Author: Samuel Barnes

Loneliness and the brain

Follow the link below to read my article on the British Geriatric Society (BGS) blog. I discuss how loneliness may impact neural plasticity. Very much looking forward to speaking at the associated event on the 13th of June.

Size-dependent dynamics

Rosie’s paper on persistent synaptic structures is published

Although central to many theories of sensory processing, persistent synapses remain understudied. We find visual deprivation collapses the distribution of bouton sizes toward the mean. Bouton plasticity is accompanied by a reduced range of correlated network activity and greater bidirectional plasticity. Thus, information stored in the distribution of synapse sizes may be lost but the system develops greater flexibility to reorganise as a consequence. Interestingly, this is a way to reorganise within limited space constraints.


Sammons, R.P., Clopath, C., and Barnes, S.J. (2018). Size-Dependent Axonal Bouton Dynamics following Visual Deprivation In Vivo. Cell Rep. 22, 576–584.