Diego Mendoza-Halliday

Research Scientist

Email: mendoz@mit.edu
Phone: 617-324-5265

Ph.D., Neurophysiology, McGill University, Canada
M.S., Behavioral Neuroscience, McGill University, Canada
Visual information constantly floods our visual system, yet only a small percentage is relevant to us at each moment. Our brains are capable of filtering out irrelevant information and preferentially processing relevant information, a process known as attention. Of the visual information we attend, a percentage of it remains behaviorally relevant after it is no longer available to the senses. Our brains are capable of retaining this information for subsequent use in cognition and behavior, a process known as working memory. My research uses high-end electrophysiological and optogenetic techniques in non-human primates to examine the brain’s mechanisms underlying visual attention, working memory, and their interaction, at the level of individual neurons, neuronal ensembles, and across multiple brain areas.

A complete list of publications is available at https://scholar.google.com/citations?user=DwVP5NMAAAAJ&hl=en
Selected Publications:
* Equally-contributing co-first authors
 Mendoza-Halliday, D., Torres, S., Martinez-Trujillo, J.C. (2014). Sharp emergence of feature-selective sustained activity along the dorsal visual pathway. Nature Neuroscience 17 (9), 1255. [LINK]
 Mendoza-Halliday, D., Martinez-Trujillo, J.C. (2017). Neuronal population coding of perceived and memorized visual features in the lateral prefrontal cortex. Nature Communications 8, 15471[LINK]
Gong, X.*, Mendoza-Halliday, D.*, Ting, J.T.*, Kaiser, T., Sun, X., Bastos, A.M., Wimmer, R.D., Guo, B., Chen, Q., Zhou, Y., Pruner, M., Wu, C., Park, D., Deisseroth, K., Barak, B., Boyden, E.S., Miller, E.K., Halassa, M.M., Fu, Z., Bi, G., Desimone, R., Feng, G. (2020). An ultra-sensitive step-function opsin for minimally invasive optogenetic stimulation in mice and macaques. Neuron 107 (1), 38-51. [LINK]
Leavitt, M.L., Mendoza-Halliday, D., Martinez-Trujillo J.C. (2017). Sustained activity encoding working memories: not fully distributed. Trends in Neurosciences 40 (6), 328-346. [LINK]
 Tremblay S., … Mendoza-Halliday, D., … et al. (2020). An open resource for non-human primate optogenetics. Neuron 108 (6), 1075-1090. [LINK]
 Mendoza, D., Schneiderman, M., Kaul, C., Martinez-Trujillo, J. (2011). Combined effects of feature-based working memory and feature-based attention on the perception of visual motion direction. Journal of Vision 11(1):11. [LINK]
 Torres-Gomez, S., Blonde, J.D., Mendoza-Halliday, D., Kuebler, E., Everest, M., Wang, X.J., Inoue, W., Poulter, M.O., Martinez-Trujillo, J.C. (2020). Changes in the proportion of inhibitory interneuron types from sensory to executive areas of the primate neocortex: Implications for the origins of working memory representations. Cerebral Cortex 30 (8), 4544-4562. [LINK]
 Roussy, M., Mendoza-Halliday, D., Martinez-Trujillo, J.C. (in Press). Neural substrates of visual perception and working memory: two sides of the same coin or two different coins? Frontiers in Neural Circuits.
 Mendoza-Halliday, D., Torres, S., Martinez-Trujillo, J.C. (2015). Working memory representations of visual motion along the primate dorsal visual pathway. In Mechanisms of Sensory Working Memory: Attention and Performance XXV.
 Malek, N., Mendoza-Halliday, D., Martinez-Trujillo, J. (2012). Binocular rivalry of spiral and linear moving random dot patterns in human observers. Journal of Vision 12(10):16. [LINK]