Issue 1—Spring 2021

Editor's Note

We are very excited to present the first ever issue of Grey Matters Columbia University. This issue is the culmination of months of planning and hard work—a team effort on the part of numerous writers, editors, and artists, as well as our Executive team. We want to take this opportunity to guide you through the issue so you can enjoy it to its greatest potential. 

Articles in this issue fall under one of four themes: Nurturing the Nervous System, Where Our Axons Meet, Mental Health and Neuropsychiatry, and Making Headway in Neuroscience. Each theme is intentionally broad, containing topics from a range of disciplines and an array of perspectives. 

Click the Spotify link above to access the podcast version of each article narrated by one of our own team members. Whether you are an auditory learner or just want to learn about neuroscience on your daily walk, we hope you will find this additional resource helpful. 

Grey Matters CU strives to be interdisciplinary, accessible, and inclusive, and we hope this issue sets a strong precedent for future publications from our organization. Yet, as neuroscience makes clear, there is always more to learn. If you have any feedback on our issue, please let us know at We're always striving to improve and we greatly value your input.

We are honored that you have decided to explore the first issue of Grey Matters CU. Our overarching goal is to make that enigmatic grey organ in our heads a little bit less mysterious, one topic at a time. We hope you will learn a thing or two about yourself and those around you in the process.



Rochelle Vayntrub


Production Staff:

Rochelle Vayntrub, Editor-in-Chief BC '22

Rebeccah Yeh, Senior Managing Editor BC '22

Elynn Chang, Editing Coordinator CC '23

Blue Morris, Senior Editor: General Editing CC '22

Natalie McClain, Senior Editor: Scientific Review BC '22

Kasey Broekema, Senior Editor: Lay Review CC '21

Harini Srinivasan, Accessibility Director BC '22

Olivia Eliopoulos, Accessibility Director BC '22

Atara Schulhof, Social Media Director BC '22

Anastasia Velikovskaya, Outreach Director BC '21

Ausra Pranevicius, Art Director BC '22

Kaitlyn Hazzard, Art Director BC '24

Vika Kulchyckyj, Design Director BC '23

Ashley Chung, Design Director CC '24


Eva Geoghegan GS '24

Zoe Heidenry CC '24

Samuel Hutchinson CC '23

Angel Latt CC '24

Christian Law CC '23

Jackson Law CC '23

Allison Lee BC '24

Anjali Nair SEAS '23

Jill Pasewark BC '22

Atara Schulhof  BC '22

Tori Sproat GS '22

Claire Tatham BC '23

Anastasia Velikovskaya BC '21

Michaela Yip CC '24


Sofia Camacho BC '22

Giuliana Cascarano SEAS '24

Kaitlyn Hazzard BC '24

Ada Jiang BC '22

Vika Kulchyckyj BC '23

Melody Lu CC '24

Annalise Mariottini CC '21

Josef Pawl GS '22

Ausra Pranevicius BC '22

Gabriella Siegel BC '22

Marcus Tian CC '24

Tejasri Vijayakumar CC '24

Micah Woodard SEAS '22

General Editors:

Mary Bence BC '23

Marcus Cooley CC '23

Shelly Ding CC '23

Angela Fasulo BC '22

Esin Gogus CC '24

Esther Goldberg BC '21

Riya Gupta BC '24

Gabriela Hochester  BC '24

Diego Plaza Homiston CC  '23

Roopa Irakam BC '24

Leeza Kopaeva BC '22

Ally Lin CC '23

Mariana Mohsen BC '23

Liz Radway CC '24

Hanna Vorchheimer BC '24

Scientific Reviewers:

Amritha Anupindi BC '22

Sylvester Benson GS '23

Gabriel Chan CC '23

Charlotte Christenson CC '24

Devon Davey CC '24

Jana Jaran BC '22

Ananya Lahiri BC '24

James Lao CC '24

Fidel Martinez CC '23

Neha Narayan SEAS '24

Liliette Quintana BC '24

Rebecca Siegel BC '22

Sydney Steiner BC '22

Madeline Yang BC '24

Aunika Zheng SEAS '24

Lay Reviewers:

Vedika Basavatia BC '24

Priya Chainani CC '24

Katherine Filosa BC '23

Rosa Geoghegan CC '22

Hilda Gitchell BC '23

Tierani Green BC '24

Jacob Kang CC '23

Emma Uk GS '22

Patrick Puma SEAS '24

David Reyes CC '23

Perrin Rudensky BC '22

Caitlin Walsh CC '23

Raine Williams CC '24

PhD Student Reviewers:

James A. Belarde | Neurodevelopment
Lara Boyle | Social Memory and Behavior
Catherine E. Braine | Neurodegenerative Disease
Nicholas Bulthuis | Memory Storage Mechanisms
Xinyue (Tracy) Chen | Epigenetics and Sleep
Katherine C. Delgado | Neurobiology, Cell Biology
Camila Demaestri | Systems Neuroscience
Ishani Ganguly | Theoretical Neuroscience
Alexander (Elie) Goldberg | Neuro-oncology
Rahim Hashim | Neuroscience
Olena Kuksenko | Neurodegenerative Disease

Aaron Limoges | Neurobiology
Ashlea A. Morgan | Developmental Neurobiology
Yasmin H. Ramadan | Developmental Neurogenetics
Bovey Rao | Neurobiology and Behavior
Adrien T. Stanley | Behavioral Neuroscience
Sharon Su | Theoretical Neuroscience
Denis Turcu | Theoretical Neuroscience
Matt Walker | Genetics and Development
Abby Wood | Cellular Neuroscience
Andrew J. Zimnik | Motor Control