The Helen Wills
Neuroscience Institute

Deepening our understanding of the brain and the rest of the nervous system through original research and neurotechnology innovation, and training the next generation of neuroscientists.

The Helen Wills
Neuroscience Institute

Deepening our understanding of the brain and the rest of the nervous system through original research and neurotechnology innovation, and training the next generation of neuroscientists.

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PhD Program
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An image of dendritic spines on neurons in the mouse cortex, produced using new microscopy technology developed by HWNI member Eric Betzig.   

A Multidisciplinary Approach to Neuroscience

The Helen Wills Neuroscience Institute (HWNI) is the nexus for campus-wide multidisciplinary neuroscience research at UC Berkeley. Our community includes over 70 faculty members in 12 academic departments. This unique cross-departmental structure brings together experts from a variety of fields to use the power of interdisciplinary research to achieve breakthroughs in the study of the brain and nervous system, and to drive the development of novel treatments and technologies. 

We support our faculty and their labs in their individual research aims, and foster opportunities for collaboration. We also sponsor major research initiatives, run five innovative neurotechnology and research centers, and train the next generation of neuroscientists through our Neuroscience PhD Program and the training of postdoctoral fellows who conduct research in HWNI faculty labs. We also have over 100 PhD Program alumni who work in a variety of careers across the globe.

Latest News

Right off the bats: What the only flying mammal can teach us about the brain

Right off the bats: What the only flying mammal can teach us about the brain

Learn about HWNI member Michael Yartsev’s research in this profile from Berkeley Engineering.
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Welcome to our new Neuroscience PhD Program Manager Leleña Avila!

Welcome to our new Neuroscience PhD Program Manager Leleña Avila!

Learn more about Leleña Avila in a message from PhD Program Director Michael Silver.
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Overlooked folds in the brain are related to the development of reasoning skills

Overlooked folds in the brain are related to the development of reasoning skills

New study from the labs of HWNI members Kevin Weiner and Silvia Bunge.
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Brain area that maps space also maps abstract relationships, using a similar code

Brain area that maps space also maps abstract relationships, using a similar code

New study from the Wallis lab shows that the hippocampus maps relative value.
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Q&A with Joni Wallis

Q&A with Joni Wallis

HWNI faculty member Joni Wallis is profiled in this Q&A from Neuron.
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UC Berkeley Neuroscience tenure track faculty position opportunity

UC Berkeley Neuroscience tenure track faculty position opportunity

Assistant Professor - NeuroEngineering - Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences and Helen Wills Neuroscience Institute Apply by December 10, 2021...
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New study of the brain’s circuitry will track Parkinson’s disease from its origins

New study of the brain’s circuitry will track Parkinson’s disease from its origins

HWNI member Yang Dan is part of the collaboration, funded by the ASAP initiative.
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Markita Landry awarded Vilcek Prize in Biomedical Science

Markita Landry awarded Vilcek Prize in Biomedical Science

Congratulations to HWNI member Markita Landry!
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Recent Faculty Publications

07 Sep 2021
Front Hum Neurosci. 2021 Aug 18;15:702520. doi: 10.3389/fnhum.2021.702520. eCollection 2021.ABSTRACTThe human brain has the astonishing capacity of integrating streams of sensory information from the environment and forming predictions about future...
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06 Sep 2021
Neuroimage. 2021 Sep 3:118553. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2021.118553. Online ahead of print.ABSTRACTTau PET has allowed for critical insights into in vivo patterns of tau accumulation and change in individuals early in the...
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06 Sep 2021
Mol Ther Methods Clin Dev. 2021 May 29;22:40-51. doi: 10.1016/j.omtm.2021.05.009. eCollection 2021 Sep 10.ABSTRACTNeuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis (NCL) is a family of neurodegenerative diseases caused by mutations to genes related to...
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02 Sep 2021
Psychol Sci. 2021 Sep 2:9567976211004547. doi: 10.1177/09567976211004547. Online ahead of print.ABSTRACTPeople's perceptual reports are biased toward percepts they are motivated to see. The arousal system coordinates the body's response to...
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01 Sep 2021
Alzheimers Dement (Amst). 2021 Aug 24;13(1):e12230. doi: 10.1002/dad2.12230. eCollection 2021.ABSTRACTINTRODUCTION: Head injuries (HI) are a risk factor for dementia, but the underlying etiology is not fully known. Understanding whether tau...
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