Our Research

The brain must transform sensory signals into a neural code that drives perception and behavior.

Background Segmentation

Distinguishing a percept from others in the background.

Concentration Invariance

Recognizing an odor as the same whether it's near or far away.

Concentration Sensitivity

Optimizing detection of the concentration changes.

Our hypothesis is that the olfactory bulb is critically involved in carrying out these functions.

Odor detection begins by the transmission of sensory cues into the olfactory bulb.

Odor Transduction

Inhaled odors bind to receptors located in the nasal cavity.

Odor Processing

Odor information is sent to the bulb (red) where it is transformed and transmitted to the rest of the brain (green).

We study how sensory information is transformed across this circuit.

Genetically encoded sensors are fluorescent proteins that report cellular activity.

Genetic targeting allows measurements of functional activity from different cell types.

Multi-color 2-photon imaging to simultaneously measure activitiy in different cell types

Functional trasformations within the bulb

Concentration sensitivity

Odor representations are stable across concentrations.

Background adjustments

Bulb processing generates background adjustments.

Lab Members


Douglas A. Storace, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

Dr. Storace completed his Ph.D. in the laboratory of Heather Read at the University of Connecticut. His dissertation focused on anatomical and genetic markers to distinguish functionally distinct auditory cortical fields. He completed his postdoctoral fellowship in the laboratory of Lawrence Cohen at Yale University using genetically encoded voltage and calcium indicators to understand how odor signals are transformed by the olfactory bulb. He began his own laboratory at Florida State University in 2019 which uses the olfactory system as a model to define how sensory information is transformed by neural circuits.


Meizhu Qi

Graduate Assistant

My research is motivated by the interesting phenomenon that behavior of animals is modulated by their metabolic state. For example, the olfactory perception of obese mice is different from that of wild type. My dissertation is focused on understanding one possible neural pathway that links an organism’s metabolic state and sensory processing. Using tract tracing and immunohistochemical approaches I have comprehensively characterized the orexinergic pathway from the hypothalamus to the olfactory bulb, which may serve as a mechanism linking metabolic and sensory processing.


Contact Us

Message will be sent to dstorace@fsu.edu