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Ed Boyden

Leader, Synthetic Neurobiology Group, MIT

Ed Boyden is associate professor of Biological Engineering and Brain and Cognitive Sciences at the MIT Media Lab and the MIT McGovern Institute. He leads the Synthetic Neurobiology Group, which develops tools for analyzing and engineering the circuits of the brain, and co-directs the MIT Center for Neurobiological Engineering, which aims to develop new tools to accelerate neuroscience progress. These technologies, created often in interdisciplinary collaborations, include “optogenetic” tools, which enable the activation and silencing of brain cells with light, devices that enable control and readout of neural activity in distributed brain circuits, and robotic methods for automatically recording neural activity in the living brain. He has received the Jacob Heskel Gabbay Award (2013), the Grete Lundbeck European “Brain” Prize, the largest brain research prize in the world (2013), the Perl/UNC Neuroscience Prize (2011), the NIH Director’s Pioneer Award (2013), and many other honors. He has contributed to over 300 peer-reviewed papers, current or pending patents, and articles, and has given over 250 invited talks on his group’s work.