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March 8-9, 2012
Workshop on Coordinated activity in physiology: measures, concepts and

Jose Luis Perez Velazquez
The Hospital for Sick Children and University of Toronto.
Roberto Fernández Galán,
Case Western Reserve University, Dept. of Neurosciences, School of Medicine, Cleveland


Biological phenomena are characterised by the coordin ation of the collective activity amongst the constituents of the particular system. Physiological recordings at almost any level display prominent rhythmic activity as the emergent property of those collective coordinated actions. The study of this coordination in the activity amongst cells and organs is fundamental for the understanding of physiology in health and in pathology. How to capture the coordination is not a trivial matter and many methods have been devised, from analysis of synchronization to other complexity measures. The abundance of distinct methods to record physiological activity and the wide arsenal of analytical techniques to evaluate coordinated activity, while offering many avenues to comprehend physiological phenomena from different perspectives, it also has the potential of creating confusion in the field. Specifically in brain research, for instance, the study of coordinated actions in neural ensembles has introduced the concept of "connectivity", with different aspects being currently discussed in the literature, like functional and effective connectivity. However, this term is used to describe the results from a wide variety of analysis derived from neurophysiological recordings ranging from metabolic measures (as in functional magnetic resonance) to voltage recordings (as in electroencephalography), but the nature of all these recording techniques makes it almost unfeasible to assess real, direct connectivity. Hence, it can be stated that what is really evaluated are the correlations of activity between brain areas, rather than connections per se, which could be achieved by other type of recordings where chains of cellular activity are clearly observed. Thus, one key aspect that will be addressed in this workshop is the potential, perchance dubious, validity of current analytical methods to truly evaluate connectivity, rather than just explore correlations in activity. Other areas to be discussed include the possibility to alter physiological collective activity in order to, for example, prevent pathologies.
While most studies focus on one organ in particular (brain, heart, …) we should not lose sight of the fact that, in an organism, all organs are coupled and the different systems that make up each individual are coordinating their activities. We foresee that an immediate step in this field will be the analysis of coordinated actions amongst several systems in the body. A few studies have already appeared evaluating the coordination between cardiac and nervous activity, as well as cardio-respiratory coupling, but these areas are still growing and in need for development. These studies face the challenge of uncovering statistical interdependence between recordings of very different nature. The invited speakers have recently contributed to the development of quantitative methods for the analysis of physiological records that are instrumental for these goals.


Thursday, March 8,2012
8:45-9:00 Coffee and Onsite Registration
9:00-9:15 Introductory comments.
9:15-10:05 Michael Rosenblum
(Dept. of Physics and Astronomy, Potsdam University)
Reconstructing Effective Phase Connectivity of Oscillator Networks
10:15-11:05 Roberto Fernández Galán
(Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland)
What brain rhythms reveal about functional brain connectivity
11:15-11:45 Break
11:45-12:35 Randall McIntosh
(Rotman Research Institute, Baycrest Centre, Toronto)
Cognition = Networks and noise
12:45-14:00 Lunch Break
14:00-14:50 Viktor Jirsa
(Theoretical Neuroscience Group, Université de la Méditerranée, Marseille)
On the dynamics of epileptic seizures
15:00-15:50 Ramon Guevara Erra
(INSERM-CEA Cognitive Neuroimaging Unit (UNICOG), Neurospin, Saclay, France )
Extracting functional connectivity from brain signals: the stochastic approach
15:50-16:00 Break
16:00-16:50 Wojciech Kostelecki
(The Hospital for Sick Children)
Approaches to causal analysis in neuroimaging
Friday, March 9,2012
9:15-9:30 Coffee
9:30 - 10:20 Sam Doesburg
(The Hospital for Sick Children)
Network synchronization dynamics in cognition, development and clinical child populations
10:30 - 11:20 Andrew Seely
(Clinical Epidemiology Programme, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute)
Development and Understanding of Multiorgan Variability Monitoring - Potential Pitfalls & Future Potential
11:20-11:30 Break
11:30 - 12:20 Sui Huang
(Institute for Biocomplexity and Informatics, University of Calgary, Canada)
Coordinated activity between genes and between cells: From Gene Networks to Attractors, Cell Population Dynamics and Cancer
12:30 - 14:30 Lunch break
14:30-14:20 Vladimir Ponomarenko
(Institute of Radioengineering and Electronics of Russian Academy of Sciences):
Synchronization between rhythmic processes in the cardiovascular system
15:30- 16:20 Mikhail Prokhorov
(Institute of Radioengineering and Electronics of Russian Academy of Sciences):
Synchronization of low-frequency oscillations in the cardiovascular system: Application to medical diagnostics and treatment
16:20-16:30 Break
16:30-17:20 Der Chyan Lin (Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, Ryerson University):
Central-autonomic interaction underlying the multifractal fluctuation in human heart rate variability - evidence of an arousal factor
17:20- 17:50 Discussion

Final Participant List-- March 9, 2012

Full Name University/Affiliation
Anderson, Ryan The Hospital for Sick Children
Berman, Marc Rotman Research Institute
Bezgin, Gleb Rotman Research Institute
Brown, Tanya Rotman Research Institute
Cheyne, Douglas The Hospital for Sick Children
Colic, Sinisa University of Toronto
Cortez, Miguel Hospital for Sick Children
Dian, Josh University of Toronto
Doesburg, Sam The Hospital for Sick Children
Ehsani, Sepehr University of Toronto
Fatima, Zainab University of Toronto
Ferguson, Katie University of Toronto/Toronto Western Research Institute
Fernández Galán, Roberto Case Western Reserve University
Florez, Carlos Toronto Western Hospital
Guevara Erra, Ramón Basque Center on Cognition, Brain and Language
Heisz, Jennifer The Rotman Research Institute
Huang, Sui University of Calgary
Ito, Ernest University Health Network
Jirsa, Viktor Université de la Méditerranée
Kostelecki, Wojciech Hospital for Sick Children
Lin, Der Chyan Ryerson University
Marwa, Ibrahim Toronto Western Hospital
McCormick, Cornelia Krembil Neuroscience Center
McGinn, Ryan University of Toronto
McIntosh, Randall Rotman Research Institute, Baycrest Centre
Misic, Bratislav Rotman Research Institute
Nenadovic, Vera Toronto Hospital for Sick Kids
Perez Velazquez, Jose Luis The Hospital for Sick Children
Ponomarenko, Vladimir Russian Academy of Sciences
Prokhorov, Mikhail Russian Academy of Sciences
Quraan, Maher Toronto Western Hospital
Rosenblum, Michael Potsdam University
Seely, Andrew University of Ottawa
Sekulic, Vladislav University of Toronto
Shen, Kelly Rotman Research Institute
Skinner, Frances K. Toronto Western Research Insitute, UHN, U of Toronto
Sugumar, Sonia Toronto Western Hospital
Tinker, Jesse  
Tipu, Vicentiu The Hospital for Sick Children
Vakorin, Vasily Rotman Reaserch Institute, Baycrest Centre
Wang, Hongye Rotman Research Institute at Baycrest
Wilcox, Marianne University of Guelph
Yalnizyan-Capson, Annik University of Toronto
Yourganov, Grigori Rotman Research Institute
Zamir, Mair Univesity of Western Ontario
Zeyl, Tim University of Toronto

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