Projects : An integrated approach

Research projects at the Laboratory of Neurophysiology are focused on the functions and dysfunctions of three major nervous system networks:

1. Basal ganglia system: motor control, motor learning and drug addiction.

2. Calcium homeostasis and neuronal excitability: cerebellar system and diseases.

3. Physiopathology of the enteric NS and the interstitial cells in gut motility

Our research is based on an integrated approach that allows a bottom up strategy from the gene to the functions that it determines and from the individual synapse to the neuronal network.

This approach combines techniques of chemical and functional neuroanatomy (conventional and multiphoton confocal microscopy including 3D reconstruction, immunocytochemistry, in-situ hybridization, receptor autoradiography ) for the study of chemical neuro-messengers functions and their interactions; electrophysiology (patch clamp on brain slices or isolated cells, microspectrofluorometry, calcium imaging, optogenetics) for the study of the modulation and plasticity of the neuronal excitability and synaptic transmission; molecular biology (conditional transgenesis, single cell and quantitative RT-PCR, differential gene expression, microarrays) for the characterization of specific genes and the study of their functions by invalidation or surexpression in animal models ; biochemistry (Western Blot, proteomics, receptor binding) ; behavioural analysis (motor learning and control, drug addiction paradigms, anxiety paradigms, operant learning) and theoretical modelling (computer simulation).