Synchronous oscillatory activity is a universal phenomenon that occurs in biological systems ranging from the level of intracellular dynamics to population dynamics across thousands of kilometers.
The National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS) is now accepting applications for its Investigative Workshop: Synchrony in Biological Systems Across Scales to be held April 11-13, 2011, at NIMBioS on the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, campus. The workshop will bring together a diverse group of researchers to explore how ideas about the study of synchrony in one field can provide novel insights into questions of synchrony in another field and to identify gaps in the theory of synchrony from a biological perspective and possible avenues of progress.
The dynamics of synchrony has significant biological implications across a range of fields.
Explanations of synchrony can be used to understand the forces controlling biological dynamics, as in studies of childhood diseases. In ecology, the absence of spatial synchrony is often thought to play a role in persistence of species. In neural systems, synchrony plays a role in sensory processing and cognition and in the coordination of locomotion and respiration in diseases such as Parkinson's and epilepsy. Synchrony is also prevalent in the fields of circadian rhythms, intracellular dynamics, as well as various areas of physics and chemistry and engineering. The importance of synchrony in these wide range of fields has led to large bodies of literature on synchrony that have little cross-referencing.
The workshop is organized by Alan Hastings (Environmental Science and Policy, University of California, Davis, CA); Tim Lewis (Department of Mathematics, University of California, Davis, CA); and Michael Bosnall (Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK).
NIMBioS Investigative Workshops involve 30-40 participants, of which about half are invited. Individuals with a strong interest in the topic can also apply to attend. For more information about the workshop, go to http://www.nimbios.org/workshops/WS_synchrony
The National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS) brings together researchers from around the world to collaborate across disciplinary boundaries to investigate solutions to basic and applied problems in the life sciences. NIMBioS is sponsored by the National Science Foundation, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture with additional support from The University of Tennessee, Knoxville.
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