Mufeng Tang

mufeng tang

E.P. Abraham Scholarship

DPhil Clinical Neurosciences (2021)

I obtained my undergraduate degree in Arts and Sciences at the University College London, with a focus on Science and Engineering. After that, I moved to the US for my master’s degree in Statistics at the University of Chicago, where I participated in several research projects in theoretical and computational neuroscience. Wishing to extend my interest in the mathematical modelling of brain computations, I decided to pursue my DPhil degree at the MRC Brain Network Dynamics Unit in Oxford.

My research lies at the intersection of neuroscience and artificial intelligence. Borrowing the power of AI, my research will attempt to build up mathematical models describing the underlying information processing and computational principles in the cerebral cortex. Using these models, I seek to investigate how neural circuits work in their healthy state, as well as how they malfunction in neurological disorders and the possible treatments for these disorders. Currently, I am using these mathematical models to investigate how memories are stored and retrieved in the hippocampus. These models will then be compared with experimental data recorded from the wet lab.

My goal is to continue researching in my current area, in academia or industry, to improve our understanding of the brain using mathematical tools, and to explore medical treatments for neurological disorders based on these models. I am therefore extremely grateful to St Cross College and all the donors for offering me the E.P. Abraham Scholarship in the Chemical, Biological/Life and Medical Sciences, which has made my DPhil research economically possible, and has undoubtedly encouraged and motivated me to pursue my future goals.

I decided to attend the University of Oxford because of the fascinating research activities here, as well as the academic atmosphere within a historical city. St Cross College was my first choice, as I was attracted by its diverse and welcoming group of graduate students from all over the world. I enjoy the social opportunities offered by the St Cross community, where I get to talk and exchange ideas with interesting people from a variety of backgrounds. I look forward to engaging in more such communications at the College and the University.