My research interests

My primary research interests are in the area of biological modeling. Over the last few years, my colleagues and I have developed a physiologically-based model of the aortic baroreceptor neuron using rat data from our labs and from the literature. This model employs three stages: a viscoelastic arterial wall represented by coupled springs and dashpots; a Hodgkin-Huxley-type transducer membrane which transduces wall strain to a generator potential via a mechanosensitive channel; and a Hodgkin-Huxley-type model of the spike initiation zone at the first node of Ranvier. We are currently utilizing this model to analyze and predict ionic mechanisms responsible for the nonlinear behavior observed in the baroreceptor, including post-excitatory depression and hysteresis. A recent abstract summarizes some of our latest findings.
I have developed an interest in the analytical tools used to interpret signal data, including Fourier analysis and describing function methods. I am fascinated by nonlinearity and chaos and the techniques used to study them. I have dabbled in optimization, but have had only limited success in applying such techniques to the high-order nonlinear models developed by our group. Recently, in addition to my continuing work with the baroreceptor model, I have been involved with developing a model of the rat heart and near systemic circulation, as well as a model of human metabolism.
Last modified: 14 Jan 2001