Principal investigators

Yuji Ikegaya

Neuropharmacology, Optical Physiology, Psychophysics

Main Lab Location:

The University of Tokyo





Mailing Address:

7-3-1 Hongo Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-0033


yuji at


My research focuses on visual information processing and its latent plasticity.

Vision constitutes a large portion of human’s sensation and could involve different mechanisms between primates and other animals. I do visual research using mice and rats in the University-of-Tokyo lab and compensate an important part with human studies in my CiNeT lab.

At CiNET, I mainly use fMRI to reveal how the brain creates the internal representation about 3D and color vision in the low-level visual cortices. This aims to extrapolate my findings on visual cortical plasticity in rodents to the human brain. For example, I recently found simple, specific non-invasive methods can induce a long-lasting, specific alteration of visual responsiveness even after the critical period in mice (unpublished data). We are very interested to examine whether it is applicable to humans – pilot tests imply that it does work. Thus, this technique may be able to restore the lost (or weakened) visual ability in patients.

In near future, I would like to extend this “brain exploitation” project to other modalities, including non-innate abilities to sense geomagnetism, invisible light, and even other’s brain activity (i.e., direct brain-to-brain communication).

Selected Publications:

Takahashi, N., Kitamura, K., Matsuo, N., Mayford, M., Kano, M., Matsuki, N. and Ikegaya, Y. Locally synchronized synaptic inputs. Science, 335:353-356, 2012.

Sasaki, T., Matsuki, N. and Ikegaya, Y. Action-potential modulation during axonal conduction. Science, 311:599-601, 2011.

Ikegaya, Y., Aaron, G., Cossart, R., Aronov, D., Lampl, I., Ferster, D., and Yuste, R. Synfire chains and cortical songs: Temporal modules of cortical activity. Science, 304:559-564, 2004.

Short Biography:

1998-2006 Instructor at the University of Tokyo, Japan
2002-2005 Postdoctoral Researcher at Columbia University, USA
2006-2007 Lecturer at the University of Tokyo, Japan
2007-2014 Associate Professor at the University of Tokyo, Japan
2014-present Professor at the University of Tokyo, Japan

Announcements / News:
  • A post-doc position may be available in my CiNET lab. Please contact me for details.