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  • SPIE Launching Neurophotonics Journal in 2014
Oct 2013
BELLINGHAM, Wash., Oct. 31, 2013 — SPIE is launching the peer-reviewed journal Neurophotonics under Editor-in-Chief David Boas of Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), the society said this week. The new journal will focus on novel optical technologies for imaging and manipulation of brain structure and function.

The quarterly journal will cover optical technologies and methods driving profound advances in understanding brain phenomena, such as electrical excitability, neuroglial partnership, neurovascular signaling, metabolic activity, and hemodynamics in health and disease, SPIE said. All articles will be freely available during the first year.

"As advanced optical methods are driving a revolution in the neurosciences that will persist for decades to come, I am delighted that SPIE is starting Neurophotonics," said Boas of the Athinoula A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging at MGH, the teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School. "The journal will provide a highly visible focal point to facilitate and accelerate the rapidly expanding impact of this discipline."

A key goal of the journal, Boas said, will be to foster greater awareness and interaction among the photonics, neuroscience and clinical communities.

The SPIE Journal of Biomedical Optics has included papers covering neurophotonics since it launched in 1996. Its editor-in-chief, Lihong Wang of Washington University in St. Louis, said that the rapid growth and interest in the field has created a distinct need for a spinoff journal focused solely on the application of photonics technology and techniques in brain research.

"I view Neurophotonics as a companion journal and applaud SPIE's commitment to the biomedical community," Wang said. "I also expect this new journal to serve as an interdisciplinary platform for both optical engineers and neuroscientists."

"The use of optics and photonics by the scientific and medical community to deepen our understanding of brain function and dysfunction is an exciting development for our community," said 2013 SPIE President Bill Arnold. "Photonics is having an incredibly important impact in medicine and health care. SPIE is pleased to focus even more attention on this exciting field with new conference programs on neurophotonics and optogenetics and now a dedicated neurophotonics journal."

Among the topics the journal will cover are the following: optogenetics and other optical methods of manipulating cellular behavior, photoacoustic methods spanning from optical to acoustic resolution, and superresolution nanoscopic methods.

Authors are invited to submit articles beginning Nov. 30, with publication to begin in early 2014, SPIE said.

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Pertaining to optics and the phenomena of light.
A discipline that combines optics and genetics to enable the use of light to stimulate and control cells in living tissue, typically neurons, which have been genetically modified to respond to light. Only the cells that have been modified to include light-sensitive proteins will be under control of the light. The ability to selectively target cells gives researchers precise control. Using light to control the excitation, inhibition and signaling pathways of specific cells or groups of cells...
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