RIT to Host Talk by Neurobiologist Donald Pfaff April 24

Discovering human decision process through understanding the brain is the lecture focus




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The College of Science at Rochester Institute of Technology is diving deep into the gray matter to understand human behavior. Professor Donald Pfaff will speak on “The Brain’s Control of Behavior” at 1 p.m. Friday, April 24, in VanPeursem Auditorium, located in RIT’s Gosnell Building.

Pfaff is professor and head of the Laboratory of Neurobiology and Behavior at Rockefeller University. He discovered the connections between specific brain circuits, brain hormones and certain behaviors. Brain hormones influence moral behaviors in areas such as self-sacrifice, parental love, friendship and violent aggression.

Pfaff plans to cover three main areas in his lecture. First, he will explain mechanisms–sex behavior used by lab animals to reproduce. Second, he will cover the abstract concept of waking up the entire brain. Third, he will cover how humans manage to behave ethically and morally towards each other.

Pfaff will be speaking as part of the John Wiley Jones Distinguished Lectureship in Science series. Started in 1974, the series is an annual event that brings in prominent and noteworthy individuals from all parts of the scientific realm.

This event is free and open to the public. For more information, visit www.rit.edu/cos/DistinguishedSpeaker.php.