Michael Merzenich Wins 2016 Kavli Prize in Neuroscience

For his pioneering research on plasticity, the brain’s remarkable capacity to modify its structure and function, UC San Francisco’s Michael M. Merzenich, PhD, has been awarded the 2016 Kavli Prize in Neuroscience. Merzenich, professor emeritus in the UCSF Department of Otolaryngology, shares the prize with Carla J. Shatz, PhD, professor of biology and neurobiology at Stanford University, and Eve Marder, PhD, professor of biology at Brandeis University. The trio received the prize, which carries a cash award of $1 million, “for the discovery of mechanisms that allow experience and neural activity to remodel brain function,” according to the Kavli Prize announcement, made Thursday. Beginning in the 1950s, neuroscientists had shown that the areas of the brain’s cortex devoted to sensory experience – noticing a touch on the skin, distinguishing objects…


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