Robot bowling? Optogenetics dance parties? These are just a few of the activities that visitors enjoyed at the Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience’s Brain Exploration Day, held from 10 am to 1 pm on Saturday, August 27, 2022. More than 300 people from places as far away as Orlando and Little Torch Key visited the Jupiter, Florida-based institute for behind-the-scenes tours and hands-on science activities.
The event took place as MPFI celebrates the 10th anniversary of opening its state-of-the-art research facility, home to eight labs, high-tech microscopy facilities, and a world-class mechanical engineering facility.
“I am thrilled that so many people in our community visited us today to learn more and get excited about science,” said Dr. David Fitzpatrick, Scientific Director and CEO.
MPFI scientists conduct fundamental research, seeking a new understanding of the nervous system and its capacity to produce language, memory, emotion, and movement. Since opening in 2012, MPFI scientists have published more than 200 previously unknown findings about brain development and function. In addition, MPFI has trained more than 300 scientific trainees and holds community outreach events like Brain Exploration Day to help raise awareness of the importance of understanding how the brain works.
“Brain Exploration Day is our chance to give back to the community that has welcomed us for the last decade and is a wonderful opportunity to share the exciting science that is being developed right here in South Florida,” said MPFI spokesperson Katie Edwards.
The Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience (MPFI), a not-for-profit research organization, is part of the world-renowned Max Planck Society, Germany’s most successful research organization with 86 institutes worldwide. Since its establishment in 1948, 29 Nobel laureates have emerged from the ranks of its scientists. As its first U.S. institution, MPFI provides exceptional neuroscientists with the resources and technology to answer fundamental questions about brain development and function. MPFI researchers employ a curiosity-driven approach to science to develop new technologies that make groundbreaking scientific discoveries possible.