Eric Lowet, Ph.D.

Behavioral and Systems Neuroscience

Hello! I’m Eric Lowet, an assistant professor in the Neuroscience department at Erasmus MC in Rotterdam. Previously, I have been a postdoc fellow at Boston University (Han lab, 2019-2023, Chen lab, 2017-2019) and postdoc at MIT (Desimone lab, 2016-2017) . I defended my PhD 2016 (Maastricht University/Donders Institute, DeWeerd lab).

My key mission is to decipher how neurons communicate and organize during behavior. Using novel cellular imaging techniques I see the neurons ’speak‘ with millisecond time-scale resolution.

Neural circuits in brain diseases exhibit disturbed communication patterns. Understanding how to actively interfere with the brain to alleviate and restore normal neural communication is the ultimate dream.

Current Research

Here I explain cellular voltage imaging in more detail

Voltage imaging of single and complex spiking in the hippocampus of behaving mice

Optical access to neurons in vivo. Hippocampus is critical for navigation and memory. Using novel high-speed fluorescence imaging, I study how neurons dynamically coordinate and transmit information in behaving mic
Example of single CA1 neuron membrane voltage trace measured with somArchon high-speed microscopy.  Fluorescent voltage imaging allows to record spikes and subthreshold membrane potentials of multiple cells in awake animals.


Cellular effects of Deep brain stimulation (DBS) using voltage imaging

DBS is a promising neuromodulation technique to treat brain disorders. While DBS has been applied for several decades in patients and proven to be effective for epilepsy, Parkinson’s, dystonia or depression, the underlying therapeutic mechanisms remain largely unknown. Direct experimental testing of the DBS neural effects in awake brain has been challenging due to electrical interference on electrophysiology-based recordings.

Cellular voltage imaging allows to record the electrical neural activity optically and thereby to examine the neural effects of DBS without any electrical interference.

Cellular SomArchon fluorescence voltage imaging enables artifact-free neural recordings during DBS(a). Schematic representation of a recorded CA1 neuron in the electric field generated by the electrode . Scale bar 500µm. (b). Example SomArchon fluorescence before, during, and after 40Hz DBS. Scale bar, 15µm. (c). Same as c, but for 140Hz DBS.   Adapted from Lowet al. (2022).
Combining DBS, voltage imaging, and optogenetics to assess neuron’s information transfer ability (a). Illustration of simultaneous somatic CoChR-evoked membrane depolarization and SomArchon voltage imaging during DBS. (b, c). An example CA1 neuron’s SomArchon fluorescence trace (black) and spikes (black ticks) during 8Hz CoChR activation (blue line) and 40Hz DBS (gold line). Zoom-in view (c) of the periods indicated by the dashed lines in (b), during the baseline (i) and the DBS period (ii). Adapted from Lowet al. (2022).

Key publications:

S.Shroff*, E.Lowet*,… ,X.Han (2023). „Striatal cholinergic interneuron membrane voltage tracks locomotor rhythms in mice.“ Nature Communications

E.Lowet, … ,X.Han. (2022). “Deep Brain Stimulation Creates Information Lesion through Membrane Depolarization.” Nature Communications

E.Lowet, … ,X.Han. (2022). “Single and Complex Spikes Relay Distinct Frequency-Dependent Circuit Information in the Hippocampus.” BioRxiv, April, 2022.04.06.487256.

S.Xiao*, E.Lowet*, H.Gritton*…X.Han (2021) .Large-scale voltage imaging in behaving mice using targeted illumination. Iscience
C.Conylis*, E.Lowet*, …J.Chen (2020) .Context-Dependent Sensory Processing across Primary and Secondary Somatosensory Cortex.Neuron
E.Lowet.,  …R.Desimone (2018) .Enhanced neural processing by covert attention only during microsaccades towards attended stimulus.Neuron
E.Lowet.,  …P. De Weerd (2017) .A quantitative theory of gamma synchronization in macaque V1. eLife

Full list of publications: