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Personal profile


Emma Wood graduated with a 1st class Honours degree in Psychology from the University of St Andrews before going to Canada on a Commonwealth Scholarship to complete her PhD in Neuroscience at the University of British Columbia. She then spent 6 years in the USA as a postdoc - first in the lab of Janis Weeks at the University of Oregon, studying neural mechanisms of non-associative learning in the caterpillar Manduca sexta, and next in the lab of Howard Eichenbaum at Boston University,investigating how hippocampal place cells contribute to memory. She was recruited to a Lectureship in Neuroscience at the University of Edinburgh in 1999, and now holds a Personal Chair in Behavioural Neuroscience in the Centre for Discovery Brain Sciences and Simons Foundation for the Developing Brain at the University of Edinburgh.

My research in a nutshell

To be added

Current Research Interests

Neural circuit mechanisms of spatial cognition and memory

  • Understanding the role of head direction cells in spatial cognition, and their contribution to the spatial activity of place, grid and boundary cells
  • Dissecting the neural circuitry for landmark memory (focusing on specific entorhinal-hippocampal circuits)
  • Understanding the contributions of medial and lateral entorhinal cortex to memory, spatial cognition, and to hippocampal codes
  • Understanding the neural circuitry that supports episodic memory, and how it changes during postnatal development

Translational Research

  • Behavioural and circuit-level characterisation of rat models of intellectual disability and autism spectrum disorders (e.g. Fragile X Syndrome)
  • Prevention/reversal of behavioural and circuit-based deficits in rat models of intellectual disability and autism spectrum disorders



My core teaching is to Biomedial Sciences and Medical Sciences undergraduate students, with a focus on Neuroscience, and to postgraduate students on the MSc Integrative Neuroscience programme.

Current Undergraduate teaching: Neuroscience 3, Neural Circuits for Learning and Memory (Hons elective), supervision of Honours projects.

Current Postgraduate teaching: MSc Integrative Neuroscience, supervision of MSc projects.



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