Daril’s PhD research focused on establishing songbirds as an animal model for the development of a human speech prosthesis.
As a Schmidt Science Fellow, Daril will pivot from Behavioral Neuroscience to Biomedical Engineering to study brain activity during natural conversational speech. He will work with Professors Sergey Stavisky and David Brandman at the University of California, Davis Health, within the Department of Neurological Surgery. This pivot will enable him to leverage his prior expertise in studying free behavior in songbirds to develop and deploy novel interactive experimental paradigms combined with large-scale neural recordings to achieve a next-generation speech neuroprosthesis.
Growing up with a grandparent who was paraplegic, Daril has always wanted to work in the neural engineering space. He hopes to develop medical devices to help those with lost or diminished ability to speak to once again communicate with others. Daril hopes his research will advance communication neuroprosthesis to give a voice to the speechless while deepening our understanding of the neuroscience of vocal communication.