UCL Division of Biosciences


"Big Eyes and Tiny Brains" join CDB's Dr Vilaiwan Fernandes at the Bloomsbury Festival

15 September 2021

Dr Fernandes will be giving a presentation at the Bloomsbury Festival on October 23rd at 2:30pm titled, "Big Eyes and Tiny Brains: Understanding motion detection through the eyes of a fly." Her presentation is part of this year's festival theme 'Shining light'.

image of a fly head

Whether you’re watching shooting stars on a warm summer night or engaged in a first-person videogame of Grand Theft Auto, your visual system is capturing and processing information about colours, contrasts, spots of light and dark, and perhaps most importantly – of motion, or the time-varying positions of various objects in space. How is motion detected and encoded by the cells in your visual system? What is the simplest circuit needed to perceive motion?

Dr Vilaiwan Fernandes is a developmental neurobiologist at University College London. Her lab uses fruit flies (which like us have high-acuity vision) to study how maps of visual space are represented in the visual system during development. She will present a short lecture on motion vision, including theoretical models of motion detection and how studies in fruit flies have helped test and validate this theory.

The talk is open to all and aimed at a general audience. Tickets are free but pre-booking is essential. For more info and to book your tickets visit https://bloomsburyfestival.org.uk/events/big-eyes-and-tiny-brains/