BSBE Faculty

Arjun Ramakrishnan

Assistant Professor (Joining Dec 2019)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Academic Background:

Dr. Arjun Ramakrishnan will join the BSBE department at IIT Kanpur in December 2019. He trained as a Research Associate in the Platt Lab at the department of Neuroscience at the University of Pennsylvania, USA. Prior to this (2012-15), he was a postdoctoral associate in the Nicolelis Lab at Center for Neuroengineering, Duke University, USA. He holds a Ph.D. in Neuroscience from the National Brain Research Centre, Gurgoan, India and a Bachelor of Engineering in Telecommunications from BMS College of Engineering, Bangalore, India.

 

Research Interests:

Daniel Wolpert famously remarked that brains exist only for one reason -- and that is to move and interact with the world around us! Taking that quite seriously, Dr. Arjun Ramakrishnan has developed an interest in understanding, not only how the brain enables the phenomenological experience but also implements the behavioral response to it. In other words, how do we – or our brains – factor in information to enable decisions to act on the world around us? His research program at IITK will employ a three-pronged approach, to this end:

1. To study the basic neural mechanisms underlying decision making.

2. To unravel the neural mechanisms underlying the influence of reward, arousal and/or stress on the decision-making process.

3. To determine biomarkers of suboptimal decision making to assess and monitor brain states that are indicative of -- and precursor to – mental health conditions like anxiety and depression.
 
The program will apply a comparative approach by studying humans and nonhuman primates, utilize a multitude of techniques -- including EEG, eye tracking, pupillometry, heart rate and skin conductance measures in human participants; multichannel neurophysiology, eye tracking, pupillometry and intracortical microstimulation (ICMS) in nonhuman primates and attempt to merge ideas from neuroscience, psychology, ethology, statistics and economics to yield novel insights on the neural mechanisms underlying the decision-making process.



Dr. Arjun Ramakrishnan is the co-founder of Cogwear Technologies, a Penn-Wharton-based neuroscience startup that enables measurement of human experience in real time using custom made, high quality, wearable, nanowire EEG sensors. As a scientific advisor of Neuroflow, a digital healthcare startup, he is developing novel algorithms by leveraging biometric data to provide insights in real time on physiological and mental states.