Cell and Developmental Biology


Dr Caswell Barry

Dr Caswell Barry



Biosciences Division - Anatomy Building
UCL, Gower Street


  • Wellcome Senior Fellowship
    Cell & Developmental Biology
    Div of Biosciences

Joined UCL


What are you working on?

Well there are lots of answers to that question depending on how deep you want to go. Ultimately we’re trying to understand how the brain works - how it creates that experience of being human – but that’s a pretty big challenge. A more tractable question which is a step in the right direction is ‘how does the brain create, store, and update memories for places and events?’ and it’s this I’ve been working on. The way we’re trying to answer this is by studying areas of the brain linked to memory, the hippocampus and associated sections of cortex – by recording the activity of neurons in these areas we can visualise and hopefully understand the processes the trigger memory formation and retrieval. 

Award year Qualification Institution
2007 PhD
Doctor of Philosophy
University College London
2000 MSc
Master of Science
University College London
1999 BA
Bachelor of Arts
Biological Sciences
University of Oxford

Dr Caswell Barry joined UCL’s Cell and Developmental Biology department in 2013, previously being based at the Institute of Neurology with Prof. Neil Burgess. His goal is to build a computational understanding of the neural basis of memory. In other words, explaining how a network of neurons in able to store, update, and retrieve information about the world and events that happen within it.  To this end he studies spatial memory and its representation in the hippocampal formation. His lab uses tools such as computational modeling and optogenetic manipulations to understand how the processes of memory formation and retrieval are triggered. In addition to a UCL Excellence Fellowship, Caswell has also been awarded a Sir Henry Dale Fellowship funded by the Wellcome Trust and Royal Society.