Srini Turaga

Gatsby Computational Neuroscience Unit
Wolfson Institute for Biomedical Research
University College London

I am currently a joint postdoc at the Gatsby Unit and at the Hausser lab at University College London. And in December 2014, I will be starting as a group leader at Janelia.

Sebastian Seung supervised my PhD at MIT during which I developed machine learning methods for reconstructing the connectivity of neural circuits from 3d electron microscopic datasets. Led by Winfried Denk, we used these methods to map the connectivity ("contactivity") of the inner plexiform layer of the mouse retina. These methods are also the "AI" that power EyeWire, a citizen-science project led by Sebastian Seung, which uses crowd-sourcing to map a much larger volume of the mouse retina, also imaged by the Denk lab.

My current research lies at the intersection of computational neuroscience and machine learning. I work on on:

  • statistical tools for analyzing large-scale neural recordings
  • models relating neural connectivity to neural activity
  • machine learning algorithms for reconstructing connectomes from electron microscopic images
  • efficient large-scale machine learning algorithms based on deep neural networks and decision trees

I co-organized a workshop at NIPS 2013: Acquiring and analyzing the activity of large neural ensembles.

My CV [ pdf ]

Peer-reviewed papers [ google scholar | pubmed ]

NECO2202 Nature500
Journal covers featuring our research.

JS Kim, MJ Greene, A Zlateski, K Lee, M Richardson, SC Turaga, M Purcaro, M Balkam, A Robinson, BF Behabadi, M Campos, W Denk, HS Seung & the EyeWirers (2014). Space-time wiring specificity supports direction selectivity in the retina. Nature, 509: 331-336.
[ link | pdf ]

SC Turaga, L Buesing, AM Packer, H Dalgleish, N Petit, M Hausser, JH Macke (2013). Inferring neural population dynamics from multiple partial recordings of the same neural circuit. Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS) 2013.
[ pdf ]

M Helmstaedter, KL Briggman, SC Turaga, V Jain, HS Seung, W Denk (2013). Connectomic reconstruction of the inner plexiform layer in the mouse retina. Nature, 500: 168-174.
[ link | pdf | data, lots and lots of it! ]

News & Views
RH Masland (2013). Neuroscience: Accurate maps of visual circuitry. Nature, 500: 154-155.
[ link | pdf ]

V Jain, SC Turaga, KL Briggman, MN Helmstaedter, W Denk, HS Seung (2011). Learning to Agglomerate Superpixel Hierarchies. Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS) 2011.
[ pdf ]

V Jain, HS Seung, SC Turaga (2010). Machines that learn to segment images: a crucial technology of connectomics. Current Opinion in Neurobiology, 20(5): 653-666.
[ link | pdf ]

SC Turaga, KL Briggman, M Helmstaedter, W Denk, HS Seung (2009). Maximin learning of image segmentation. Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems (NIPS) 2009.
[ pdf ]

SC Turaga, JF Murray, V Jain, F Roth, M Helmstaedter, K Briggman, W Denk, HS Seung (2010). Convolutional networks can learn to generate affinity graphs for image segmentation. Neural Computation, 22: 511-538.
[ link | pdf ]

V Jain, JF Murray, F Roth, SC Turaga, V Zhigulin, KL Briggman, MN Helmstaedter, W Denk, HS Seung (2007). Supervised learning of image restoration with convolutional networks. IEEE International Conference on Computer Vision (ICCV) 2007.
[ pdf ]

BH Tracey, NL Lee, SC Turaga (2006). Cluster analysis and robust use of full-field models for sonar beamforming. J Acoust Soc Am, 120(5):2635-47.
[ link | pdf ]

BH Tracey, NL Lee, SC Turaga (2004). Statistical clustering applied to adaptive matched field processing. Proceedings of Advanced Sensor Array Processing (ASAP) Workshop, March 2004.
[ pdf ]

SC Turaga, and SM Auerbach (2003). Calculating Free Energies for Diffusion in Tight-Fitting Zeolite-Guest Systems: Local Normal-Mode Monte Carlo. J. Chem. Phys. 118: 6512-6517 (2003).
[ link | pdf ]

Select conference posters, tech reports & unpublished notes

R Schalek, N Kasthuri, K Hayworth, D Berger, J Tapia, J Morgan, S Turaga, E Fagerholm, H Seung, J Lichtman (2011). Development of High-Throughput, High-Resolution 3D Reconstruction of Large-Volume Biological Tissue Using Automated Tape Collection Ultramicrotomy and Scanning Electron Microscopy. Microscopy and Microanalysis, 2011.
[ link | pdf ]

SC Turaga, HS Seung (2011). Logarithmic-time multi-class prediction via metric embedding of classifiers. Learning Workshop, 2011.
[ pdf ]

SC Turaga, H Sompolinsky, HS Seung (2006). Online learning in a model neural integrator. Cosyne, March 2006.
[ poster | manuscript ]

SC Turaga (2003). Calculation of Ziv-Zakai bound on Mean Squared Error for Matched Field Processing. MIT Lincoln Laboratory Memo, August 2003.
[ pdf ]

Video lectures online

Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics, UC Santa Barbara, September 24, 2010
[ link ]


New York Times, May 26, 2014
Recruiting Help: Gamers

Boston Globe, May 4, 2014
MIT brain game leads to neural circuit, scientific paper

Nature News, May 4, 2014
Wiring of retina reveals how eyes sense motion: Online gamers helped researchers map neuron connections involved in detecting direction of moving objects.

The Atlantic, August 7, 2013
A Trip Through a 3D-Modeled Brain: See how a mouse's mind sees something.

Nature News, August 7, 2013
Visual neurons mapped in action: Researchers detail structure and workings of mouse and fruit fly retinal circuits.

MIT News, August 7, 2013
Making connections in the eye: Wiring diagram of retinal neurons is first step toward mapping the human brain.

MIT News, January 28, 2010
Mapping the brain: MIT scientists are making computers smart enough to see the connections between the brain's neurons

MIT Technology Review, November 19, 2007
A Wiring Diagram of the Brain: The emerging field of connectomics could help researchers decode the brain's approach to information processing.

Boston Globe, July 9, 2006 (yes, really)
Wi-Fi wars: Loiterers can be a drag on businesses' bottom line