Dr. de la Rocha receives 2 million euros from the ERC for the study of neural mechanisms

Dr. Jaime de la Rocha, head of Cortical Circuit Dynamics research group at IDIBAPS, will receive €2 million over the next five years to strengthen his research on neuronal circuit mechanisms. These funds come from the European Research Council (ERC), which has published the Consolidator grants for 302 top researchers in Europe. This is the first time IDIBAPS receives one of this prestigious ERC grants.

The group led by Dr. de la Rocha at IDIBAPS focuses on the study of the neuronal circuit mechanisms underlying cognitive functions such as perception, decision making and memory. For this purpose they train rats and mice to perform simple perceptual discrimination tasks and try to characterize variables that determine their behaviour. The aim is to determine brain areas where these variables are represented as well as the detailed circuit dynamics underlying their processing. This particular grant   will help to study neural circuit dynamics involved in generating expectations and their impact on decision making. Moreover, this methodology will be applied in understanding the mechanisms underlying some cognitive impairments characteristic of neural disorders such as anti-NMDAR encephalitis or schizophrenia.

As reported by ERC, 2,051 proposals have been submitted in this call and the success rate is around 15 %. Researchers from Spanish institutions have received 18 grants, 4 of which are Life Sciences-related and Dr. de la Rocha’s grant belongs to these ones.

About the ERC Consolidator programme

The ERC Consolidator Grant are awarded to outstanding researchers of any nationality and age, with at least seven and up to twelve years of experience after completing their PhD, and a scientific track record showing great promise. Research must be conducted in a public or private research organisation located in one of the EU Member States or Associated Countries. The funding,maximum of €2 million per grant, is provided for up to five years.

More information

Link to the list of all selected researchers who have recieved an ERC Consolidator Grant.