NAD Fellow year: 2024

Marta Tataryn

MSc in Neuroscience, University of Trieste

Lab rotations - pre-PhD year

Lab Rotation 1

Analysis Group, Center of Functionally Integrative Neuroscience, Aarhus University w/PI Professor Diego Vidaurre

The way we perceive the world around us feels stable to a healthy person, but perception is a changing phenomenon. For example, for stimuli weak enough to be in the threshold of perception, we might sometimes feel and sometimes not notice. But, what determines this variability, e.g. whether whether we feel a weak stimulus or not? Marta is learning  machine learning techiques to analyse a data set from collaborators in Germany, where a tactile stimulus in the threshold of perception is presented multiple times to healthy participants. Each stimulus presentation is preceded by a relatively long period of time with no stimulation. The aim is to identify and characterise brain states in this period that determine whether the stimulus is perceived or not later on.

Meet Marta Tataryn

Marta Tataryn has a keen interest in systems neuroscience and the complex computation of the brain.

Marta Tataryn completed her master’s degree in Neuroscience from the University of Trieste in 2023. For her master’s thesis, Marta investigated neuronal dynamics with calcium imaging and electrophysiology in vitro.

After completing her thesis, she applied for a research internship at the Kavli Institute of Systems Neuroscience at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim to further explore the area of systems neuroscience. Here, she was exposed to big electrophysiology datasets and learned to relate them to complex behaviours:

“I am interested in how the brain is able to do this complex computation, and in particular how memory and learning processes are able to influence these complex processes,” Marta explains.

This interest in the intricacies of human thinking and behavior was what led Marta into neuroscience in the first place:

“During high school, I attended philosophy lessons that were super interesting and I was wondering if maybe that was what I should study. However, I realised I required more scientific methods. Therefore, I decided to study biotechnology in order to study a master’s degree in neuroscience afterwards,” Marta explains.

For her first rotation, Marta will join the Analysis lab led by Professor Diego Vidaurre at Aarhus University:

“I contacted Diego because I would like my future PhD project to be as multidisciplinary as possible.  As I have some knowledge gaps within computational neuroscience, I would like to improve my computational skills,” Marta explains. For one of her later rotations, she is interested in joining a lab focusing on the hippocampus, especially learning and memory processes.

Originally from Ukraine, growing up in Italy and living in Norway for the past year, Marta is no stranger to environmental and cultural shifts. She is excited to start her PhD journey in Denmark and to utilise the rotations during the pre-PhD year as efficiently as possible to improve her skills – and her connections within Danish neuroscience.