The major job description of the brain is to control all of the physiological systems. A very minor and unimportant addition throughout its evolution to this job description has been its involvement in the decision-making process. The neurobiological pathways leading to decision-making is the key to understand the pathogenesis of major neurological and psychiatric diseases while providing insights to novel diagnostic and therapeutic interventions. Among several neuroimaging technologies, optical imaging offers a non-invasive alternative to investigate thebrain dynamics during decision-making process. I plan on setting the stage with a description on theneurobiology of cognition and take the audience on a tour of my lab’s research over a decade. The talk will include our data collected via our custom made optical imager (ARGES Cerebro) from schizophrenics and ADHD patients as well as healty controls.
Dr Ata Akin received his Ph.D. on Biomedical Engineering from Drexel University in 1998, his MS on Biomedical Engineering and BS on Electronics and Telecommunication Engineering both from Istanbul Technical University in 1995 and 1993, respectively. He joined the School of Biomedical Engineering in Drexel University as a Research Assistant Professor in 1999 and worked there till 2002. He received grants from NIH-SBIR, ONR and DARPA on the use of functional near-infrared spectroscopy for noninvasive tissue perfusion monitoring. He joined the Institute of Biomedical Engineering faculty in 2002 as an Assistant professor, and co-founded the Biophotonics Laboratory. As an Associate Professor he established the Neuro-Optical Imaging Lab in 2008. He joined the Faculty of Engineering at Istanbul Bilgi University in 201 and served as the Dean of FENS until 2015. He is currently the Dean of faculty of Engineering and Department Head of Medical Engineering at Acıbadem University. Dr Akin’s research interests are in the fields of neuroimaging and systems biology. In the field of functional neuroimaging, he designs and develops medical instruments to monitor the brain and muscle oxygenation activity during health and disease. In the field of systems biology, he develops algorithms in extracting and classifying the signals and images obtained from the body, mathematical models of neurobiological systems, metabolic diseases, cancer biology and muscle metabolism.