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Silvio Macias

Assistant Professor
Silvio Macias
Integrated Life Science Building, room 2008
1981 Kraft Drive
Blacksburg, VA 24060

Dr. Macias graduated with a B. Sc. and Ph. D. in Biology at the University of Havana. After a Humboldt Foundation Research Fellowship at the Goethe University Frankfurt, he pursued postdoctoral training at Johns Hopkins and Texas A&M University. Dr. Macias joined the Virginia Tech School of Neuroscience in January 2023.  

Prospective students or postdocs should contact Dr. Macias at

See more at about Dr. Macias research at

Dr. Macias' research focuses on understand the functional role of the auditory cortex in processing complex natural sounds as well as its connections with other cortical center to modulate of vocal production. Dr. Macias uses echolocating bat as a model.


Dr. Macias' publications can be found on his Google Scholar Page.

1.       Smotherman MS, Croft T, Macias S (2022) Biosonar discrimination of fine surface textures by echolocating free-tailed bats. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution. 10:969350. doi: 10.3389/fevo.2022.969350

2.       Macias S, Llano D (2022) Descending projections to the auditory midbrain: evolutionary considerations. Journal of Comparative Physiology A.

3.       Macias S, Bakshi K, Troyer T, Smotherman M (2022) The prefrontal cortex of the Mexican free-tailed bat is more selective to communication calls than primary auditory cortex. Journal of Neurophysiology 128: 634–648. doi:10.1152/jn.00436.2021

4.       Macias S, Bakshi K, Smotherman M (2022) Faster repetition rate sharpens the cortical representation of echo streams in echolocating bats. Eneuro 9(1).

5.       Macias S, Bakshi K, Garcia-Rosales F, Hechavarria JC, Smotherman M (2020) Temporal coding of echo spectral shape in the bat auditory cortex. PLoS Biology 18(11): e3000831.

6.       Angeles Salles, Park S, Sundar H, Macias S, Elhilali M, Moss CF (2020) Neural response selectivity to natural sounds in the bat midbrain. Neuroscience 434 (2020) 200–211.

7.       Macias S, Bakshi K, Smotherman M (2020) Functional organization of the primary auditory cortex of the freetailed bat Tadarida brasiliensis. Journal of Comparative Physiology A 206:429–440.

8.       Macias S, Bakshi K, Smotherman M (2019) Laminar Organization of FM Direction Selectivity in the Primary Auditory Cortex of the Free-Tailed Bat. Frontiers in Neural Circuits 13:76.

9.       Luo J, Simmons AM, Beck Q, Macias S, Moss CF, Simmons J (2019) Frequency-modulated up-chirps produce larger evoked responses than down-chirps in the big brown bat auditory brainstem. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 146: 1671-1684.

10.   Warnecke M, Macias S, Falk B, Moss CF (2018) Echo interval and not echo intensity drives bat flight behavior in structured corridors. Journal of Experimental Biology 221, jeb191155.

11.   Macias S, Luo J, Moss CF (2018) Natural echolocation sequences evoke echo-delay selectivity in the auditory midbrain of the FM bat, Eptesicus fuscus. Journal of Neurophysiology, 120: 1323–1339.

12.   Luo J, Macias S, Ness TV, Einevoll GT, Zhang K, Moss CF (2018) Neural timing of stimulus events with microsecond precision. PLoS Biology, 16(10): e2006422.