- Assistant Professor of Anatomy and Neurobiology
My love of the outdoors and nature evolved into an interest in how living things make their way in the world and have evolved. My undergraduate work was at a small liberal arts college in Colorado, where I received a degree in general biology. As a graduate student in Washington, I focused on the most complicated of living things—the brain. There I began using electrophysiological techniques. These methods have revolutionized our understanding of neurons and allow us to observe the tiny electrical signals they use to communicate with each other. I continued to use these methods, as well as microscopy techniques, in my postdoctoral work in Texas, where I began to study the auditory system. I find this system particularly fascinating because unlike the retina in the visual system, our peripheral auditory senses have no intrinsic representation of space. The location of sound sources must be computed in the central auditory system from basic frequency, timing, and intensity information.
Area of Expertise/Research Interests
The ability to localize sounds is critical to survival for almost all animals and in humans facilitates selective attention. When this ability is impaired, reduced comprehension of speech in complicated auditory environments negatively affects quality of life. Understanding the functional roles of the cellular components of sound localization circuits and how they are sculpted by sound driven activity during development is a crucial step in understanding how the sound localization system might be disrupted and may underpin novel interventions to restore function for individuals with impairments. I study synaptic plasticity in sound localization circuits that weights the strength of the synaptic inputs from each ear. I also study how the morphology and ion channel composition of neuronal dendrites facilitate the difficult computations these circuits accomplish.
- Medical Neuroscience (Medical and Graduate Students)
- Cellular and Molecular Neurobiology (Graduate Students)
- Ph.D., Neuroscience, Washington State University, 2012
- B.S., Biology, Colorado Mesa University, 2008
- Winters BD, Golding NL. Glycinergic inhibitory plasticity in binaural neurons is cumulative and gated by developmental changes in action potential backpropagation. Neuron, 2018; 98, 1: 166-178.
- Winters BD, Jin SX, Ledford KR, Golding NL. Amplitude normalization of dendritic EPSPs at the soma of binaural coincidence detector neurons of the medial superior olive. The Journal of Neuroscience, 2017; 37, 12: 3138-3149.