Rafael Yuste

yuste-300x300-newResearch Area I: Optical Methods for Neuroscience Leader

Columbia University

Rafael Yuste is a Professor of Biological Sciences and Neuroscience, Co­Director of the Kavli Institute of Brain Science and Director of the NeuroTechnology Center (NTC) at Columbia University. He has scientific expertise in the fields of the anatomy, physiology, and computation in cortical microcircuits with an extensive track record in the development of optical methods for neuroscience, including calcium imaging of neural circuits, two­photon imaging and manipulation of neuronal activity, with patented inventions such as optochemical compounds and holographic microscopy. He led the group of researchers that first proposed the BRAIN initiative and is currently a member of the NIH BRAIN workgroup.

Dr. Yuste’s laboratory’s research plan aims to couple large­scale high resolution imaging methods with awake behaving rodent (mouse) experiments to acquire, using two photon holographic microscopy, the physiological and dynamical data needed to construct and tune and large­scale, recurrent, dynamical models of mouse V1 (Miller, Ayzenshtat et al. 2014, Quirin, Jackson et al. 2014, Yuste and Church 2014, Carrillo­Reid L 2015). Dr. Yuste uses the same optical techniques and specialized Ketamine or genetic schizophrenia mouse models to identify the microcircuit level substrate of two established oscillatory biomarkers of schizophrenia (alpha and gamma­band synchronization) in visual cortex. Using a pharmacological 4AP mouse model, the laboratory is devising an innovative treatment concept for rapid containment of epileptic activity in which (1) high density multi­electrode seizure detection across multiple brain depths and (2) an automated targeted micro­fluidic delivery of anti­epileptics are combined within a single integrated device. This device, called the “Electro-Fluidic Bio­Probe”, will be as thin as implantable probes that are already commonly used in neurological disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, ensuring minimally invasive implantability into epileptic tissue (Zhao M 2015).

Email: rmy5@columbia.edu

Personal Website


  1. Miller JE, Ayzenshtat I, Carrillo­Reid L, Yuste R. Visual stimuli recruit intrinsically generated cortical ensembles. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2014 Sep 23;111(38):E4053­61. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1406077111. Epub 2014 Sep 8. PubMed PMID:25201983; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4183303.[PubMed]
  2. Yuste R, Church GM. The new century of the brain. Sci Am. 2014 Mar;310(3):38­45. PubMed PMID: 24660326. [PubMed]
  3. Kandel ER, Markram H, Matthews PM, Yuste R, Koch C. Neuroscience thinks big (and collaboratively). Nat Rev Neurosci. 2013 Sep;14(9):659­64. doi: 10.1038/nrn3578. PubMed PMID: 23958663. [PubMed]
  4. Yuste R. Electrical compartmentalization in dendritic spines. Annu Rev Neurosci. 2013 Jul 8;36:429­49. doi: 10.1146/annurev­neuro­062111­150455. Epub 2013 May 29. Review. PubMed PMID: 23724997. [PubMed]
  5. Alivisatos AP, Andrews AM, Boyden ES, Chun M, Church GM, Deisseroth K, Donoghue JP, Fraser SE, Lippincott­Schwartz J, Looger LL, Masmanidis S, McEuen PL, Nurmikko AV, Park H, Peterka DS, Reid C, Roukes ML, Scherer A, Schnitzer M, Sejnowski TJ, Shepard KL, Tsao D, Turrigiano G, Weiss PS, Xu C, Yuste R, Zhuang X. Nanotools for neuroscience and brain activity mapping. ACS Nano. 2013 Mar 26;7(3):1850­66. doi: 10.1021/nn4012847. Epub 2013 Mar 20. Review. PubMed PMID: 23514423; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3665747. [PubMed]
  6. Alivisatos AP, Chun M, Church GM, Deisseroth K, Donoghue JP, Greenspan RJ, McEuen PL, Roukes ML, Sejnowski TJ, Weiss PS, Yuste R. Neuroscience. The brain activity map. Science. 2013 Mar 15;339(6125):1284­5. doi: 10.1126/science.1236939. Epub 2013 Mar 7. PubMed PMID: 23470729; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3722427. [PubMed]