Miura's most recent accomplishments have been to develop mathematical models in neuroscience for cell dynamics. Earlier in his career, he solved the Korteweg-de Vries equation with mathematicians from the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory.
"In contrast to the past century of successes in understanding the mechanisms responsible for physical phenomena," said Miura, "the complexity of biological phenomena and the synergy of mechanisms responsible for these phenomena have made the understanding of biological systems much more difficult. Mathematical modeling isolates and quantifies each mechanism and its contribution. The importance and ability of mathematical modeling to tease out these separate mechanisms is still not fully appreciated by most biological and biomedical scientists."
Miura works with biologists to help them better understand how and why a type of depressed brain activity induced in animals spreads as a slow, pathological wave. Researchers, who study this wave, call it "spreading cortical depression." The research is intended to help people who experience a related disease, better known as a spontaneous migraine headache. Such headaches are preceded by an odd visual pattern of light, called an aura, which disappears and about a half hour later is followed by the onset of migraine, which can last up to 48 hours.
"Spreading depression was discovered some 60 years ago by a Brazilian neuro-physiologist A. A. Leao, who was studying epilepsy." said Miura, "Yet today, little is known about these ch
Contact: Sheryl Weinstein
New Jersey Institute of Technology