Luskin Endowment for Thought Leadership Symposium – Pushing the Boundaries: Neuroscience, Cognition, and Life

June 26, 2023


Monday, June 26

Welcoming Remarks (9:00 am)
David Glanzman, Ph.D.
Department of Integrative Biology and Physiology
Department of Neurobiology
University of California, Los Angeles

Session 1: (9:10 am – 10:40 am)

“The Physics of Sentience”
Karl Friston, FMedSci, F.R.S.B., F.R.S.
Institute of Neurology, University College, London

Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging 

“Minimal Determinants of Cellular Cognition”
Jordi Garcia Ojalvo, Ph.D.
Department of Systems Biology
Universitat Pompeu Fabra

“Cellular Basis of Sentience and Cognition”
Frantisek Baluska, Ph.D.
Institute of Cellular and Molecular Botany
University of Bonn, Germany

Session 2: (11:05 am – 12:35 pm)

“Adaptive Behavior and Learning In Slime Molds”
Audrey Dussutour
Research Director
Centre for Philosophyof Science
University of Lisbon

“Learning andComputation In Single Cells”
Wallace Marshall 
Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics
University of California, San Francisco

“Computational Capabilities of Single Cells”
Aneta Koseska, Ph.D.
Lise Meitner Research Group Leader
Department of P. Bastiaens
Institute for Neurobiology and Behavior

Session 3: (2:05 pm – 3:25pm)

“Adapt or Die: Transgenerational Inheritance of Pathogen Avoidance (How Getting Food Poisoning Might Save Your Species)”
Coleen Murphy, Ph.D. 
Department of Molecular Biology
Princeton University

“Biological Embedding of Ancestral Life Experiences In the Epigenome”
Isabelle Mansuy, Ph.D.
Department of Neuroepigenetics 
Medical Faculty of the University Zürich 
Department of Health Science and Technology 
Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zürich 

“Learning From the History of Memory Transfer”
David Colaço, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Department of Mathematical Philosophy 
University of Munich, Germany 

Session 4: (4:00 pm – 6:00 pm)

“Decision Making Under Stress In Microbial Systems”
Allyson Sgro, Ph.D.
Adjunct Assistant Professor
Department of Biomedical Engineering
Boston University

“Principles of Neural Design, Without Neurons”
Pamela Lyon, Ph.D.
Research Fellow
Finders University  

“What is Fungal Behavior?”
Kristin Aleklett Kadish, Ph.D.
Department of Biology 
Lund University

“Understanding Cell Signal Perception and Misperception Using Optogenetic Probes”
Lukasz Bugaj, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Department of Bioengineering 
University of Pennsylvania 

Tuesday, June 27

Session 5: (9:00 am – 10:30 am)

“Semon’s Mneme: Tiers of Memory and Learning In Biological Systems”
Eva Jablonka, Ph.D.
Cohn Institute for the History of Philosophy of Science and Ideas
Tel Aviv University  

“Surprising Parallels between RNA Biology and Combinatory Logic”
Hessam Akhlaghpour
Postdoctoral Fellow
Laboratory of Integrative Brain Function 
Rockefeller University 

“Resource Constraints and the Evolution of Cognition”
Marta Halina
Associate Professor 
Department of History and Philosophy of Science 
University of Cambridge

Session 6: (11:00 am – 12:30 pm)

“Cell Learning: A New Paradigm For Biology
Jeremy Gunawardena, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Department ofSystems Biology 
Harvard Medical School

“Epistemogenesis: Knowledge Accumulation in Biological Systems”
Isabella Sarto-Jackson, Ph.D.
Konrad Lorenz Institute for Evolution and Cognition Research 

“How Biology Brings Cognition Into Evolution”
James Shapiro, Ph.D.
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
University of Chicago

Session 7: (2:05 pm – 4:00 pm)

“From Cells To Selves: Coupling Neuronal and Immune Cellular Processing In Biological Self Organizing Systems”
Anna Ciaunica, Ph.D.
Principal Investigator
Center for Philosophy of Science
Universityof Lisbon

“Possible and Actual Minds: Mapping the Cognition Space
Ricard Solé, Ph.D.
Research Professor
Complex Systems Lab
Universitat Pompeu Fabra

“Pushing the Boundaries By Dissolving Them: Toward a Scale-free Formalization of Physical Systems As Observers”
Chris Fields, Ph.D.
Independent Researcher

Session 8: (4:40 pm – 6:00 pm)

“Liquid Droplets As Simple Dynamic Systems To Explore Information and Cognition”
Martin Michael Hanczyc, Ph.D.
Principal Investigator 
Centre for Integrative Biology
University of Trento, Italy

“Embodied Cognition In Miniature Brains and Bodies of Marine Zooplankton”
Gaspar Jekely, Ph.D.
Department of Neuroscience
Living Systems Institute
University of Exeter

“Imagination: From Neural Computation To Molecular Computation”
Erik Winfree, Ph.D.
Department of Computer Science
Department of Computation and Neural Systems 
Department of Bioengineering
California Institute of Technology

“Memory and Intelligent Problem-Solving By Unconventional Collective Intelligences In Anatomical Morphospace”
Michael Levin, Ph.D.
Department of Biology 
Department of Biomedical Engineering 
Tufts Univeristy

Registration Required
Early Registration Deadline: May, 26, 2023
Standard Registration Deadline: June 20, 2023

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