Neuroscience/Neuropsychology question

Gary G. Wilson ggw5 at columbia.edu
Fri Jun 9 13:30:20 EST 2000

Very true but you never know where you're going to go with research.
Regardless of this, I would not let a lack of mathematical background put
anyone off a neurobiology career path.  I, for one, had no background in 
maths since the age of 16 in the UK comprehensive school system.  Despite 
this poor start, I manage to muddle my way through theoretical biophysics
adequately enough.

On Fri, 9 Jun 2000, Richard Norman wrote:

> Of course there is always major work that really needs a good
> math/biophysics background.  But where do you get students for
> that type of thing?  I'll bet they transferred from math/physics/
> engineering undergraduate programs.
> And what do you advise a biology or psych undergraduate who
> doesn't have that background?  Most areas in neurobiology do
> not involve that type of mathematics and these students shouldn't
> be discouraged from continuing nor steered into an inappropriate
> course program.
> Gary G. Wilson <ggw5 at columbia.edu> wrote in message
> news:Pine.GSO.4.10.10006091043270.8933-100000 at merhaba.cc.columbia.edu...
> > On Fri, 9 Jun 2000, Richard Norman wrote:
> >
> > > at one time it was traditional to go through the Hodgkin-Huxley
> > > equations, discussing the significance of the m,n, and h terms.
> > > To understand that work, you really had to know at least a little
> > > about differential equations. Now all that is completely bypassed
> > > in favor of looking at the molecular structure of the gated ion
> > > channels and finding motifs and homologies in the membrane-
> > > spanning regions and gate controls.
> >
> > This is true to some extent but it seems to me that more of the
> > groundbreaking work these days involves the mathematics again.  Where
> > molecular mechanisms were once vaguely described, now we seek to tie them
> > down with mathematical theory. Ion channel electrostatics and how they
> > relate to molecular structure is one example.
> >
> > Gary G Wilson
> > Center for Molecular Recognition
> > Columbia University
> >

Gary G Wilson
Center for Molecular Recognition
Columbia University

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