Sensory and Circadian Neuroscience
Research into the science of pain, vision and circadian biology
This theme includes major programmes on pain, vision, and circadian biology. The research spans basic mechanisms through to clinical and therapeutic studies. Researchers employ a range of techniques including genetics, molecular biology, neuroimaging and experimental medicine.
Research highlights include: investigations into the neural correlates of pain and the perception of pain; and gene therapy trials for inherited forms of blindness including choroideremia.
A major development in 2012 was the creation of the Oxford Sleep and Circadian Neuroscience Institute led by Professor Russell Foster and funded by a major ward from the Wellcome Trust. This brings together a critical mass of researchers at the interface between circadian dysfunction and psychiatric disorders and includes investigators in the Departments of Psychiatry, Physiology Anatomy and Genetics and the Nuffield Department of Clinical Neurosciences. The is the first institute in the world dedicated to the neuroscience of sleep and to advancing our understanding of how sleep and circadian rhythm disruption impacts upon health.