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May-Britt Moser

May-Britt Moser

2014 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine
Intro

May-Britt Moser is a Norwegian psychologist and neuroscientist, who is Professor of Neuroscience at Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). She shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 2014 with Edvard Moser and John O'Keefe "for their discoveries of cells that constitute a positioning system in the brain".


Education and Work Experience

  • 1995, Ph. D. in Neurophysiology, the University of Oslo
  • 2000-Present, Professor of Neuroscience, NTNU
  • 2002-2012, Founding Co-Director of Centre for the Biology of Memory
  • 2013-Present, Founding Director of Centre for Neural Computation
Honors and Awards

    • 2003, Elected member of The Royal Norwegian Society of Sciences and Letters 
    • 2005, Elected member of The Norwegian Academy of Science
    • 2013, 47th Louisa Gross Horwitz Prize for Biology or Biochemistry
    • 2014, Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine


Major Academic Achievements

May-Britt Moser has focused her research on spatial navigation and memory. May-Britt Moser's main interest is in understanding how the brain computes and processes information and how this results in cognitive behavior and experience. This is a fundamental cognitive function that we share with all animals. Most of her research has been performed in collaboration with her then-husband and longterm collaborator Edvard Moser. With the combination of advanced inactivation techniques, anatomical approaches and recording methods, their efforts have resulted in several important discoveries. The most spectacular finding was probably the discovery of grid cells in the entorhinal cortex. The entorhinal cortex is a gold mine for studies of neural computation. The discovery of grid cells was succeeded by the identification of other functional cell types, including head direction cells, conjunctive cells and border cells and collectively the findings point to the entorhinal cortex as a hub for the brain network that makes us find our way. In combination with the place cells of the hippocampus, the entorhinal network is thought to provide a ‘coordinate system’ for on-line measurement of distance and direction within given constellations of landmarks. The findings have attracted the interest of experimentalists and modelers throughout the world and her lab has been characterized as a Mecca for single unit studies of spatial navigation and memory.