalas | Allen Institute for Brain Science /University of Washington


17:30 – 17:45
 

Break


17:45 – 19:15
 

Networking Session

 


11:00 – 12:00
 


Keynote III: The multilevel human brain atlas in EBRAINS -
Features, Use cases and Future Perspectives

Timo Dickscheid | Forschungszentrum Jülich
 


12:00 – 12:15
 

Break


12:15 – 13:45
 


Parallel workshops:

Workshop descriptions

 

Build on EBRAINS II
Tutor tbd


Introduction to and applying for FENIX-ICEI compute resources - Part 1
Alex Upton | ETH Zürich
Anne Nahm | Forschungszentrum Jülich
Alice Geminiani | University of Pavia


The Virtual Brain Cloud
Petra Ritter | Charité University Medicine Berlin


Innovation - stakeholders to consider
Mario Fallast | Technical University Graz


 


13:45 – 14:45
 

Break


14:45 – 15:45
 


How I became a group leader in Neuroscience.
Ask me anything!

Katrin Amunts | Forschungszentrum Jülich
Andrew Davison | CNRS
Steve Furber | The University of Manchester
Abigail Morrison | Forschungszentrum Jülich


15:45 – 16:00
 

Break


16:00 – 17:00
 

Student Session II


17:00 – 17:15
 

Break


17:15 – 18:45
 

Poster Session I

 


11:00 – 12:00
 


Keynote IV: Neuromorphic Algorithms and Hardware for Real-Time Real-World Robots
Jörg Conradt | KTH Royal Institute of Technology


12:00 – 12:15
 


Break
 


12:15 – 13:45
 


Parallel workshops:

Workshop descriptions


Build on EBRAINS III
Tutor tbd

 

Introduction to and applying for FENIX-ICEI compute resources - Part 2
Alice Geminiani | University of Pavia
Anne Nahm | Forschungszentrum Jülich
Alex Upton | ETH Zürich


A primer using Neo and Elephant to analyse electrophysiology data

Michael Denker | Forschungszentrum Jülich


 


13:45 – 14:45
 


Break
 


14:45 – 15:45
 


Student Session III
 


15:45 – 16:00
 


Break
 


16:00 – 17:00
 


Keynote V: Title tbd
Mike Davies | Intel Corporation

 


17:00 – 17:15
 


Break
 


17:15 – 18:45
 


Networking Session
 

 


11:00 – 12:00
 


Keynote VI: Title tbd
Mavi Sánchez-Vives | August Pi i Sunyer Biomedical Research Institute

 


12:00 – 12:15
 


Break
 


12:15 – 13:45
 

 

Parallel workshops:

Workshop descriptions


Build on EBRAINS IV
Tutor tbd


Data sharing on EBRAINS
Camilla Blixhavn, Ingrid Reiten, Ulrike Schlegel | University of Oslo

 

Full steam ahead! How to successfully navigate your career journey
Karin Grasenick, Julia Trattnig | convelop


 


13:45 – 14:45
 


Break
 


14:45 – 15:45
 


Student Session IV
 


15:45 – 16:00
 


Break
 


16:00 – 17:30
 


Poster Session II
 


17:30 – 18:00
 


Awards & Closing Remarks
 

 

 

Confirmed Speakers

Prof. Katrin Amunts did a postdoctoral fellowship at the C. & O. Vogt Institute of Brain Research at Duesseldorf University, Germany. In 1999, she set up a new research unit for Brain Mapping at the Research Center Juelich, Germany. In 2004, she became professor for Structural-Functional Brain Mapping, and in 2008 a full professor at the Department of Psychiatry, Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics at the RWTH Aachen University as well as director of the Institute of Neuroscience and Medicine (INM-1) at the Research Center Juelich. Since 2013, she is a full professor for Brain Research, director of the C. and O. Vogt Institute of Brain Research, Heinrich-Heine University Duesseldorf and director of the Institute of Neuroscience and Medicine (INM-1), Research Center Juelich. Katrin Amunts is the programme speaker of the programme Decoding the Human Brain of the Helmholtz Association, Germany. Since 2017 Katrin Amunts is co-speaker of the graduate school Max-Planck School of Cognition and since 2018 she is a member of the International Advisory Council Healthy Brains for Healthy Lives, Canada.

Since 2016, she is the Scientific Research Director and Chair of the Science and Infrastructure Board (SIB) European Flagship, The Human Brain Project (HBP).

In order to better understand the organizational principles of the human brain, she and her team aim to integrate cyto-, receptorarchitectonic, genetic and functional as well as PLI-based maps into a multimodal atlas, which contributes to EBRAINS, the research infrastructure of the HBP. Central to her approach are the development and application of methods of high-performance computing to generate ultra-high resolution human brain models such as the BigBrain, and the Juelich-Brain, a cytoarchitectonic atlas reflecting variations in brain structure.

 

Session Title: Ask Me Anything!

Have you ever wondered how successful researchers built their careers? Or what it really takes to stay in academia? In this session, we invite you to an open conversation with four world-leading researchers who share what brought them to where they are now: experiences, opinions, doubts, and perhaps a few pieces of advice. In short, everything around their work. After a brief introduction from the panelists they will engage in an active dialogue with the audience. In short, this is a unique opportunity to interact with world-class researchers - and ask them anything!

Jörg Conradt is Associate Professor at Computational Science and Technology, KTH, Stockholm. His research group explores computational principles behind how brains turn perception into behavior. The research investigates theory, models, and implementations of distributed neuronal information processing, to (a) discover key principles by which large networks of neurons operate and to (b) implement those in engineered systems to enhance their real-world and real-time performance. Before joining KTH, he was Junior Professor at TU Munich’s EEIT department. He holds an M.S. degree in Computer Science/Robotics from the University of Southern California, a Diploma in Computer Engineering from TU Berlin, and a Ph.D. in Physics/Neuroscience from ETH Zurich.

 

Keynote Title: Neuromorphic Algorithms and Hardware for Real-Time Real-World Robots

Spiking Neuronal Networks (SNN) offer a powerful promise to control intricate future robotic systems, such as neuro-prosthetic devices directly coupled to brain-recordings. Such SNNs need to be executed on reasonable power budgets in real-time for any real-world robotic application. The more challenging and complex sensory inputs and control algorithms become, the more troublesome is their execution. Neuromorphic hardware, such as Manchester’s / Dresden’s SpiNNaker 1+2, IBM’s TrueNorth, or Intel’s Loihi architectures, offer efficient execution of SNNs, but provide various challenges and limitations in software, interfacing, and up-scaling. This talk will present SNNs to interpret sensory input, and to provide control signals for robotic actuators. Furthermore, it will show several available neuromorphic computing platforms, and present benefits of connecting such to real-time real-world robot scenarios.

Timo Dickscheid is heading the "Big Data Analytics" group at the Institute of Neuroscience and Medicine (INM-1), Forschungszentrum Jülich, Germany. He graduated in Computer Science at the University of Koblenz in 2006, and earned his PhD in Computer Vision and Photogrammetry at the University of Bonn in 2011 under the supervision of Prof. Wolfgang Förstner. In 2010, he joined Forschungszentrum Jülich as a post-doc in the lab of Katrin Amunts to work on medical image registration and segmentation for histological brain sections. After accepting a position as the head of Information Technology at the German Federal Institute of Hydrology in Koblenz in 2012, Timo returned to Jülich in 2014. His research group focuses on biomedical image analysis and neuroinformatics methods for building high-resolution 3D models of the human brain, and constitutes a local pillar of the national artificial intelligence research network “Helmholtz AI”. In the Human Brain Project (HBP), Timo leads the EBRAINS atlas service category (SC2), which includes the development of brain reference atlases and the corresponding software interfaces for exploration, data integration and data analysis.

 

Keynote Title: The multilevel human brain atlas in EBRAINS – Features, Use cases and Future Perspectives

The EBRAINS multilevel human brain atlas integrates maps that capture different facets of human brain organisation, in a common framework. It is defined across multiple reference spaces, zooming in from the millimeter scale in the MNI space to the micrometer level of the BigBrain. The atlas currently links cytoarchitectonic areas with ultra-high resolution BigBrain data, fiber bundles from MRI tractography, maps of functional modules, and a whole range of multimodal data features associated to various brain regions. The range and scope of available maps and features is constantly increasing. As the amount of data constituting the human atlas exceeds the disk capacity of most computers, it is designed as an online framework that you can access in a number of ways. The main entry point is our interactive 3D viewer, which allows you to explore the different facets of the atlas in 3D and to select specific data features for download. Programmatic interfaces, including a Python library, HTTP API and command line client, will become available soon.

 

In this lecture, I will talk about the development of key parts of this atlas: Maps and 3D models of the human brain, derived from microscopic resolution of histology using state of the art machine learning and “big data” technologies. I will walk you through the main features of the different interfaces of the EBRAINS atlas, introducing exemplary scientific use cases. Finally, I will provide an overview of the latest developments of the EBRAINS human brain atlas, which will be released in the near future.

Prof. Steve Furber CBE FRS FREng is ICL Professor of Computer Engineering in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Manchester, UK. After completing a BA in mathematics and a PhD in aerodynamics at the University of Cambridge, UK, he spent the 1980s at Acorn Computers, where he was a principal designer of the BBC Microcomputer and the ARM 32-bit RISC microprocessor. Over 180 billion variants of the ARM processor have since been manufactured, powering much of the world's mobile and embedded computing. He moved to the ICL Chair at Manchester in 1990 where he leads research into asynchronous and low-power systems and, more recently, neural systems engineering, where the SpiNNaker project has delivered a computer incorporating a million ARM processors optimised for brain modelling applications.


Session Title: Ask Me Anything!

Have you ever wondered how successful researchers built their careers? Or what it really takes to stay in academia? In this session, we invite you to an open conversation with four world-leading researchers who share what brought them to where they are now: experiences, opinions, doubts, and perhaps a few pieces of advice. In short, everything around their work. After a brief introduction from the panelists they will engage in an active dialogue with the audience. In short, this is a unique opportunity to interact with world-class researchers - and ask them anything!

Stefan Mihalas joined the Allen Institute in 2011 from Johns Hopkins University, where he was a postdoctoral fellow in neuroscience and subsequently an associate research scientist. As a computational neuroscientist, Mihalas has worked on models of both molecular and systems neuroscience including nervous system development, synaptic plasticity, minimalistic spiking neuron models, self-organized criticality, visual attention and figure ground segregation. His current research interests are aimed at building models to elucidate how large networks of interacting neurons produce cognitive behaviors. At the Allen Institute, Mihalas integrates anatomical and physiological data to generate models of computation in the mouse visual system. Mihalas received his Diploma in physics and M.S. in mathematics from West University of Timisoara in Romania. He received his Ph.D. in physics from the California Institute of Technology.


Keynote Title: Towards Biologically Realistic Models of Cortical Computation

The capacity to control behavior is the fundamental characteristic of the brain. It is driven by computations implemented by biological neural networks. However, we still lack a clear understanding on what computations are implemented by parts of the nervous systems, how much of those computations is innate and how much is learned, how they are learned, and how they are put together to generate behavior.  

Importantly, these computations need to be implemented by biological neural networks, which have significant differences from artificial neural networks. Salient differences include the incredible diversity in cellular and synaptic dynamics observed in the biological systems, and the large variation of the in-vivo activity resulting from the same stimuli. There is currently still a huge gap between biologically realistic models which focus on reproducing activity, and models of computations which abstract away biological realism.

I will present some small steps in bridging this gap: how it is possible for the biological system to make use of multiple long term synaptic dynamics to implement approximate evidence integration, make use of multiple short term synaptic dynamics to faster learn dynamical tasks, and make use of trial-by-trail variability to learn invariances the system needs to generalize over. However, since this is a student conference, I plan to spend a large fraction of time discussing open questions which still prevent us from constructing biologically realistic models of computation. 

Prof. Abigail Morrison is the group leader of “Computation in Neural Circuits” at INM-6/IAS-6, Forschungszentrum Jülich (Germany), the scientific lead of the “Simulation Laboratory Neuroscience” at the Jülich Supercomputing Centre and a professor of computer science at the RWTH Aachen, Germany. She holds a master’s degree in artificial intelligence and received her PhD in computational neuroscience in 2006 from the University of Freiburg, Germany.

Between 2006 and 2009 she was a scientific researcher at the RIKEN Brain Science Institute in Wako-Shi, Japan; she subsequently held professorships at the University of Freiburg, Germany (2009-2012, Biology) and the Ruhr University Bochum, Germany (2012-2020, Psychology). Her research interests include learning, adaptation and self-organization in spiking neural networks, dynamics and computation in neurodegenerative diseases, and high-performance simulation technology.


Session Title: Ask Me Anything!

Have you ever wondered how successful researchers built their careers? Or what it really takes to stay in academia? In this session, we invite you to an open conversation with four world-leading researchers who share what brought them to where they are now: experiences, opinions, doubts, and perhaps a few pieces of advice. In short, everything around their work. After a brief introduction from the panelists they will engage in an active dialogue with the audience. In short, this is a unique opportunity to interact with world-class researchers - and ask them anything!

Petra Ritter heads the Brain Simulation Section at the Dept. of Neurology, Charité and Berlin Institute of Health. She is a full professor for Brain Simulation. Her research focus is on integrating neuroimaging and computational neuroscience to discover mechanisms of brain function and dysfunction. She has led local (Charité & BIH Virtual Research Environment), national (Bernstein Focus), European (VirtualBrainCloud; Co-design Project The Virtual Brain in the EU Flagship HBP SGA2) and international neuroiformatics consortia (co-lead The Virtual Brain platform with >30k software downloads), is a participant in the national research data infrastructure initiative (NFDI) NFDI4Health and a co-speaker in NFDI-Neuro and a member of the European Open Science Cloud Architecture working group. She holds an ERC Consolidator grant and is engaged in several large-scale software projects. In the €15Mill funded EU project Virtual Brain Cloud and its local partnering project Virtual Research Environment, Ritter and collaborators develop a reference architecture for cross-institutional managing and processing of radiologic imaging and associated data in compliance with GDPR. Ritter’s Brain Simulation Section is GOLD member of the International Neuroinformatics Coordination Facility (INCF). 

Petra Ritter studied medicine at the Charité University Medicine Berlin. She spent a large part of her clinical traineeships and practical year abroad: at the universities UCLA and UCSD in Los Angeles and San Diego, the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York and the Harvard Medical School in Boston.   In 2002, she received her license to practise medicine. In 2004, she completed her doctoral thesis at the Charité and in 2010 she received habilitation in Experimental Neurology.  After being Max Planck Minerva research group leader from 2011 to 2015, she assumed the lifetime position of BIH Johanna Quandt Professor for Brain Simulation at Berlin Institute of Health (BIH) and Charité Universitätsmedizin Berlin, one of Europe’s largest university hospitals.  Since 2017, she is Director of the Brain Simulation Section at Charité Universitätsmedizin Berlin.


Keynote Title: Integrating neuroscience data through personalised brain simulation in protected cloud environments to infer multi-scale mechanisms of brain function and dysfunction

The challenge in studying the brain as a complex adaptive system is that complexity arises from the interactions of structure and function at different spatiotemporal scales. Modern neuroimaging can provide exquisite measures of structure and function separately but misses the fact that the brain complexity emerges from the intersection of the two. Here is where computational modelling of brain networks can help. Models that simulate different combinations of subordinate features of behaviour of a complex system that often can only be measured invasively (e.g. local population dynamics and long-range interactions) identify the combination of features that most likely give rise to emergent behaviour that often is observable noninvasively (e.g. EEG, MEG, fMRI) - and importantly those that are less likely. We can exploit the power of large-scale network models to integrate disparate neuroimaging data sources and evaluate the potential underlying biophysical network mechanisms. This approach is now feasible because of the developments in a whole-brain simulation platform, TheVirtualBrain (TVB). TVB integrates empirical neuroimaging data from different modalities to construct biologically plausible computational models of brain network dynamics. TVB is a generative model wherein biophysical parameters for the level of cell population activity and anatomical connectivity are optimized/fitted so that they generate an individual’s observed data in humans, macaques or rodents. The inferences about brain dynamics, complexity, and the relation to cognition are thus made at the level of the biophysical features (e.g., balance of excitation and inhibition in a cell population) that generated the observed data, rather than particular features of the data (e.g. FC). Through extended simulation, the TVB modeling platform allows for a complete exploration of dynamics that are consistent with a particular empirically-derived neural architecture. This exploration can span the dynamics that have been observed empirically and those that are not observed but are plausible potentials. This potentiality is directly related to complexity, in that complex systems will engender more options in the production of similar behavior, which also imparts more resilience. Potential configurations, or hidden repertoires, may also underlie broader concepts of “cognitive reserve”, which has been used to describe the ability of some persons to maintain high levels of cognitive function in aging and also in the face of damage or disease.

Mavi Sanchez-Vives, MD PhD, is ICREA Research Professor and leader of Systems Neuroscience at the Institute of Biomedical Research August Pi Sunyer in Barcelona, Spain. She is also co-Director of the EVENT Lab (Experimental Virtual Environments in Neurosciences and Technology) at the University of Barcelona and one of the founders of Virtual Bodyworks Inc. She is interested in the cellular and network mechanisms for the generation of spontaneous brain emergent activity in physiological and pathological conditions, neurotechnology and brain interfacing. She is also interested in brain-related applications of virtual reality, particularly in relation to body representation.

 

Abstract Title: TBD

Abstract will follow soon. 

PROGRAMME COMMITTEE

Chairs:
Alice Geminiani | University of Pavia
Ingrid Reiten | University of Oslo

Committee:
Petruţ Bogdan | The University of Manchester 
Sandra Díaz | Forschungszentrum Jülich
Jens Egholm Pedersen | Royal Institute of Technology
Carmen Lupascu | Italian National Research Council
Alper Yegenoglu | Forschungszentrum Jülich

 

ORGANISER

HBP Education Programme | Medical University Innsbruck
 

CONTACT

education@humanbrainproject.eu

 

FAQs & all you need to know

Registration is mandatory and is open until 14 January 2021.
Attendance is open to anyone and free of charge.
 

A: I already have an EBRAINS account.

  1. Click on the “Register” Button
     
  2. Log in to your EBRAINS account
     
  3. Enter your availabilities and accept the GDPR Statement.
     
  4. Click on “Please provide additional info by filling out this form (person and meeting related questions)” and enter the requested details.
     
  5. Once you have completed all fields and clicked on “Update”, you will receive a registration confirmation via e-mail. (Please note that you will receive a confirmation e-mail only for the first time you have entered all details. In case you update your registration details, no additional e-mail will be sent).

 

B: I do not yet have an EBRAINS account.

  1. Please go to https://ebrains.eu/register and create your account free of charge. As the EBRAINS Access Policy requires that users identify themselves by means of an institutional email address, please make sure to register with your institutional e-mail address.
     
    • All new users with a personal institutional e-mail address from a pre-identified institution will be provided an expedited registration process.
       
    • If your institution is not yet on the list of pre-identified institutions, please contact the EBRAINS support team from your institutional e-mail address and it will be added promptly.
       
    • If you cannot register with an institutional e-mail address or experience any other problems, please contact us at education@humanbrainproject.eu.
       
  2. Once you have received your EBRAINS account please follow the steps from option A.

The conference starts on Monday 1 February and lasts until Thursday 4 February 2021. It will be a virtual conference and the programme will comprise keynote lectures, student sessions, poster sessions as well as social events.

A more detailed schedule will be published here on this webpage during autumn 2020.

Please note that the abstract submission is already closed. If you have submitted your abstract and are now preparing the final version, please make sure to align with the guidelines below.

 

Authorship

Please accurately include all co-authors and their affiliations. If in doubt whether a person’s contributions should or should not be considered as authorship, please refer to http://www.icmje.org/icmje-recommendations.pdf.


Abstracts

Abstracts must be in a Word document format. The abstract word and character limits are as follows:

  • Title: 500 characters
  • Text: 1,000 words
  • Number of Figures: 2
  • No Supplementary Material


Given the nature of an interdisciplinary conference, formatting of abstracts organised according to the IMRaD format [Introduction/Motivation, Methods, Results and Discussion], with several sentences addressing each of these elements, is highly recommended. Please find a template for your convenience.

References should be included at the end of the abstract. Please note that the word count includes captions but not references. It is allowed to add acknowledgements to the abstract.

To make this virtual conference an interactive experience, it is important that you have access to a stable internet connection, good audio (with microphone) and ideally (not mandatory) a webcam for video communication.

If you have any questions about the abstract submission or the conference, please contact us at education@humanbrainproject.eu.