Current Students

Biomathematics Ph.D. Program



Paheli Desai-Chowdhry
Entered program in 2018
My research interests center around mathematical modeling in neuroscience. I am working with Professor Van Savage on building a unifying biophysical model to understand how nerve cell structure, morphology, and branching patterns relate to their various functional roles in the brain and body. This model illustrates how the tradeoff between different functional roles leads to the diversity of structural properties observed across cell types. I am analyzing 3D image data of neurons and glial cells from species ranging in size from insects and rodents to elephants and whales, extracting quantitative morphological properties and comparing empirical results to theoretical predictions to validate the model. I am currently working on refining my original model to include details that more accurately represent essential properties of biological neurons.