Neurophysics and Neuroengineering Affinity Group

Mission and Goals:

The BRI joined with the Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science (SEAS) to create the NeuroEngineering Training (NET) Program. The NET Program is a joint endeavor of the Interdepartmental Ph.D. Program for Neuroscience and the Biomedical Engineering Ph.D. Program in SEAS, with the active involvement of scientists from JPL. This cooperative effort trains students to work at the interface between engineering and neuroscience. The program was initially supported by a grant from the National Science Foundation IGERT (Integrative Graduate Education and Training) Program; a training grant submission to NIH is currently being proposed.

The Neuroengineering Affinity Group will provide students and faculty the opportunity to meet and discuss research projects, form new collaborations, and invite research presentations from both UCLA faculty and outside speakers.

The Neuroengineering Affinity Group will promote the objectives of the NET Program:

  • To enable students with a background in biological science to develop and execute projects that make use of state-of-the-art technology, including microelectromechanical systems (MEMS), signal processing, and photonics;
  • To enable students with a background in engineering to develop and execute projects that address problems that have a neuroscientific base, including locomotion and pattern generation, central control of movement, and the processing of sensory information; and
  • To enable all trainees to develop the capacity for the multidisciplinary teamwork, in intellectually and socially diverse settings, that will be necessary for new scientific insights and dramatic technological progress in the 21st century.
  • NET Ph.D. students take a curriculum designed to encourage cross-fertilization of the two fields. Our goal is for neuroscientists and engineers to speak each others' language and move comfortably among the intellectual domains of the two fields.

Affinity Group Participants:

Name Department Interest Area Contacts and Web Address
Abeer Alwan Electrical Engineering, UCLA Signal processing, mathematical modeling of human speech production & perception mechanisms, and applications to speech processing algorithms and devices. 310-206-2231; 310-206-4304


Marvin Bergsneider Neurosurgery, UCLA Pathobiology of the metabolic responses (PET) to traumatic brain injury and computer modeling of the hemodynamics of intracranial pressure physiology. 310-206-4100


James Bisley

Neurobiology, UCLA

Neural mechanisms underlying visual perception, visual attention, and visual memory



H. Tad Blair

Psychology, UCLA

Neurophysiological and behavioral studies of learning, memory, and motivation



Susan Bookheimer NPI & H-

Brain Mapping, UCLA

Functional MRI of language and memory in normal volunteers and patients with Alzheimer's, brain tumors, and developmental language difficulties.


Jeffrey Bronstein Neurology, UCLA Molecular biology of glia and glial tumors; development of immunotherapy for glioma; clinical research in Parkinson’s disease. 310-794-2158


Dean Buonomano Neurobiology, UCLA Neural basis of temporal information processing; how neurons develop selective responses to temporal characteristics such as the order, duration and intervals of different stimulus features. 310-794-5009; 310-794-5012


Marie-Francoise Chesselet Neurology, UCLA Molecular mechanisms of dysfunction and neurodegeneration in the basal ganglia. 310-267-1781


Mark Cohen Neurology/Radiological Science/Psychiatry, UCLA Use of MRI to understand-structure function relationships in the human brain. Development of acquisition and analysis technologies; utilization of these tools with a particular focus on cognitive aspects of sensory perception & imagery 310-206-5437


Antonio DeSalles Neurosurgery, UCLA
Functional Neurosurgery: Clinical aspects of Parkinson's disease after pallidotomy and basic research in Parkinsonism MPTP model including cell transplantation and growth factor injections in basal ganglia; Radiosurgery: Clinical research on application of radiosurgery for brain tumors, epilepsy, and chronic pain, and basic research on effects of ionizing radiation to cerebral vasculature and neuronal firing. 310-794-1221


Joseph DiStefano Computer Science, UCLA Biocybernetics, bioengineering, modeling and simulation, modeling theory and methodology, artificial intelligence/knowledge based systems, dynamic systems optimization, estimation, identification, and control. 310-825-7482; 310-825-4033


Bruce Dobkin Neurology, UCLA Translation of work in motor control and learning from basic neuroscience to clinical rehabilitation. 310-206-6500


Bruce Dunn Material Science & Engineering, UCLA Electrical and optical properties of inorganic solids; organic/inorganic hybrid materials; encapsulation of enzymes and other proteins in sol-gel materials, biomedical and chemical sensors, solid electrolytes and ion transport. 310-825-1519


Reggie Edgerton Physiological Science; Neurobiology, UCLA Neuromuscular plasticity in response to altered function, growth factors and hormones. 310-825-1910


Jack Feldman Neurobiology, UCLA Systems neurobiology. 310-825-0954; 310-825-2123


Joaquin Fuster Psychiatry & Biobehavioral Science, UCLA Cortical physiology of perception and memory. 310-825-0247; 310-825-5528


Alan Garfinkel Physiological Science, UCLA Mathematical models of physiological systems, especially in cell and tissue electrophysiology. Data analysis using methods of nonlinear dynamics (“chaos theory”). 310-794-7214


Robert Greenberg Electrical Engineering, UCLA Electrical stimulation of the retina, especially modeling and electrophysiology with the goal of creating a retinal prosthesis for patients blind from outer retinal degenerations (such as retinitis pigmentosa.

661-775-3990 x3338-off campus


Warren Grundfest Biomedical Engineering, UCLA Development of excimer lasers for medical applications, minimally invasive surgery, angioscopic evaluation of intravascular disease processes, magnetic-guided interventional procedures, laser lithotrispsy, microendoscopy, spectroscopy. 310-794-5550


Chih-Ming Ho Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering, UCLA Micro tranducers, fluid dynamics and biomechanics. 310-825-9993; 310-825-2369


Larry Hoffman

Surgery/Division of Head & Neck Surgery, UCLA

Coding of dynamic sensory stimuli, principally by the vestibular sensory epithelia within the inner ear.



Jack Judy Electrical Engineering, UCLA Micromachining, MEMS, new technologies for the neural-electronic interface, and neural prosthetics. 310-206-1371; 310-206-1668


William Kaiser Electrical Engineering, UCLA Concentration on the development of a distributed network sensor technology, low power analog and digital electronics, and low power RF communication. 310-825-6465; 310-825-2647


Daniel Kamei

Bioengineering, UCLA

Molecular cell bioengineering



CJ Kim Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering, UCLA MEMS, especially the issues related to mechanical engineering, including design and fabrication of microstructures microactuators and systems, physics in microscale, and micromanufacturing. 310-825-0267


Michael Levine Psychiatry & Biobehavioral Sciences, UCLA Neurophysiology of basal ganglia. 310-825-7595


Jia-Ming Liu Electrical Engineering, UCLA The areas of nonlinear optics, ultrafast lasers, nonlinear and dynamic processes in materials and devices, and numerical simulations of photonic devices and systems. 310-206-2097; 310-206-1668


Xin Liu Pathology & Laboratory Medicine, UCLA Molecular genetics of mammalian neurodevelopment, neurological disease, and biological clock.
310-794-5880; 310-825-5454


John Mazziotta Neurology, UCLA Develop, refine, validate and distribute tools and data to measure brain structure and function in both health and disease. 310-825-2699


Walter Metzner Molecular, Cellular and Integrative Physiology Behavioral Neuroscience (Neuroethology). How the central nervous system transforms sensory signals into motor commands that control adaptive behavior. 310-206-2023


Istvan Mody Neurology, UCLA Long-term changes in neuronal excitability through regulation of voltage- and ligand-gated channel function. 310-206-4481


Harold Monbouquette Chemical Engineering, UCLA Biosensors; thermostable redox enzymes for chiral synthesis and for diagnostics. 310-825-8946


Carlo Montemagno Biomedical Engineering & Mechanical Engineering UCLA Integrate life processes with engineered systems at the nano- and atomic scale. The research currently being conducted in our laboratory can be divided into four fundamental research thrusts: Biomolecular Motor-Powered Nanodevices, Applied Nanotechnology and Engineering, Photoluminescent Volumetric Imaging, Environmental Pathogen Monitoring. 310-794-7270


Peter Narins Physiological Science, UCLA Understanding the neural, biophysical and behavioral adaptations exhibited by vertebrates in processing auditory and vibratory signals in background noise. 310-825-0265


Ichiro Nishimura Oral Biology, School of Dentistry, UCLA Genetic control of aging; Molecular mechanisms of cell phenotype determination; Tissue engineering of normal and functional tissues of the face; Biotechnology application to wound healing and chronic pain syndrome. 310-794-7612


Thomas Otis Neurobiology, UCLA Excitatory synaptic transmission; cerebellum. 310-206-0746


William Pardridge

Medicine-Endocrinology, UCLA

Blood-brain barrier; drug targeting to brain, brain gene therapy

310-825-8858; 310-206-8305


Russell Poldrack

Psychology, UCLA

Cognitive neuroscience of human learning and memory

310- 794-1224


Dario Ringach Neurobiology; Psychology, UCLA Visual neurophysiology and psychophysics. 310-206-5461


Jacob Schmidt

Bioengineering, UCLA

Research combines physical and biological nanofabrication techniques with protein engineering to make new kinds of hybrid devices



Felix Schweizer Neurobiology, UCLA
Synaptic transmission. 310-794-5733


Desmond Smith Molecular & Medical Pharmacology, UCLA Neural functional genomics. 310-206-0086; 310-794-5711


Michael Sofroniew Neurobiology, UCLA Neural injury and repair. 310-794-4944


Igor Spigelman Oral Biology and Medicine, School of Dentistry, UCLA Basic mechanisms and treatment of chronic pain and neurodegenerative conditions such as epilepsy, stroke and brain trauma. 310-825-3190


Paul Thompson Neurology, UCLA Neuroimaging and brain mapping. 310-206-2101


Arthur Toga Neurology; Brain Mapping, UCLA Brain mapping, morphometric variability in humans, optical intrinsic imaging for the study of neurovascular coupling and cortical activation in humans and animal models. 310-206-2101; 310-206-6472


Joshua Trachtenberg

Neurobiology, UCLA

Structural basis of functional plasticity in the cerebral cortex.



Julio Vergara

Physiology, UCLA

Skeletal muscle excitation-contraction coupling and synaptic transmission, and regulation of intracellular Ca+ homeostatis.



John Villasenor

Electrical Engineering, UCLA

Research interests are in joint source and channel coding, lattice vector quantization, wavelet filter design, wireless multimedia communications, and low complexity image and video coding architectures and algorithms.



James Weiss Earth & Space Science Division, JPL Robotic surgical tools and exoskeleton technology; micro devices for in situ chemistry and neuromuscular stimulation; fiber optic delivery systems; computational modeling. 818-354-5420


Benjamin Wu Materials Science & Engineering; Biomedical Engineering, UCLA Tissue engineering and neural repair. 310-794-7094


Richard Zimmer Organismic Biology, Ecology & Evolution Design and fabrication of chemical sensors, signal processing and identification of chemosensory information within natural aquatic habitats. 310-825-0087



How to Join

Jack Judy, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering
6731-E Boulter Hall
Mail Code: 159410
Phone: 310-206-1371
Phone: 310-825-2214
Fax: 310-861-5055

Istvan Mody, Ph.D.
Professor of Neurology and Physiology
Neuroscience Research Building, Room 575D
Mail Code: 733422
Phone: 310-206-4481
Fax: 310-206-0033