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TRANSCRIPT: Robert Desimone BGF Leader Series

2014-03-14 12.48.13 pm

(BGF) – Recently BGF was fortunate to be able to sit down with Professor Robert Desimone in the latest installment of the Boston Global Forum Leader Series. Professor Desimone is the Doris and Don Berkey Professor in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences at MIT, Director of the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT, and a member of the Boston Global Forum’s Board of Thinkers. In his BGF Leader Series lecture Professor Desimone addressed the work of the McGovern Institute and recent advances in neuroscience research. He also took the time to answer questions sent in from viewers. The transcription of Professor Desimone’s BGF Lecture is provided below. A briefing of Professor Desimone’s talk is also available.

Tuan Nguyen: Welcome! I am Tuan Nguyen, Co-Founder and Editor-in-Chief of the Boston Global Forum. I am very honored to introduce Professor Robert Desimone.

Robert Desimone is the director of the McGovern Institute and the Doris and Don Berkey Professor in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences at MIT and a member of the Boston Global Forum’s Board of Thinkers. Prior to joining the McGovern Institute in 2004, he was director of the Intramural Research Program at the National Institutes of Mental Health, the largest mental health research center in the world. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a recipient of numerous awards, including the Troland Prize of the National Academy of Sciences, and the Golden Brain Award of the Minerva Foundation.

Governor Michael Dukakis, Chairman of Boston Global Forum visited the McGovern Institute on December 12, 2013. He is very impressed and has a high respect for the achievements of the McGovern Institute and Professor Robert Desimone. He and Kitty Dukakis will visit the Institute again in late April 2014. Today Chairman Michael Dukakis and Kitty Dukakis are in Los Angeles, they send their warmest regards to Professor Robert Desimone and the McGovern Institute for Brain Research.

Boston Global Forum will recognize and honor the McGovern Institute’s research achievements and Edward M. Scolnick Prize in Neuroscience in the Boston Global Archive, and at a later stage BGF will add it to the Boston Global Museum, an initiative we are working on for the future.

Today, We are very honored to present to you Professor Robert Desimone on the BGF Leader Series. Thank you so much. Now, Professor Robert Desimone.

Prof. Desimone: Thank you, Tuan. Thank you so much for inviting me to speak on the Boston Global Forum. I support the mission of the Boston Global Forum very much and I especially appreciate the support that Governor Dukakis and Kitty Dukakis have given over the years to brain research – I’m going to talk quite a bit about that today. I’m really just delighted to part of the forum and speaking to you. I thought I would start by just giving you a little bit about my own background. When I was in college, at that time I thought I wanted to be a psychotherapist and help people in therapy suffering from mental illness. Actually, I realized that my talents were not in therapy and I actually had stronger talents in neuroscience research and so I pursued my graduate work at Princeton in neuroscience research and then went to the National Institutes of Health, particularly the National Institute of Mental Health where I was a scientist in the program and eventually became a lab head in the program pursuing my research on the neural basis of how the brain pays attention. Then, at some point, I was asked to become the head of the intramural program for the NIMH, which is the internally funded research division of the National Institute of Mental Health – it is the largest mental health research center in the world, with research ranging from mice to many clinical wards with patients ranging from children to the elderly with a great many clinicians and psychiatrists in the program. When I became responsible for the program I realized how difficult it was for our clinicians to be making progress in coming up with new treatments for the patient populations. They were incredibly committed and they were incredibly smart and hard working, but the sad fact was that the pipeline of new ideas – new drugs and so on – was really pretty dry. I foresaw that this was going to continue unless we really made more progress in understanding a lot of the fundamentals of how the brain worked so that we could develop new treatments based on this fundamental understanding of the brain and its circuits. To make progress in this fundamental research that’s when I decided I would come to MIT – I was offered to become the Director of the McGovern Institute at MIT, which was a fantastic opportunity for me.

Just a bit about the McGovern Institute. The McGovern Institute was founded in 2000 by Pat and Lore McGovern at MIT. Over the years we have put together a team of faculty members that now includes 19 faculty members whose research ranges from basic mechanisms of genetics and neural development, even in worms going up through a variety of other animal species and then into human subjects where we study human cognition, health, and disease. We have many distinguished faculty members – several members of the National Academy of Science and one Nobel Prize winner, Bob Horvitz, for his work on the genetic basis of program cell death which plays a very important role in the development and ongoing operation of the brain. In retrospect, I feel that the decision to come to MIT, where we had such a strong foundation in basic research, was really the best decision I have made in my research career and my decision has really been borne out by what has happened since then. It has become clear in just the last few years that psychiatric diseases that we thought, for example, were very, very distinct from one another – schizophrenia, bipolar disease, autism, very, very distinct orders that at least appeared so from a clinical point of view – actually share many, many genes that lead to vulnerability for these disorders. Many of these genes affect how neurons communicate with each other in the brain and problems in neural communication can lead to increased vulnerability for any number of psychiatric disorders. So, focusing on the fundamentals – focusing on those commonalities, things like: how neurons communicate in the healthy brain and how can that go wrong?; how can you have miscommunication that would lead to a psychiatric disorder? – has really proven to be the best approach. Once you lay this foundation of knowledge at a basic level then you can proceed on to translational studies where you can test new treatments.

This philosophy has been adopted also by our president, President Obama, in the new BRAIN Initiative, which is focused on the development of new technology for brain research. New technology is one of those things where when you have an all-new technique – it’s like for the astronomers the invention of the telescope or for the biologist, the invention of the microscope. For the neuroscientist, putting powerful new tools in their hands is going to lead to rapid progress across the board in neuroscience research and it will surely accelerate the pace of research that will lead to new treatments for mental disease.

I thought I would use the next few minutes to tell you about some of the most exciting advances in brain research, all of them actually driven by new technology that has been developed in just the past few years. I guess I would start with sort of the prototype for how we imagine research becoming accelerated in the future, which is the cost of sequencing the genome. As many of you know, it was the human genome sequencing project that led to the sequencing of the human genome some years ago, but it was an incredibly expensive enterprise that took tremendous resources, spread across labs, and took many years to accomplish. But now the cost of sequencing has dropped so low, compared to the initial cost, that a project that initially was many millions of dollars now costs on the order of a few thousand dollars to sequence the genome of one individual. That has opened up genomic approaches to large populations. We’ve had an explosion of genetic discoveries in all areas of medicine but I would say particularly in psychiatric disorders where we have now a reasonable understanding of some of the many genes that are contributing to vulnerabilities to these disorders. Now, of course, there is no direct link between a genetic mutation and a psychiatric disorder in almost any case, only very rare cases. But the mutations can lead to increased vulnerability – so there may be some other event that happens in life, whether it’s a virus, a biological factor, an environmental stresser, many, many different factors are going to interact on a genetic basis – but together these genetic mutations can lead to this increased vulnerability and that’s fueling a host of new neuroscience studies to understand this link between a genetic vulnerability and how you ultimately end up with an abnormally functioning neural circuit and then dysfunctional behavior and once we understand those links then we can intervene with treatment. We’ve tremendously benefitted from the new technology involved in sequencing. Some of the other major advances in just the last few years include what, in neuroscience, we call optogenetics. This is one of the many tools of neuroscience that has come out of the genetic program – these are the tools of genetics. With optogenetics researchers are able to insert genetic material into neurons and make them sensitive to light. That allows the researchers to have exquisite control over the neural circuits involved in health and disease – these are in animal models so far – but have exquisite control over these neural patterns and to test our ideas about how these circuits work and how they might break down from disease. There will be clinical applications in the future. Perhaps the first will be in the treatment for blindness – there are already studies underway to put this genetic material into cells in our retina for people suffering from macular degeneration, retinitis pigmentosa, for example – that could help restore vision in these people by making some of the other neural elements in the retina sensitive to light when the photo-receptors are destroyed. I think we’ll see applications in brain stimulation and Parkinson’s Disease, perhaps depression, and so on. It has completely changed the pace of neuroscience discovery in just the last several years. Two, actually 3, of our faculty members here in the McGovern Institute played an absolutely key role in the development of optogenetics including Ed Boydon, Feng Zhang, and Guoping Feng, who are all continuing to do research, some of which involves optogenetics today.

Another major technological advance that has really impacted our research is human brain imagining in many forms. Most of it’s based on MRI machines which I’m sure most of the audience has seen pictures of these machines in magazine articles and so on; the large doughnut-shaped machines and people get inserted and then you can image the brain. Most people have seen structural images of brains that have come out of these machines but we can now image functional changes, we can track the activity patterns in the brain – at least on a coarse temporal time-scale – and you can actually see the brain at work as people solve problems, have emotions, understand situations, and so on, and its been applied now to many different patient groups to try to track down sources of abnormal neural circuits. In just the next few years I think that this new brain imaging technology will be paired with these genetic approaches so that, in the future, when we talk about genetic mutation that leads to a vulnerability for disease such as depression, or bipolar, or schizophrenia, we’d be able to actually say something about what that vulnerability really means. We might be able to say that the vulnerability involves abnormal activity in certain particular brain circuits that we’ve identified in MRIs by imaging people that we’ve done this genotyping on. Once we’ve narrowed that down, between the gene alteration and the abnormal activity in circuits, that is going to put us on the right path to new discoveries.

Another just really amazing discovery in just the past year came out of Stanford where in the Karl Deisseroth Lab they developed a way of making the brain, at least of animals, completely transparent so you can actually see straight through it. If you combine that technology with genetic tools for labeling cells you can track the connections within neural circuits with unprecedented precision. People are just now gearing up to apply this new technology and human brain material from people who have died but have lived lives where they’ve suffered from schizophrenia, Alzheimer’s Disease, and so on and we will be able, with unprecedented ability, to track the abnormalities in this brain tissue from people who have died with disease.

Increasingly we’re adopting the tools of modern industrial production in neuroscience research. One of the things that made genetic research possible was the application of robots that carried out the hundreds and thousands and millions of repetitive tasks to do the sequencing. Well, the same robotic technology is being applied to neuroscience studies where it’s now possible to use robots to record the activity of different interacting neurons. Soon we’ll have this ability to record and sample neural material from these disease models of human disease and relate the changes in neurons to the underlying genetic vulnerability that we see in mental disease. This is a program that is being spearheaded here by Ed Boyden in the McGovern Institute.

Of course, there is a great need for us to develop really quantitative theories of brain function. The incredible, valuable role of theories is obvious in fields like physics and chemistry, for example, but in neuroscience that’s been really difficult to achieve because we’ve lacked a lot of the basic facts about how these neural circuits work. Again, just in the last several years, in part due to the new technology and rapid pace of discovery, we’re developing better and better theories about how neural circuits work. We have a new center at MIT – the Center for Mind, Brains, and Machines headed by Tommy Poggio, a faculty member at the Institute – that is funded by the National Science Foundation with the goal of understanding human intelligence, developing quantitative, testable theories of intelligent behavior, and then testing these ideas through these models and even through applications to intelligent machines. So, for example, there was an effort to develop intelligent robots that would have some aspect of human intelligence and be able to learn from new situations and make better decisions and so on. This is really, I think, part of the overall effort that we’ll be seeing in the next few years to put intelligence into many of the devices we operate with everyday and I think our evaluation of that kind of intelligence will be is it the kind of intelligence that a human being would have in the same situation? And this is the kind of thing that neuroscience will be contributing a lot to is this understanding of what that intelligent behavior really is.

So, I’ve emphasized the disease applications of neuroscience because, of course that’s our primary goal in neuroscience research, but again, going back to the basic research enterprise, understanding the human brain is surely the greatest frontier in science today. It will give us insight into the nature of ourselves and it will clearly require the effort of people all over the world. We, here at the McGovern Institute, have interactions with scientists all over the world, we’re helping to build neuroscience programs in other countries, we have a very active program in China, for example. We want to bring in worldwide neuroscientists to work on these programs and in return I think we will also gain a better understanding of how the human brain functions in different cultures – how there may be miscommunications between people across cultures because of basically how our brains are constructed and how we might do a better job of understanding and communicating with people with many varied backgrounds, different expectations, and so on. I know that was certainly one of the initial goals of Pat and Lore McGovern when they founded the Institute, was to lead to this increased communications between people which would certainly lead to a better and more peaceful world for us all.

Finally, the last thing I’ll mention is, of course, many of you may have questions about the ethics of neuroscience research: what does this all mean? What are the implications of neuroscience research for many of the ethical issues we are concerned about – privacy and so on? And I think that that’s another topic that needs to be included in the mix of issues in the upcoming years of neuroscience research – we need to be attentive to these issues, we need to engage people in all areas from around the world in all walks of life in this discussion, and in the end have, I hope, everyone understand that we’re all in this effort together, we’re all making the effort and we’ll all reap the benefits I hope of neuroscience research in the future.

So, I hope that has given you a bit of an introduction to what we’re trying to do here and the research we do and I’d be happy to answer some of your questions.

Mr. Tuan: Great, thank you so much for your very interesting introduction and talk. Thank you to our audience for enthusiastically sending questions and watching our talks. So today we chose questions that were sent from our audience to ask the professor today. The first question is: is it true that we only use 10% of the productivity of our brains? As a neuroscientist, can you tell me the ways to unlock the brain to its highest potential productivity?

Robert Desimone: I think that the figure 10% is a bit of an exaggeration. But the point, I think, is highly relevant, which is that we don’t, in fact, use our brain to its fullest potential in many cases. And one of the goals of neuroscience research is to expand opportunities for people to realize that potential and particularly to influence the education of our children. We’ve learn a tremendous [amount] about how the brain learns and the conditions in which the brain learns optimally. And we’re already doing studies here at the McGovern Institute to see how we can improve education in schools, applying principles of neuroscience. We have tests going on both here in Boston and in sites around the world. And I would see that as a huge goal – is to enhance the learning of people from children going to adults.

Interviewer: So the next question is: Is there anything I can do to keep my brain in old age?

Robert Desimone: Well, that’s a question a lot of people are struggling with today. There’s a lot of interest in that as we all get older. We’re all thinking about what we can do to keep our brains healthy in aging. And there are certainly some studies that suggest that challenging mental activity can keep the brain healthy. And I think there is also good evidence that keeping your body healthy has the indirect effect of keeping your brain healthy. I mean your brain is another organ in the body and so people who keep themselves fit and exercise, and so on, are likely to have better blood flow to the brain and that’s all going to help as we get older.

Interviewer: So our audience wants to ask can we predict our actions and emotional state by learning about our brains?

Robert Desimone: Prediction is a tricky issue. I would say we would understand better our actions and emotional reactions to things from understanding the brain. To just give you one example, some neuroscientists have done studies of empathy – how it is that we can feel sorry for people. And we’ve had subjects in brain imaging scanners observing videos of other people interacting and so on. And what has been found is that when you see someone being hurt, that you’re utilizing some of the same neuro-circuits you use when you yourself are hurt. So empathy seems to involve a brain system that relates back to yourself. How would I feel in that situation? And that is something that would be strongly encouraged, for people to take on that attitude. And the brain is sort of biased to that kind of approach.

Interviewer: So the next questions are about the prize the achievements of the Institute. First question: from 2014, the winners and the achievements of the McGovern Institute for Brain research will be honored by the Boston Global Forum, and later the achievements will be put in Boston Global Museum. Can you explain more about the Scolnick Prize of Neuroscience and its link to unlock the human brain?

Robert Desimone: I should say first of all that the Scholnick Prize was endowed by the Merck Pharmaceutical Company to honor Ed Scholnick, who was their director of research for many years – I think 25 years. Led to many of the major, new drug treatments that came out of work over those years. And Ed is right here in Boston. He’s over at the Broad Institute right across the street from our Institute, where he leads a group doing research on psychiatric disorders. He’s a giant in the field of medicine and biology. The prize is meant to honor neuroscientists who have done outstanding work either at the basic level or more translational – closer to disease. Every year, it’s different. This particular year, the prize is going to Huda Zaghbi, who I think really epitomizes the goal of neuroscience. She’s someone who has done both basic research on brain circuits and the role of genes, but has also done fantastic work on understanding a particular genetic form of autism. She’s developed animal models. She’s identified some of the gene variants in people, and someone who is clearly making a difference in clinical science, and based on this foundation of great work in neuroscience.

Interviewer: Our audience wants to ask, what is the greatest achievement of the McGovern Institute?

Robert Desimone: Well in the time that the McGovern Institute has been in existence since 2000, I would say certainly our greatest recognition was the Nobel Prize that was won by Bob Horvitz for his work on the genetic basis of program cell death – incredibly important discovery in really all of biology. [It] certainly affects our understanding of brain function. That will be hard to top. But we’ve had many of our scientists who have made fantastic discoveries. One of our most senior, distinguished scientists, Ann Graybiel, is very well known for her work on the neural-circuits involved both in Parkinson’s Disease and, as it turns out, same circuits playing an important role on how we learn habits, repetitive actions and so on. We have the development of optic genetics, which initially started at Stanford, but a lot of that work is going on in the McGovern Institute here today. We have some fantastic new work from our faculty member Feng Zhang editing the genome like editing our DNA like you would in say a word processor. Incredibly important new tools. So I would say those are some things I would highlight.

Interviewer: So what research does The Institute focus on?

Robert Desimone: You know, I think one of our biggest strengths, is that we haven’t chosen one narrow topic as an institute but we’re supporting work on, really, a lot of areas, which share fundamental neural-mechanisms. It turns out, [as] I just mentioned, neural-circuits involved in learning new habits turned out to be neural-circuits that are playing a role in Parkinson’s Disease. So certain neurotransmitters, dopamine, for example involved in Parkinson’s Disease, play a very important role in normal learning and so on, and so on. So we’re building on this base of overlapping circuits and functions and then making progress from there.

Interviewer: So the next question is about the future of brain research. What achievements do you want to obtain in the next five years?

Robert Desimone: Well, as a director of an institute, I guess there’s always a temptation to promise perhaps more than can be delivered and I never like to overhype the progress of research in a short time frame. I do think it is realistic to expect that in the next five years we will really have made substantial progress in mapping out this pathway from a genetic alteration to an altered neural-circuit that underlies an important psychiatric disease. This will happen from animal models all the way up to human subjects.

Interviewer: Can you give a prediction to when scientists can really unlock the brain?

Robert Desimone: Well, I expect that that will be part of the one aspect of what our species is involved with forever – we will always try to understand our brain more and more just like saying when will we really unlock the secrets of the universe. I think there’s practically an infinity of secrets to unlock. So I really think it’s going to be exciting as the discoveries continue to roll in over time.

Interviewer: Do you think it is possible to reproduce human brains once we have unlocked them? And do you think it will make people immortal?

Robert Desimone: To understand human brains and…

Interviewer: After we unlock them, can we reproduce human brains?

Robert Desimone: You mean like in software?

Interviewer: Yeah.

Robert Desimone: Actually, I have two friends that were having a debate years ago of how we might most likely achieve immortality: one would be through biological approaches where we would learn to stop the aging process and the other would be through software, where we would understand so much about brain function load, essentially, our brain operations into a computer and then when our bodies died out, we could live forever in computer software. Anyhow, my two friends debated the opposite sides; they took opposite sides on that bet and we’re still waiting to see how that bet turns out. I don’t know about transferring our full consciousness, but as I said earlier we’re certainly going to have many aspects of human intelligence emulated in software and computers and so on. All the devices that we interact with – our phones, our tablets and so on are all going to be increasingly intelligent and less frustrating for us to deal with.

Interviewer: Do you think the spirit contained in human brains will end once humans pass away?

Robert Desimone: Well this question of whether there is an immortal soul that would live on past the death of the brain itself, I think obviously it’s a religious issue that I don’t think scientists have a lot to contribute to. I think that there’s a very healthy dialogue between religious leaders and scientists now and both sides trying to learn from each other. But scientists are no different from anyone else in wondering about questions just like that.

Interviewer: Can you explain more about the sixth sense? Where is it located in our brains and how does it work?

Robert Desimone: By the sixth sense, I’m assuming you mean some paranormal ability – that people have some sense of what’s going on in the world or other people and so on or what’s going to happen in the future. And I must say that that is a question that scientists can do research on, whether people truly have these abilities. Frankly, the evidence for this has been unconvincing so far, that people can predict the future or have awareness of things that can’t be experienced through any of their other senses. So I think people are open-minded, would be convinced if there were convincing evidence that came forward but I don’t think currently there’s evidence for those kind of abilities.

Interviewer: Some computer science students and some mathematicians in Vietnam want to ask whether they have any chance to research at your McGovern Institute. And if they do, how can they apply for that?

Robert Desimone: As I mentioned earlier, we have a strong interest in supporting and helping to develop neuroscience around the world. If you came to visit the McGovern Institute, you will see that we have people here from countries all around the world and including from Vietnam and we welcome people who want to be trained here and so on. Our contact information is on the website. If there’s someone who wants to do research and so on, we’d be happy to talk with them. Of course we are always looking for sources of support for people to come here. We’ve had some donors who have come forward and offered their support for people from some countries but we’d like to build that base of support for students from around the world. And I look forward to that.

Interviewer: The next question is from a computer expert in Vietnam and he would like to ask, “I would like to work as an associate for the McGovern Institute. I have a scholarship in research, can the McGovern Institute sponsor a Visa J1 for me?”

Robert Desimone: We sponsor many visa’s for international students and scientists from around the world. So again, I can’t comment on a particular case from someone I don’t know but I would welcome this person to contact us and we can have that dialogue. I’m hoping to visit Vietnam in the not-distant future. I hope to meet some people there. You know, one of the things I found is that there is often some reluctance to take people from a country if you don’t know anyone there – just human nature. It’s hard to evaluate people when you don’t know anything about them about the people who are recommending them. I think we need to build up this communication among the faculty members at different universities in different countries so we all know each other and we can appreciate their evaluations when they tell us they have a great student that would like to work with us. I take that as a very, very high priority.

Interviewer: So this is our last question today. Buddism has principal brain and its spirit. Do you agree with that principle?

Robert Desimone: I must say I’m not greatly familiar with Buddhism. I know that many Buddhists believe in the value of meditation and there’s quite a bit of research going on now around the world on the benefits of meditation and what effects meditation has on the brain. There’s, I think, quite good evidence that meditation leads to stress reductions and working through stress systems, it seems to have beneficial effects on many different aspects and bodily function – brain and other functions. So I think we have some people who have been practicing effective techniques for hundreds of thousands of years and I think we have the tools to do that now.

Interviewer: So we just have a new question from Vietnam. Director of the Institute of Biotechnology and Environment in Nha Trang University of Vietnam, “I’m now studying conotoxins from cone snails. It is the beginning of our institute. I have 2 questions for you. The first one is what do you think of the prospect conotoxin in neuroscience, and the treatment of disease related to the neuro-system?

Robert Desimone: You know I think some of our most exciting new ideas about treatments are coming from, we call, natural products—coming from nature. Conotoxins are an example of that, where different animal species, plants and so on have very active compounds that have evolved, of course for different reasons, but we discover that they have many applications in human disease. I’m not an expert in this particular case, but I think I’m very excited in general by that kind of approach.

Interviewer: The second question is, “I would like to build up a group of neuroscientists in my institute. Could we connect with your institute to get some help?”

Robert Desimone: Yes. We’d be happy to talk with anyone who’s building a neuroscience program. We could share advice, knowledge – there might be possibility of collaboration and so on. We are very, very open to that kind of approach. As I said, these are really big problems we’re working on and they are absolutely going to talk the efforts of people all around the world, and we all benefit from this interaction. It’s not one way. It’s not us just helping someone else. What I’ve found always in my international interactions is that once you begin that dialogue with people in other countries, everyone benefits. We all benefit – we all gain new knowledge, we all gain new talent in the field and so on. So I look forward to it.

Tuan Nguyen: Thank you so much for your questions, my audience. We selected around 25 questions but we are running out of time so we cannot send all questions to Professor Desimone. So we have a few last minutes, what things can you say with our audience. In Vietnam now, it’s nearly 10pm. I received some emails from our people – our audience says thanks so much from Paris. You know it’s night time in Paris or very early morning. So they are watching now. So thank you very much for your enthusiasm. Professor, please say something with our audience from Paris, from Vietnam.

Robert Desimone: All these other countries, I think they’re all later than us, right? They’re all later or later in the day or nighttime and so I especially appreciate that you’re up late at night to watch this program. I travel around the world, of course, my biggest problem is jetlag, where my own brain is functioning—maybe that is the 10 percent capacity that people worry about – at very low capacity. Maybe people can review some of the scientific material in the morning when their brains are fresh. Again I really appreciate this opportunity to talk to the Boston Global Forum. I will really appreciate it if it’s had some impact so that if people around the world do follow-up, do contact us, do think about neuroscience research, how they might support it, how they might participate and so on. That’s the practical outcome that I think makes us all happy.

Tuan Nguyen: I hear that on April 30, The Institute will have a lecture by the Scholnick Prize winner…

Robert Desimone: Zogbi, yes. We try to put all of our lectures online. We have a large video archive. We have many distinguished neuroscientists who have given talks here. If you go to our website, many of them are available. I believe that Dr. Zogbi’s talk will also be online. I encourage you to watch that and follow up.

Tuan Nguyen: Yes, great. Thank you so much. I wish the best for your institute and new achievements. And we’ll prepare for the visit of Governor Micahel Dukakis in late April. Maybe the governor can visit. We hope your institute will be the first to unlock the human brain.

Robert Desimone: So do we.

Tuan Nguyen: Thank you so much. Thank you for your time—a very interesting talk and or taking your time to talk to our audience. And thank you so much again for your time and for sending questions to Professor Desimone and for watching in the early morning. See you later in another program. Thank you.