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Hyperbolic geometry in biological networks

[Moved Online] Hot Topics: Topological Insights in Neuroscience May 04, 2021 - May 11, 2021

May 05, 2021 (09:00 AM PDT - 09:45 AM PDT)
Speaker(s): Tatyana Sharpee (The Salk Institute for Biological Studies)
Location: MSRI: Online/Virtual
  • olfaction

  • Simplicial Complexes

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Hyperbolic Geometry in Biological Networks


Using the sense of smell as an example, I will describe both theoretical reasons and experimental evidence that natural stimuli and human perception can be mapped onto a low dimensional curved surface. This surface turns out to have a negative curvature, corresponding to a hyperbolic metric. Although this map was derived purely from the statistics of co-occurrence between mono-molecular odorants in the natural environment it revealed topography in the organization of human perception of smell. I will conclude with arguments for why hyperbolic metric can be useful for other sensory systems.

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Hyperbolic Geometry in Biological Networks

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