Dr Rolf Ypma, a research associate in the department of Psychiatry, has been awarded a prestigious Rubicon fellowship to study “The hereditary basis of autism investigated through matching brain networks”
Dr Ypma’s research looks at how the brain is wired. Together with Dr Mikail Rubinov and Prof Ed Bullmore, he uses neuroimaging data to statistically reconstruct the connections that different parts of the brain use to communicate with each other. He then captures the characteristics of this communication network in mathematical equations, and uses these to compare the brains of people with and without autism, with the aim to better understand the neural basis of this disorder. Previously, Rolf studied the spread of infectious diseases over social networks, which can be described by surprisingly similar mathematics.