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Photo of Youping Xiao

Youping Xiao, PhD

Associate Professor

Tel: (718) 270-3900


Background and Expertise:

Dr. Xiao got his PhD degree from Graduate School of Biomedical Science, University of Texas-Health Science Center at Houston where he also performed his postdoctoral training. After a second postdoctoral training at Weill Cornell Medical College, Dr. Xiao became a faculty member at Mount Sinai School of Medicine until joining SUNY Downstate in 2013. His research on cortical mechanism of vision has clinical implications in loss of normal vision due to impaired visual cortex, visual prosthesis, etc. His current study on the cortical processing of color information is supported by NEI-NIH grant award. Dr. Xiao has published on highly reputable journals, and served as a reviewer for some of them. He is also an ad hoc reviewer for NIH and NSF grants./p>

Research Interests:

The primate visual system is composed of more than 30 cortical areas and sub-cortical structures. Each cortical area and sub-cortical structure in turn comprises multiple layers. It is one of the most challenging questions in neuroscience that how this multi-stage system processes information received by the eyes and produces our visual perception. Dr. Xiao's laboratory tackles this question by studying the neural mechanism of color vision. With training in both electronics and neuroscience, he has been studying the primate visual cortex by combining neurobiological and computational approaches.

His previous work with optical imaging of intrinsic signal found that color is represented by spatially organized maps in visual areas V1 and V2. Within each of these hue maps, different colors activate overlapping but spatially shifted regions, and the spatial shift is correlated with perceptual shift of the stimuli. These hue maps are likely the origin of hue maps in higher visual areas where electrical stimulation elicits the precept of specific colors. Using multi-channel electrode recoding system and information-theory based analysis, Dr. Xiao's lab is currently addressing how the multi-layer circuit in V1 constructs the color maps, what features are added to color maps in V2 relative to those in V1, and how the addition or refinery is accomplished by the circuit in V2. Answers to these questions are critical for the understanding of function of different areas and layers, which in turn is important for diagnosis and treatment of cortical deficits and the development of neural prosthesis. In addition, his lab is developing cortical visual prosthesis with optogenetics. This novel approach has enormous therapeutic potential for blind patients, especially those without a functioning retina.

Research Topics:
  • Neural circuitry of visual cortex
  • Visual prosthesis
  • Processing of information, especially color information, by primate visual system
  • Function of connections between various parts of visual system
  • Advanced techniques of brain image analysis
Selected Publications
  • Felleman DJ, Lim H, Xiao Y, Wang Y, Eriksson A, and Parajuli A. The representation of orientation in macaque V2: Four stripes not three. Cerebral Cortex, 2014/03/13,[Epub ahead of print]
  • Xiao Y Hierarchy of hue maps in the primate visual cortex. J Ophthalmic Vis Res 9:144-147, 2014.
  • Xiao Y (2013) Processing of S-cone signals in the early visual cortex of primates. Visual Neuroscience. 2013 Aug 13:1-7. [Epub ahead of print].
  • Rao R, Xiao Y (2012). A computational model of early visual cortex using konio-cellular pathway projections. Proceedings of International Joint Conference of Neural Network 2012.
  • Xiao Y, Kavanau C, Bertin L, Kaplan E. The biological basis of a universal constraint on color naming: cone contrasts and the two-way categorization of colors. PloS one 2011; 6(9).
  • Cecchi GA, Rao AR, Xiao Y, Kaplan E. Statistics of natural scenes and cortical color processing. Journal of vision 2010; 10(11).
  • Babadi B, Casti A, Xiao Y, Kaplan E, Paninski L. A generalized linear model of the impact of direct and indirect inputs to the lateral geniculate nucleus. Journal of vision 2010; 10(10).
  • Lim H*, Wang Y*, Xiao Y*, Hu M, Felleman DJ. Organization of hue selectivity in macaque V2 thin stripes. Journal of Neurophysiology 2009 Nov; 102(5). *, equal contributors.
  • Xiao Y, Rao R, Cecchi G, Kaplan E. Improved mapping of information distribution across the cortical surface with the Support Vector Machine. Neural Network 2008; 21(2-3).
  • Casti A, Hayot F, Xiao Y, Kaplan E. A simple model of retina-LGN transmission. The JOURNAL OF COMPUTATIONAL NEUROSCIENCE 2008; 24(2).
  • Xiao Y, Rao R, Cecchi G, Kaplan E. Cortical representation of information about visual attributes: one network or many?. Proceedings of International Joint Conference of Neural Network 2007;.
  • Xiao Y, Casti A, Xiao J, Kaplan E. Hue maps in primate striate cortex. NeuroImage 2007; 35: 771-786.
  • Wang Y, Xiao Y, Felleman DJ. V2 Thin Stripes Contain Spatially Organized Representations of Achromatic Luminance Change. Cerebral Cortex 2007; 17(1).
  • Xiao Y, Felleman DJ. Projections from Primary Visual Cortex to Cytochrome Oxidase Thin Stripes and Interstripes of Macaque Visual Area 2. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 2004; 101.
  • Xiao Y, Wang Y, Felleman DJ. A spatially organized representation of color in macaque area V2. Nature 2003; 421.
  • Xiao Y, Felleman Dj. Segregation and convergence of projections from functionally identified V2 stripes to V4 in Macaques. Cerebral Cortex 1999; 9.
  • Felleman DJ, Xiao Y, McClendon E. Modular organization of occipito-temporal pathway: cortical connections between visual area 4 and visual area 2 and posterior inferotemporal ventral area in macaque monkeys. The Journal of Neuroscience 1997; 17.

Books and Book Chapters
  • Xiao Y, Kaplan E. Information about color and orientation in the primate visual cortex. In: Rao R, Cecchi G, editors. High Throughput Image Analysis and Reconstruction. 2009, Artech House Publishing.