18 January 2017: The Cerebellum, Sensitive Periods, and Autism

Sam Wang
Princeton Neuroscience Institute
Princeton Universit

Although the cerebellum is mainly known as a sensory/motor structure, its influence and connections reach many regions known for cognitive function, emotion, and reward. I will present evidence for the idea that the cerebellum acts during sensitive periods to shape the developing brain. This hypothesis can explain a wide range of observations in autism, and may illuminate how the brain’s wiring is shaped by early-life sensory experience.