Institut du Cerveau https://institutducerveau-icm.org Fri, 07 May 2021 13:44:53 +0000 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.13 hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.13 iMIND international Master In Neurodegenerative Diseases https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/imind-international-master-neurodegenerative-diseases-2/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/imind-international-master-neurodegenerative-diseases-2/#respond Fri, 07 May 2021 13:44:05 +0000 Ignacio Colmenero https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=21315 Interested in Neurosciences and neurodegenerative diseases?

The call for applications to the iMIND - International Master in Neurodegenerative Diseases - Master 2 For more information ]]> Interested in Neurosciences and neurodegenerative diseases?

The call for applications to the iMIND – International Master in Neurodegenerative Diseases – Master 2 programme, will be open from May 10 to June 30th!

iMIND is a selective programme built on the partnership between the Paris Brain Institute and Sorbonne University.

iMIND brings together expert researchers from the Paris Brain Institute and other Sorbonne Université neuroscience centers, providing students with an immersive experience in up-to-date innovative research into normal and pathological brain function.

This year, the Paris Brain Institute will offer up to 4 scholarships (600€/month during the first semester) for international students interested in iMIND (upon selection).

Information regarding the application process is detailed here:

http://master.bip.sorbonne-universite.fr/en/apply-forms.html

Download the iMind leaflet

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Stepwise target controllability identifies dysregulations of macrophage networks in multiple sclerosis https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/stepwise-target-controllability-identifies-dysregulations-of-macrophage-networks-in-multiple-sclerosis/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/stepwise-target-controllability-identifies-dysregulations-of-macrophage-networks-in-multiple-sclerosis/#respond Thu, 06 May 2021 15:42:08 +0000 Ines Haddad https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=21290 Violetta ZUJOVIC, INSERM researcher and Team Leader and Fabrizio De VICO FALLANI, INRIA researcher at the Paris Brain Institute just published in Network For more information ]]> Violetta ZUJOVIC, INSERM researcher and Team Leader and Fabrizio De VICO FALLANI, INRIA researcher at the Paris Brain Institute just published in Network Neuroscience.
Identifying the nodes able to drive the state of a network is crucial to understand, and eventually control, biological systems. Despite recent advances, such identification remains difficult because of the huge number of equivalent controllable configurations, even in relatively simple networks.

Based on the evidence that in many applications it is essential to test the ability of individual nodes to control a specific target subset, we develop a fast and principled method to identify controllable driver-target configurations in sparse and directed networks. We demonstrate our approach on simulated networks and experimental gene networks to characterize macrophage dysregulation in human subjects with multiple sclerosis.
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Definition of new forms of the behavioural variant of frontotemporal degenerations (FTD) https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/definition-of-new-forms-of-the-behavioural-variant-of-frontotemporal-degenerations-ftd/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/definition-of-new-forms-of-the-behavioural-variant-of-frontotemporal-degenerations-ftd/#respond Wed, 05 May 2021 09:20:02 +0000 Ines Haddad https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=21258 Frontotemporal degeneration (FTD) is a complex neurodegenerative disorder that can manifest itself through a wide range of symptoms. Valérie Godefroy, postdoctoral For more information ]]> Frontotemporal degeneration (FTD) is a complex neurodegenerative disorder that can manifest itself through a wide range of symptoms. Valérie Godefroy, postdoctoral researcher in the Frontlab, under the supervision of Lara Migliaccio, and her colleagues at the Paris Brain Institute and the Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital are enriching the clinical picture of this pathology by identifying new subtypes of its behavioural variant. This more precise definition of the different forms of the disease is essential for more personalised management of patients. The results are published in Alzheimer’s & Dementia: Diagnosis, Assessment & Disease Monitoring.

Frontotemporal degeneration (FTD) is a neurodegenerative disease that can manifest itself through a wide range of clinical signs, making its diagnosis complex. A major objective for clinicians working on this disease is to better characterise this diversity of forms of the disease and to identify subgroups with common characteristics. The challenge is to better understand every aspect of the disease and its progression in order to provide personalised care for patients.

One of the main symptoms of the behavioural variant of FTD is inhibition deficits, i.e. a generalised difficulty in controlling behaviour. This manifests itself in socially maladaptive behaviour (inappropriate thinking, disregard for social conventions, etc.), impulsivity and compulsive actions (repeating the same action or gesture several times automatically, for example). Based specifically on these behavioural manifestations of inhibition deficits, the study conducted by Valérie Godefroy and her colleagues at the Paris Brain Institute sought to identify subtypes of FTD patients.

Disinhibition behaviours are particularly difficult to assess and objectify, and do not necessarily present themselves in an obvious way during consultations with the doctor. One of the challenges of the study was therefore to measure these symptoms in detail, by observing them in a context close to real life, using what is called an “ecological approach”.

We took advantage of a protocol already in place at the Brain Institute as part of the ECOCAPTURE project, led by Bénédicte Batrancourt and Richard Levy, which includes time in the functional exploration room of the Institute’s PRISME platform. “explains Valérie Godefroy. This room was set up as a comfortable waiting room and presented as such to the 15 FTD patients and 15 control subjects included in the study. The participants spent about 45 minutes in the room, which was filmed and included time for discussion with an investigator. “This seemed to us to be an interesting situation for measuring uninhibited behaviour because it could generate impatience or even frustration in the participants, who did not know how long this waiting situation would last,” continues the researcher.
By analysing the behaviours observed in the video recordings, the researchers identified two main types of inhibition deficit: automatic compulsive behaviour and socially maladaptive behaviour. They then highlighted three behavioural groups of FTD patients, whose specificities (notably in terms of atrophied brain regions) were explored. The first group, very different from the other two, showed a lot of compulsive behaviour and very severe atrophy in the orbitofrontal regions and the ventromedial prefrontal cortex. “These data suggest that strong compulsive behaviours may be indicative of high disease severity. “says Valérie Godefroy.

The other two groups were less affected in their behaviour and differed from each other in socially inappropriate behaviour. Unexpectedly, the group with the most socially inappropriate behaviour was the group with the least atrophy in the brain. It was also characterised by more anxiety and depressive symptoms, potentially related to more awareness of the disease.

Taken together, these results allow us to enrich the clinical picture of FTD. We identify two main subtypes of the behavioural variant of this disease, associated with different brain damage. These data need to be supported by other studies, particularly longitudinal studies, i.e. with follow-up of patients over time, but they should make it possible to better stratify patients on the basis of their behaviour in order to offer them appropriate treatments. “concludes the researcher.

https://alz-journals.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/dad2.12178

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Jaime DE JUAN-SANZ, team leader at the Paris Brain Institute, selected for the FENS-Kavli Scholars https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/jaime-de-juan-sanz-team-leader-at-the-paris-brain-institute-selected-for-the-fens-kavli-scholars/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/jaime-de-juan-sanz-team-leader-at-the-paris-brain-institute-selected-for-the-fens-kavli-scholars/#respond Wed, 21 Apr 2021 12:31:45 +0000 Ines Haddad https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=21200 The FENS-Kavli Network (FKNE) is pleased to announce the recruitment of the new 2021 cohort of FENS-Kavli Scholars. In 2014, FENS and the Kavli Foundation announced For more information ]]> The FENS-Kavli Network (FKNE) is pleased to announce the recruitment of the new 2021 cohort of FENS-Kavli Scholars. In 2014, FENS and the Kavli Foundation announced the FENS-Kavli Network of Excellence: a group of early career, independent neuroscience investigators based in Europe, and chosen for their scientific excellence, originality, and leadership. A new cohort of 15 FENS-Kavli Scholars representing 10 different European countries have now been selected. The new Scholars will join the 2018 cohort, forming am active network of 30 Scholars based representing13 different countries. FKNE Scholars are selected for 2 X 2-year terms, after which they become members of the growing FKNE Alumni.The multidisciplinary, international network of FENS-Kavli Scholars is self-organised and aims to improve neuroscience in Europe and beyond through scientific exchange, advocacy, and outreach. FKNE Scholars participate in several meetings per year that allow for lively discussion of a range of topics across Neuroscience as well as challenges and opportunities for European neuroscientists. They then put their ideas into action, for example through opinion articles and white-paper recommendations to European stakeholders on funding schemes and other key issues, public engagement, establishing conference childcare grants, and through the delivery of special prizes that are awarded during the FENS Forum for exceptional individuals. These prizes are aimed to shine a light on senior investigators who have shown outstanding examples mentorship, younger scientists who have delivered excellent PhD theses, and for role models who have substantially delivered the advancement of diversity in neuroscience.

“The world is changing –not only has the pandemic altered how we go about research, scientific collaboration, and dissemination; but the importance of neuroscience for the future of brain health is being increasingly underscored across society. At the same time, European neuroscience faces significant challenges in maintaining sufficient investment into blue skies fundamental research, mentoring trainee researchers and students, and empowering early career group leaders to do their best work as autonomously and creatively as possible.“

To help meet these challenges, the FENS-Kavli Network provides a powerful platform for amplifying the voices and reach of a diverse group of early career investigators in support of the wider European neuroscience community.“ -saysDr. Tomás Ryan, Associate Professor at Trinity College Dublin, Ireland; and Chair of the FENS Kavli Network.“The FENS-Kavli Network of Excellence is running since 2014 thanks to the generous support of the Kavli Foundation and in collaboration with FENS. This group of exceptional junior and mid-career neuroscientists from across Europe plays a key role to shape the future of neuroscience as the voice of the next-generation scientists. We are proud of what they accomplished. I am also glad that their vision includes not only the development of excellent science and basic research, the key to progress, but also concerns for the impact of the current crisis and the place of science in the society. I congratulate the new scholars and I am convinced they will enthusiastically be at the front place in research, outreach and advocacy,” says Professor Jean-Antoine Girault, President of FENS.

The names and profiles of all FKNE Scholars are available on the FENS-Kavli Scholars webpage at www.fenskavlinetwork.org  

Contact FENS-Kavli Network of Excellence (FKNE): excellence_network@fens.org 

Jaime de Juan Sanz  website : http://www.dejuansanzlab.org/

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A New Non-Invasive Therapy for the Treatment of Primary Orthostatic Tremor (POT): Trans-Spinal Electrical Stimulation https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/a-new-non-invasive-therapy-for-the-treatment-of-primary-orthostatic-tremor-pot-trans-spinal-electrical-stimulation/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/a-new-non-invasive-therapy-for-the-treatment-of-primary-orthostatic-tremor-pot-trans-spinal-electrical-stimulation/#respond Mon, 19 Apr 2021 09:58:25 +0000 Ines Haddad https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=21174 Primary orthostatic tremor (POT) is a rare and poorly understood neurological disorder. It presents as a very rapid tremor (not visible to the naked eye) of the legs For more information ]]> Primary orthostatic tremor (POT) is a rare and poorly understood neurological disorder. It presents as a very rapid tremor (not visible to the naked eye) of the legs and trunk, causing a feeling of instability and fear of falling. The symptoms appear when standing still (orthostatism) and disappear when walking or leaning on a support. This disorder has an important impact on daily life activities done in a standing position (shower, in line, kitchen, etc…) with a strong impact on the quality of life of patients.

The disorder generally appears between the ages of 50 and 60 and affects women more often than men. To date, drug treatments have had little or no effect on the symptoms of POT. A few patients have been treated with deep brain stimulation, a technique that involves implanting electrodes in the brain, as in essential tremor, but the effects have been minimal or inconclusive (Aptes | Association of people affected by essential tremor). At Paris Brain Institute, the “Mov’it” team (normal and abnormal motor control: movement disorders and experimental therapeutics) co-directed by Profs. Vidailhet and Lehéricy, is interested in movement disorders and, in particular, POT.

A study led by Jean-Charles Lamy, member of the Mov’it team and operational manager of PANAM the platform for the exploration of movement at Paris Brain Institute has just shown, thanks to research, that trans-spinal electrical stimulation improves both the time in a standing position and reduces the amplitude as well as the frequency of tremor. This study is published in the journal “Movement Disorders”.

The causes of POT are still unknown. But the mechanisms are beginning to be better understood. Our teams have identified a “communication” disorder between neurons in the brainstem (contributing to the control of body position), the cerebellum (controlling balance and coordination of movements) and the cerebral cortex (directing voluntary gestures). In addition, shaking muscles send altered sensory messages (proprioception) via the spinal cord to the cerebral cortex, distorting the perception of body posture when standing. This has led to the implantation of electrodes in the spinal cord of some patients, but this neurosurgical technique is very invasive.

The study conducted on 16 patients suffering from POT at Paris Brain Institute uses a non-invasive technique of electrical stimulation of the spinal cord, through the skin, thanks to localized stimulation (device dedicated to research not yet available for patient care).

The results show that after a single stimulation, tremors are reduced and the time patients spend standing without support is increased.

This study constitutes a proof of concept of the effect of trans-spinal electrical stimulation for future clinical trials and opens the way to the prospects of an effective non-invasive treatment of POT.

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Pierre Nectoux, co-founder of Wefight, named to the “30 Under 30” ranking by Forbes France magazine https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/pierre-nectoux-co-founder-of-wefight-named-to-the-30-under-30-ranking-by-forbes-france-magazine/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/pierre-nectoux-co-founder-of-wefight-named-to-the-30-under-30-ranking-by-forbes-france-magazine/#respond Tue, 13 Apr 2021 15:13:39 +0000 amélie mondoloni https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=21162 Forbes France magazine unveiled in its latest issue the ranking of its fifth edition "30 Under 30". This ranking is dedicated to a new generation of entrepreneurs For more information ]]> Forbes France magazine unveiled in its latest issue the ranking of its fifth edition “30 Under 30”. This ranking is dedicated to a new generation of entrepreneurs who disrupt the codes of their field: sports, finance, art, entertainment, environment or health.

The 2021 edition honors Pierre Nectoux, CTO and co-founder of the startup Wefight incubated within iPEPS – The Healthtech Hub.

Created in 2017 by Benoit Brouard, a hospital pharmacist, and Pierre Nectoux, and engineer,  Wefight aims to develop virtual assistants for patients with cancer or chronic diseases. In 2019, the company launched, in collaboration with the teams of the Paris Brain Institute and the adult psychiatry department of the Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital, “Vik Dépression”, a virtual companion whose objective is to support and inform people affected by depression.

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OPENING OF A NEW DOMAIN: COMPUTATIONAL MODELLING IN NEUROSCIENCE https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/opening-of-a-new-domain-computational-modelling-in-neuroscience/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/opening-of-a-new-domain-computational-modelling-in-neuroscience/#respond Mon, 29 Mar 2021 09:37:12 +0000 Thomas Mariani https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=21072 The objective of the new scientific domain (Computational modelling in neuroscience) is to recognise the particular interdisciplinary experience of some researchers For more information ]]> The objective of the new scientific domain (Computational modelling in neuroscience) is to recognise the particular interdisciplinary experience of some researchers at Paris Brain Institute. Up to now people using a computational neuroscience approach were included in the other domains and applied their expertise in their host team. This new domain will give them the opportunity to share their vision – complementary with the vision of the other domains – to the institute scientific and medical COPIL. 

The major aims of the PIs in the new domain are:

 – Mathematical and computational modelling of multi-scale brain mechanisms ranging from molecular/cellular processeslarge-scale integrated structure and dynamics (eg, anatomo-functional interactions), to cognition and behavior.

 – Development of data-mining methods including network sciencesignal/image processingmachine learning and AI, for data interpretation and analysis and for better diagnosis and prognosis in neurological and psychiatric diseases;

–  Development of scientific software and engineering tools for neuroscience applications.

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Non-invasive brain stimulation for neurodegenerative diseases https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/non-invasive-brain-stimulation-neurodegenerative-diseases/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/non-invasive-brain-stimulation-neurodegenerative-diseases/#respond Thu, 25 Mar 2021 09:05:06 +0000 Ignacio Colmenero https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=21047 Non-invasive brain stimulation is a rapidly expanding field with promising leads for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. Within the Frontlab of the Paris For more information ]]> Non-invasive brain stimulation is a rapidly expanding field with promising leads for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. Within the Frontlab of the Paris Brain Institute, Clara Sanches, a doctoral student, Dr. Lara Migliaccio (Inserm) and Dr. Antoni Valero-Cabré (CNRS) and their collaborators are combining their expertise on the subject to develop both fundamental research on the subject and a hospital clinical research programme (PHRC AP-HP). They recently published an article in Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, in which they examine for the first time all the non-invasive brain stimulation trials in eight neurodegenerative diseases and advocate specific directions for better development of this field of biomedical research.

Distribution du courant électrique dans le cerveau pour deux ensembles donnés de paramètres de tDCS.

Electrical current distribution in the brain for two given sets of tDCS parameters.

 

New therapeutic strategies in neurodegenerative diseases

 

The ageing of the population and the increasing prevalence of neurodegenerative diseases is creating unprecedented pressure on societies and their health systems. Despite promising leads and discoveries, drug treatments and other therapies are still few and far between and have not shown significant ability to alter the prognosis of these diseases.

 

Non-invasive brain stimulation interventions, such as transcranial magnetic stimulation or direct current electrical stimulation, offer hope for neurodegenerative diseases. They have shown their capacity to act on brain plasticity processes and have been well known for more than a decade in the modulation of various cognitive processes in non-diseased subjects. Recent studies have also shown promise in the ability of these techniques to improve cognitive processes related to language or memory during aging. “For the moment, it is not a question of curing these pathologies, as there is no solid evidence to show that these technologies act on the biological mechanisms of neurodegenerative diseases. On the other hand, through their modulating effects on the activity of cerebral regions and cognitive networks, they could make it possible to better preserve the cognitive functions of patients suffering from neurodegenerative diseases for longer” explains Antoni Valero-Cabré, neurologist and CNRS research director at the Paris Brain Institute’s Frontlab.

 

Well-known neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, but also fronto-temporal degeneration and primary progressive aphasia face huge challenges. Early treatment is one of them. These diseases are a race against time in which existing treatments can often only temporarily slow down the evolution. Preserving patients’ functions as early as possible is therefore essential. Another challenge is the personalisation of treatments. “Even within the same group of neurodegenerative diseases, each patient is different. It is not a question of the duration of the disease or its severity. The cerebral and functional damage can be completely different from one patient to another. ” Lara Migliaccio, neurologist and Inserm researcher in the Paris Brain Institute’s Frontlab, precises.

 

The Paris Brain Institute’s Frontlab, which brings together researchers and doctor-researchers with multiple areas of expertise in neuroimaging, neurostimulation and neurology, is trying to develop new therapeutic strategies by objectively evaluating the therapeutic effect of non-invasive brain stimulation on the diseased brain.

 

 

Transcranial magnetic stimulation and transcranial direct current stimulation

 

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) is a non-invasive technology that allows focused action on a particular brain region by means of electrical currents generated by a transient magnetic field. It is capable of transiently altering the activity of the targeted region and has been used to restore normal electrical activity in damaged areas of the brain. TMS acts mainly on superficial regions of the brain, at the level of the cortex, but has nevertheless shown an ability to influence the activity of regions distant from the stimulation area, connected however anatomically by white matter bundles to the latter.

 

Transcranial direct current electrical stimulation (tDCS) consists of passing a weak electrical current between two electrodes placed on two distant regions of the skull. This has the effect of polarising a region of the cortex and thus modulating the excitability of neurons, making them more or less sensitive to physiological activation. Unlike TMS, it does not act directly on the electrical activity of the neurons in the cortex. It has the advantage of being much less expensive than TMS and easier to use in hospital or in follow-up care, but with less spatial precision.

 

Two main rehabilitation strategies are favoured for these techniques. One is to increase the activity of the cortex in regions associated with specific cognitive functions, and/or to block the activity of networks that could interfere with or prevent the recovery of patients’ abilities.

 

Non-invasive stimulation in neurodegenerative diseases

 

In an article published in the journal Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, Lara Migliaccio, Antoni Valero-Cabré, and their teams at Frontlab, review all published studies of non-invasive brain stimulation in eight neurodegenerative diseases: Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, dementia with Lewy bodies, primary progressive aphasia, behavioural variant of frontotemporal degeneration, cortico-basal syndrome, progressive supranuclear palsy and posterior cortical atrophy. The majority of them present interesting results, more or less preliminary, for the preservation of cognitive functions thanks to non-invasive brain stimulation, suggesting the interest of continuing research in this field. However, the diversity of strategies used in the different studies and the parameters studied to judge the effectiveness of these therapies are too numerous to establish a clear line for the moment as to the use of non-invasive brain stimulation in the different pathologies and the modalities that could be used. Nevertheless, the authors present in detail a series of clinical, cognitive and technological suggestions and innovations to guide the development of future studies and trials.

 

STIM-DS: An innovative therapeutic trial in primary progressive aphasia

 

Pre-therapeutic data published by Dr. Valero-Cabré and Dr. Marc Teichmann (Institute of Memory and Alzheimer’s Disease, IM2A, APHP) in the prestigious journal Annals of Neurology in 2016 led to the development of a therapeutic trial, financed by the APHP (PHRC National) and the Alzheimer Research Foundation (FRA). This trial is currently being conducted at IM2A on a population of patients with primary progressive aphasia, semantic variant.  “For this clinical research project with a therapeutic aim, we were interested in a pathology in which variability is minimal. The patients’ atrophy is very focused on the left temporal lobe, but even in this case we realised that there was a high degree of variability from one patient to another. Some patients have bilateral involvement, others have frontal lobe involvement…” continues Lara Migliaccio. “During the pandemic, the personalisation of treatment, the development of a stimulation platform and the evaluation to be carried out at home by caregivers under telemedicine control have thus become key elements in the future development of these therapeutic strategies. “adds Dr. Valero-Cabré. The study has already shown promising results on the use of transcranial direct current stimulation to improve language skills in patients with primary progressive aphasia and continues, despite difficulties related to health conditions, to actively seek patients.

 

More information: https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/transcranial-direct-current-stimulation-benefits-for-treatment-of-primary-progressive-aphasia/

 

 

Another study also showed a beneficial pre-therapeutic effect of transcranial direct current stimulation on similar language impairment in another pathology targeting the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex: progressive supranuclear palsy. The results of pre-therapeutic trials on other neurodegenerative pathologies, such as fronto-temporal dementia or the logopenic (difficulty in finding words without comprehension problems) and non-fluent (difficulty in syntax, elocution, reading and writing) variants of primary progressive aphasia, also explored by these teams, are currently being analysed or published.

Valero Cabré, A, Sanches C, Godard J, Fracchia O, Dubois B, Levy R, Truong T, Bikson Mm, Teichmann M. Language boosting by transcranial stimulation in Progressive Supranuclear Palsy. Neurology 2019; 93(6): e537-e547

affectées chez les patients atteints d'aphasie progressive primaire (APP), représentées sur un cerveau standard. Les régions spécifiques à chaque variante de l'APP sont indiquées par des couleurs différentes

Affected cortical regions in patients with primary progressive aphasia (PPA), shown on a standard brain. Regions specific to each PPA variant are indicated by different colours.

All these very encouraging results in patients underline the interest in continuing brain stimulation studies in patients. The STIM-DS trial is still recruiting patients.

Contact :

anna.kaglik@icm-institute.org et antoni.valerocabre@icm-institute.org

The future of non-invasive brain stimulation treatments

 

Our study highlights three challenges for the future of non-invasive brain stimulation treatments: the personalisation of therapies, the interest in integrating them into a more global care approach with a cognitive rehabilitation programme or as a complement to drug therapies, and this from the early stages of the disease. “The two researchers emphasise.

 

From a technical point of view, research should also integrate new knowledge on the mechanisms and constraints guiding the impact of electric and magnetic fields on brain tissue and brain activity, to develop more optimised neurostimulation approaches that adapt to the morphological characteristics of the head and brain of each patient and to the extent of neurodegenerative cortical atrophy.

 

Years of failed drug therapies for neurodegenerative diseases have raised the issue of the treatment window. Symptoms of these diseases do not appear until years after the onset of brain damage, and the damage is already too great by the time treatments are provided to have a significant effect. Acting at early stages of the disease, however, requires early diagnosis and reliable biomarkers of disease progression to assess the impact of the therapies being tested. “On this issue, brain stimulation will be fully effective if it is provided as early as possible, when the damage is not yet extensive. It will then be a real tool for preserving the potential of patients’ cognitive abilities. “concludes Antoni Valero-Cabré. 

Source

Past, Present, and Future of Non-invasive Brain Stimulation Approaches to Treat Cognitive Impairment in Neurodegenerative Diseases: Time for a Comprehensive Critical Review. Sanches C, Stengel C, Godard J, Mertz J, Teichmann M, Migliaccio R, Valero-Cabré A. Front Aging Neurosci. 2021 Jan

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FRANCE BRAIN BEE 2021: 3RD EDITION ONLINE https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/france-brain-bee-2021-3rd-edition-online/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/france-brain-bee-2021-3rd-edition-online/#respond Mon, 22 Mar 2021 09:21:24 +0000 Ignacio Colmenero https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=21030 The results of France Brain Bee 2021

The winners of the 2021 edition of the France Brain Bee competition are :

Classement Prénom Nom Nom de l'établissement For more information ]]> The results of France Brain Bee 2021

The winners of the 2021 edition of the France Brain Bee competition are :

Classement Prénom Nom Nom de l’établissement d’enseignement
1 Alexis VITALIS Lycée Albert Londres
2 Soham KHISTY ICS Paris
3 Agasthya KAMATH ICS PARIS
4 Hugo KERMICHE Lycée Louis le Grand
5 Alexandre RAVEL Ecole Jeannine Manuel

“The online competition went very well overall and the various tests went perfectly and on time. On the Jeopardy event we managed to reproduce the atmosphere of the in-person competition and the tension was palpable on the faces of some participants. ” The organisers of the competition at the Paris Brain Institute

The same feeling was felt by the participants:

J.L: Thank you very much for organising this competition and giving us this opportunity!!! Congratulations to the winners!

A.K: It was a nice experience even through zoom. There was a lot of interaction and I loved it. Once again congratulations to all the participants & winners.

The Paris Brain Institute has organised the France Brain Bee competition on 20 March 2021!

The International Brain Bee (IBB) is an international neuroscience competition aimed at secondary school students. Its mission is to help students learn about the brain and its functions, inform them about careers in neuroscience and dispel misconceptions about brain diseases.

Since 2018, the Paris Brain Institute is pleased to be the official host of the national France Brain Bee competition. Due to the health context, it was not possible to hold this event in our premises as it was the case for the first edition, this year the third edition of the competition took place on 20 March 2021 online

Throughout the day, participants completed neuro-anatomy and neuro-histology tests, answered a neuroscience quiz and diagnosed a patient’s pathology through a new interactive test.

The winner of the France Brain Bee 2021 competition will participate in the International Brain Bee competition during the IBRO conference in September 2021 which was supposed to take place in San Diego CA, USA but due to the COVID 19 the international competition will also take place remotely.

In order to make this event happen we have worked closely with the non-profit organisation, Gifted in France, to enable as many French high schools as possible to participate in the national competition.

At the Paris Brain Institute, researcher Jacobo SITT led the involvement of expert researchers who help select the winning student on the day of the competition and provide a training session to prepare them for the international competition.

Want to know more? Visit the following link to discover the page dedicated to the competition: https://openbrainschool.com/programme/concours-france-brain-bee-2021/

About the International Brain Bee Competition

Founded by Dr Norbert Myslinski at the University of Maryland in 1999, the International Brain Bee Competition now has over 50 participating countries. IBB is a non-profit educational organization formed through partnerships with the International Brain Research Organization (IBRO), the Dana Foundation, the Federation of European Neuroscience Societies (FENS), the Society for Neuroscience (SfN) and the American Psychological Association (APA).

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https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/france-brain-bee-2021-3rd-edition-online/feed/ 0 Obesity and response to food marketing https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/obesity-and-response-to-food-marketing/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/obesity-and-response-to-food-marketing/#respond Sat, 13 Mar 2021 13:37:24 +0000 Ignacio Colmenero https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=20991 Researchers from the Paris Brain Institute, INSEAD, the Nutrition Department of the Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital (AP-HP/Sorbonne Université), EPHE and the For more information ]]> Researchers from the Paris Brain Institute, INSEAD, the Nutrition Department of the Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital (AP-HP/Sorbonne Université), EPHE and the University of British Columbia, provide new evidence for a reciprocal relationship between obesity and susceptibility to food marketing and that this relationship is not a stable individual predisposition. The results are published in the Journal of Consumer Psychology.

 

Is there a relationship between how one responds to food marketing and obesity? While the former is often accused of contributing to the increase in the prevalence of obesity in the population, no relationship between the two at the individual level has yet been established since marketing studies rarely investigate respondents with obesity. If there is such a relationship, does bariatric surgery, one of the most successful current weight loss interventions for people with severe obesity, influence this response to food marketing?

 

To explore these questions, researchers from the Paris Brain Institute, INSEAD, the Nutrition Department of the Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital, EPHE and University of British Columbia, studied the responses of 3 groups of individuals to the classic food marketing tactics of presenting food as healthier than it really is. The first group consisted of individuals who were obese before, 3 months and 12 months after bariatric surgery. The second was a control group of non-obese individuals. The third was a control group of individuals who were obese but had not taken any steps to lose weight.

 

Their results show that patients with obesity responded more strongly to food marketing tactics prior to bariatric surgery, compared to lean individuals. Interestingly, however, these differences attenuated 12 months after the weight loss surgery.

 

This first result is very important because it shows that the response to food marketing is not necessarily an individual disposition such as a lack of self-control or a high sensitivity to reward in subjects with obesity per se as previously thought.

explains Hilke Plassmann, INSEAD’s Octapharma Chaired Professor of Decision Neuroscience and researcher at the Paris Brain Institute.

 

A new possible of this work could be the existence of a reinforcement loop between the metabolic state of obesity and responsiveness to food marketing. People with obesity are more responsive to food marketing, which in turn decreases once this metabolic state is changed towards a more metabolic healthy state (i.e., after weight loss going hand in hand with a normalization of various metabolic parameters).

 

Why bariatric surgery is associated with a decreased response to food marketing remains an interesting question for future research. From a neuroscientific point of view, a related study co-authored by Hilke Plassmann and Liane Schmidt at the Paris Brain Institute amongst others, have shown that changes in brain connectivity at rest in reward systems predicts weight loss and correlates with changes post-surgery in the satiety hormone leptin. These findings hint at the idea that bariatric surgery has a much more complex beneficial impact for patients beyond the obvious weight loss.

 

Source

Obesity and Responsiveness to Food Marketing Before and After Bariatric Surgery. Yann Cornil,  Hilke Plassmann,  Judith Aron‐Wisnewsky,  Christine Poitou‐Bernert,  Karine Clément, Michèle Chabert,  Pierre Chandon. Journal of Consumer Psychology. Feb 2021. https://doi.org/10.1002/jcpy.1221

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Weight loss and reward brain system https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/weight-loss-and-reward-brain-system/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/weight-loss-and-reward-brain-system/#respond Fri, 12 Mar 2021 10:17:49 +0000 Ignacio Colmenero https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=20940 A study conducted by Liane Schmidt (INSERM) and Hilke Plassmann (INSEAD’s Octapharma Chaired Professor of Decision Neuroscience) both researchers at the Paris For more information ]]> A study conducted by Liane Schmidt (INSERM) and Hilke Plassmann (INSEAD’s Octapharma Chaired Professor of Decision Neuroscience) both researchers at the Paris Brain Institute establishes for the first time a link between weight loss, the connectivity of the brain’s system at rest and hormonal regulation of satiety. The results are published in Brain Communication.

 

Obesity is a multifactorial condition, integrating environmental, hormonal, psychological and physiological dimensions. One dimension remains little explored, that of the neurobiological bases and to what extent these can predict weight variations.

 

Previous studies have identified that increased activity of reward and motivation systems in the brain in response to seeing foods in participants with obesity, but had not taken into account that the global changes associated with obesity, particularly metabolic changes, could have an impact on the functioning of these brain systems.

 

To obtain a more integrated view of the issue, Liane Schmidt, HIlke Plassman and their collaborators some at the Nutrition Department of the Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital at Sorbonne University conducted a study involving 44 participants, 14 patients with obesity before and after they had undergone bariatric surgery, and 30 age-matched controls also examined twice over the same time span. In a first step, the team compared the connectivity of brain regions involved in reward at rest. They then used these results to assess whether connectivity could predict weight loss or weight gain over a period of 8 months.

 

Two connectivity networks in the reward system varied between obese and non-obese subjects: that between the ventromedial prefrontal cortex and the ventral striatum and that between the ventromedial and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. On the other hand, only the connectivity of the former was able to predict weight changes in obese participants over time and after bariatric surgery.

 

We show that before surgery, participants with obesity had decreased activity in the brain’s reward system compared to lean participants, and that this activity returns to a more stable state after surgery and weight loss. In addition, this reward system activity was a good predictor of the ability to lose weight. Thus, the more the resting state activity in the reward system changed over time, the greater the weight loss over time.

explains Liane Schmidt, co-team leader of the Control Interoception and Attention Team at the Paris Brain Institute.

 

In the last part of the study, the team linked the change in brain connectivity to a third variable: the satiety hormone leptin. In participants with obesity, leptin levels are very high but leptin does not function properly. After surgery leptin levels decrease and can better signal satiety again. The Paris Brain Institute team showed that change of the brain’s reward system activity at rest is correlated with a decrease in leptin resistance after bariatric surgery.

Source
Resting-state connectivity within the brain’s reward system predicts weight loss and correlates with leptin.

Schmidt L, Medawar E, Aron-Wisnewsky J, Genser L, Poitou C, Clément K, Plassmann H. Brain Commun. 2021 Feb

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MARIE SKLODOWSKA-CURIE ACTIONS: 3 RESEARCHERS FROM THE PARIS BRAIN INSTITUTE AWARDED https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/marie-sklodowska-curie-actions-paris-brain-institute/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/marie-sklodowska-curie-actions-paris-brain-institute/#respond Wed, 03 Mar 2021 11:06:42 +0000 Ignacio Colmenero https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=20930 The results of the prestigious European funding are in! 3 researchers from the Paris Brain Institute have been awarded.

The Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) For more information ]]> The results of the prestigious European funding are in! 3 researchers from the Paris Brain Institute have been awarded.

The Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) Fellowships are competitive excellence funding awarded to outstanding postdoctoral researchers and doctoral and post-doctoral training programmes. They are part of Horizon 2020, the EU’s framework programme for research and innovation.

With a total of €328 million, the EU supports the research of 1630 post-doctoral researchers across Europe. Among them are 3 researchers from the Paris Brain Institute. A 27% success rate for Paris Brain Institute (EU success rate is less than 13 % for LIF – Life Science Panel)

The Paris Brain Institute’s 2021 laureates are:

  • Alizée Lopez-Persem (supervisor: Emmanuelle Volle)
  • Kathleen Cho (supervisor: Alberto Bacci)
  • Sara Bizzotto (supervisor: Stéphanie Baulac)

Another exceptional year for the Paris Brain Institute’s young researchers. Congratulations to these very promising scientists, who will be pursuing cutting-edge neuroscience research at our Institute. ”

Prof. Alexis Brice, Director General of the Paris Brain Institute.

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Real-time dialogue between experimenters and dreamers during REM sleep https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/real-time-dialogue-between-experimenters-and-dreamers-during-rem-sleep/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/real-time-dialogue-between-experimenters-and-dreamers-during-rem-sleep/#respond Thu, 18 Feb 2021 16:22:37 +0000 Ignacio Colmenero https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=20861 Dreams take us to a different reality, a hallucinatory world that feels as real as any waking experience. These often-bizarre episodes are emblematic of human sleep For more information ]]> Dreams take us to a different reality, a hallucinatory world that feels as real as any waking experience. These often-bizarre episodes are emblematic of human sleep but have yet to be adequately explained. Retrospective dream reports are subject to distortion and forgetting, presenting a fundamental challenge for neuroscientific studies of dreaming. Here we show that individuals who are asleep and in the midst of a lucid dream (aware of the fact that they are currently dreaming) can perceive questions from an experimenter and provide answers using electrophysiological signals. We implemented our procedures for two-way communication during polysomnographically verified rapid-eye-movement (REM) sleep in 36 individuals. Some had minimal prior experience with lucid dreaming, others were frequent lucid dreamers, and one was a patient with narcolepsy who had frequent lucid dreams. During REM sleep, these individuals exhibited various capabilities, including performing veridical perceptual analysis of novel information, maintaining information in working memory, computing simple answers, and expressing volitional replies. Their responses included distinctive eye movements and selective facial muscle contractions, constituting correctly answered questions on 29 occasions across 6 of the individuals tested. These repeated observations of interactive dreaming, documented by four independent laboratory groups, demonstrate that phenomenological and cognitive characteristics of dreaming can be interrogated in real time. This relatively unexplored communication channel can enable a variety of practical applications and a new strategy for the empirical exploration of dreams.

Source

Real-time dialogue between experimenters and dreamers during REM sleep. Konkoly KR. et al. Current Biology, février 2021 DOI: https://www.cell.com/current-biology/fulltext/S0960-9822(21)00059-2

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International Education Day https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/international-education-day/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/international-education-day/#respond Mon, 25 Jan 2021 16:05:55 +0000 Ignacio Colmenero https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=20738 On the occasion of the third International Education Day, the Paris Brain Institute recalls its commitments and actions in the field of education and learning.  For more information ]]> On the occasion of the third International Education Day, the Paris Brain Institute recalls its commitments and actions in the field of education and learning. 

Since 2014, the Paris Brain Institute through its training organization, Open Brain School, has been innovating by offering unique programs with new pedagogical approaches.

What we know about the brain and how it works can be applied to much more than fighting neurological and psychiatric diseases. The brain is, in itself, the essence of who we are. Almost every aspect of our daily lives is directly related to neuroscience. The learning process itself can benefit from neuroscience-based knowledge.

The Paris Brain Institute runs various training programs with key results. The number of programs and participants is constantly growing with nearly 12 programs and 1500 participants in 2019.

Our goal is to provide training programs in cutting-edge research areas, new technologies, improve clinical and paramedical skills and refine multidisciplinary competencies. Also offering educational programs for all ages and all audiences, the Paris Brain Institute’s long-term goal is to contribute to the training of “neuro-citizens”.

For more information: openbrainschool.com

 

Focus: France Brain Bee, the neuroscience competition

 

On the occasion of the International Education Day, Open Brain School wishes to highlight its flagship education program for the youngest the “France Brain Bee”.

France Brain Bee is a neuroscience competition for middle and high school students. Students from secondary to high school can participate in this annual event. In addition to inspiring careers in neuroscience, the overall mission of the Brain Bee initiative is to educate students about the brain, its functions, and to dispel misconceptions about neurological and psychiatric diseases. Some schools have created neuroscience clubs with students who meet regularly to review knowledge in preparation for the national Brain Bee event.

Each year the winner of France Brain Bee has the honor to represent France for the International Brain Bee (IBB) competition. Thanks to a real international experience, this annual competition gives a chance to the participants to meet students passionated about neuroscience from all over the world. This year, the International Brain Bee (IBB), will take place in San Diego, USA.

 

https://openbrainschool.com/en/program/france-brain-bee/

 

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The Paris Brain Institute signs the ALBA declaration on equity and inclusion https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/paris-brain-institute-signs-alba-declaration-equity-and-inclusion/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/paris-brain-institute-signs-alba-declaration-equity-and-inclusion/#respond Fri, 22 Jan 2021 18:00:15 +0000 Ignacio Colmenero https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=20727 The Paris Brain Institute has endorsed the ALBA declaration on equity and inclusion, in its effort for more equity and inclusion in neurosciences.

By signing this For more information ]]> The Paris Brain Institute has endorsed the ALBA declaration on equity and inclusion, in its effort for more equity and inclusion in neurosciences.

By signing this declaration, the Paris Brain Institute is now part of network of more than 150 scientific organisations committed to more diversity and equity in the scientific world.

The ALBA Network gathers neuroscientists from all over the world with the objective to develop fair and inclusive scientific communities. It focuses on two obstacles to equity and inclusion: implicit biases and discriminatory workplace culture.

It is very important for the Paris Brain Institute to engage with the ALBA network for more diversity, inclusion and equity in science. Over the last years, together with our gender equity committee, we strengthen our commitment to these issues and hope to go even further by joining this network.”

Prof Alexis Brice, Executive director of the Paris Brain Institute.

 

The XX initiative, a grass root movement comprising all scientific personnel categories of the Paris Brain Institute, enabled the creation of the Gender equity committee. As we experienced locally, a collective coordination is necessary to move things forward. We are therefore very enthusiastic that the Institute, by joining the ALBA network, shares our equity ambitions.”

The gender equity committee of the Paris Brain Institute.

ALBA_Declaration

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Study confirms that SARS-CoV-2 can infect neurons https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/sars-cov-2-can-infect-neurons/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/sars-cov-2-can-infect-neurons/#respond Sat, 16 Jan 2021 09:03:20 +0000 Ines Haddad https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=20670 Although COVID-19 is considered to be primarily a respiratory disease, SARS-CoV-2 affects multiple organ systems including the central nervous system (CNS). Yet, For more information ]]> Although COVID-19 is considered to be primarily a respiratory disease, SARS-CoV-2 affects multiple organ systems including the central nervous system (CNS). Yet, there is no consensus on the consequences of CNS infections. Here, we used three independent approaches to probe the capacity of SARS-CoV-2 to infect the brain.

First, using human brain organoids, we observed clear evidence of infection with accompanying metabolic changes in infected and neighboring neurons. However, no evidence for type I interferon responses was detected. We demonstrate that neuronal infection can be prevented by blocking ACE2 with antibodies or by administering cerebrospinal fluid from a COVID-19 patient. Second, using mice overexpressing human ACE2, we demonstrate SARS-CoV-2 neuroinvasion in vivo.

3d by sheet imaging that shows the presence of the virus in the neurons of the olfactory bulb

Finally, in autopsies from patients who died of COVID-19, we detect SARS-CoV-2 in cortical neurons and note pathological features associated with infection with minimal immune cell infiltrates. These results provide evidence for the neuroinvasive capacity of SARS-CoV-2 and an unexpected consequence of direct infection of neurons by SARS-CoV-2.

Reference:

Neuroinvasion of SARS-CoV-2 in human and mouse brain, Eric Song, Ce Zhang, Benjamin Israelow, Alice Lu-Culligan, Alba Vieites Prado, Sophie Skriabine, Peiwen Lu, Orr-El Weizman, Feimei Liu, Yile Dai, Klara Szigeti-Buck, Yuki Yasumoto, Guilin Wang, Christopher Castaldi, Jaime Heltke, Evelyn Ng, John Wheeler, Mia Madel Alfajaro, Etienne Levavasseur, Benjamin Fontes, Neal G. Ravindra, David Van Dijk, Shrikant Mane, Murat Gunel, Aaron Ring, Syed A. Jaffar Kazmi, Kai Zhang, Craig B Wilen, Tamas L. Horvath, Isabelle Plu, Stephane Haik, Jean-Leon Thomas, Angeliki Louvi, Shelli F. Farhadian, Anita Huttner, Danielle Seilhean, Nicolas Renier, Kaya Bilguvar, Akiko Iwasaki, Journal of Experimental Medicine, January 2021.

J Exp Med (2021) 218 (3): e20202135.

https://doi.org/10.1084/jem.20202135

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New European alliance formed to tackle urgent challenge of neurodegenerative diseases https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/new-european-alliance-neurodegenerative-diseases/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/new-european-alliance-neurodegenerative-diseases/#respond Thu, 17 Dec 2020 15:01:38 +0000 Ignacio Colmenero https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=20497 Top research institutes from Germany, France, Belgium and the UK have formed a new alliance to combat neurodegenerative diseases. Their mission? Catalysing a United For more information ]]> Top research institutes from Germany, France, Belgium and the UK have formed a new alliance to combat neurodegenerative diseases. Their mission? Catalysing a United Response in Europe to Neurodegenerative Diseases, or CURE-ND for short.

Neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease, affect millions of people globally, with a significant impact on individuals, families, economies and wider society. Worldwide, around 50 million people have some form of dementia, and there are nearly 10 million new cases every year. Finding ways to prevent, treat and cure neurodegeneration is one of today’s most urgent medical needs.

Leading neuroscientists from four top European research institutes believe that collaboration is the best way forward to meet this challenge. The German Centre for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE), the Paris Brain Institute, Mission Lucidity in Belgium and the UK Dementia Research Institute have committed to share expertise and present a strong united voice to champion brain research and put an end to historic underfunding of the field in Europe.

Prof. Pierluigi Nicotera, Scientific Director of DZNE: “The added value of connecting the major European organizations that conduct research into neurodegeneration has become increasingly clear in recent years.” A new alliance is now born: CURE-ND. “With CURE-ND, we want to catalyse a united response in Europe to tackle these diseases.”

“Together, we represent a critical mass of more than 2000 researchers”, adds Prof. Alexis Brice, Director General of the Paris Brain Institute. “We have clear synergies and complementarities among our centres, which should allow a very efficient and powerful response. Our alliance embraces a joint effort to accelerate the pace of scientific discovery and nurture breakthroughs in the field of neurodegenerative diseases.”

Prof. Dr. Mathieu Vandenbulcke, Scientific Chairman of Mission Lucidity: “Our ambitious initiative ranges from uncovering disease mechanisms to improving clinical care. CURE-ND will facilitate the development and global implementation of neurotechnologies that enhance care for today’s and tomorrow’s patients.”

Besides bringing together excellent science to accelerate research and improve clinical care, CURE-ND aims to raise global awareness of the need to urgently address the challenge of neurodegenerative diseases, and to lobby for the necessary funding to be committed to research in this area. The partners are calling for a long-term vision and funding of brain research by Europe.

“Collaborating across borders to address neurodegeneration is more important than ever. With the ongoing pandemic, budget cuts in Horizon Europe and uncertainty around Brexit, I’m proud that these leading institutes are taking responsibility for driving forward much-needed progress. Now is the time to pull together, not pull apart”, concludes Prof. Bart De Strooper, Director of the UK Dementia Research Institute.

About DZNE

The German Centre for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE) investigates all aspects of neurodegenerative diseases in order to develop novel approaches of prevention, treatment and health care. The DZNE is comprised of ten sites across Germany and cooperates closely with universities, university hospitals, and other institutions on a national and international level. The DZNE is a member of the Helmholtz Association. www.dzne.de/en

About Mission Lucidity

Founded in 2018, Mission Lucidity is a partnership between four research institutes in Leuven, Belgium: imec, KU Leuven, UZ Leuven and VIB. Together, they aim to develop ground-breaking technologies to better understand, predict, diagnose and treat neurodegenerative diseases. www.missionlucidity.com 

About the Paris Brain Institute

Created in 2010, the Paris Brain Institute is a scientific and medical research centre of international excellence, located in Paris in the heart of the Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital. Its innovative model brings together patients, doctors, researchers and entrepreneurs in one place with a common goal: to understand the brain and accelerate the discovery of new treatments for diseases of the nervous system. The Institute thus includes a network of more than 700 researchers and clinicians, 10 cutting-edge technological platforms, 1 clinical investigation centre and more than 1,000m² for the incubation of start-ups. Since 2017, it has also been Station F’s health partner, giving it a competitive advantage in the field of connected healthcare. This year, the Paris Brain Institute celebrates its tenth anniversary. https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/

About the UK Dementia Research Institute

The UK Dementia Research Institute (UK DRI) is the single biggest investment in dementia research in the UK. Established in 2017 by its founding funders, the Medical Research Council, Alzheimer’s Society and Alzheimer’s Research UK, the £290 million institute is hosted across six leading UK universities: University of Cambridge, Cardiff University, University of Edinburgh, Imperial College London and King’s College London, with its central hub at UCL. The UK DRI works on ways to prevent, treat and care for people with all types of dementia, and ways to keep the brain healthy. www.ukdri.ac.uk

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New insights on a major protein involved in Alzheimer’s disease https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/new-insights-alzheimer-disease/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/new-insights-alzheimer-disease/#respond Wed, 16 Dec 2020 16:36:34 +0000 Ignacio Colmenero https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=20487 New study conducted by Irini Kessissoglou in the “Brain development” team headed by Bassem Hassan at Paris Brain Institute reveals new functions for the Amyloid For more information ]]> New study conducted by Irini Kessissoglou in the “Brain development” team headed by Bassem Hassan at Paris Brain Institute reveals new functions for the Amyloid Precursor Protein (APP) homologue in drosophila. Results are published in PLOS Biology.

The amyloid precursor protein (APP) is an essential protein, best known for its involvement in the pathway at the origin of amyloid beta, the component of the main lesion in Alzheimer’s disease (AD), the amyloid plaques. Mutations in the APP gene are linked with early-onset familial cases of AD. However, the physiological role of APP in adult brain function and whether there is any link between this normal role and defects seen in AD remains unclear. To address this issue, Kessissoglou et al. investigated the function of this protein in the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, a model organism often used in biomedical research which possesses a homologue of APP, called APPL (Amyloid precursor protein like).

Neurons, like all cells, possess a system called the endolysosomal recycling and degradation pathway for separating, recycling and, when necessary, trashing its proteins. This system guarantees protein and organelles balance neurons and it has been shown to be defective in human neurons with AD patient mutations, suggesting that APP may be be important for this process under normal conditions.

Using Drosophila model of APPL loss of function, the authors explored the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying the brain homeostasis, which can be defined as the physiological processes necessary to maintain brain health and restoring balance in case of injury or diseases.

They identified a pathway crucial for adult brain homeostasis involving APPL. Indeed, APPL loss of function leads in a disruption of the endolysosomal function in neurons followed by cell death. The dead neuronal cell, which are significantly increased with the loss of APPL, accumulate in the brain at early age. Moreover, not only did flies lacking APPL have a shorter lifespan and neurodegeneration by 30 days old (a middle-old age at the scale of a Drosophila), their brain also showed signs of dysfunctional homeostasis as early as 7 days old.

One key point of the study is the evidence that the extracellular domain of APPL secreted by neurons interacts with glial cells to regulate their endolysosomal pathway and enable the clearance of neuronal debris. Glial cells are key elements of brain homeostasis as they are involved in immune response, providing nutrients to neurons and clearance of cellular wastes. Overall, this suggest that APPL is part of a neuro-glial signaling system responsible for monitoring brain health.

The results of this study bring new insights on the role of APP in a physiological context and highlight its importance for adult brain homeostasis. The findings regarding the consequences of the loss of APP suggests a strong link between its physiological functions and the defects observed in familial cases of Alzheimer’s disease. The early effects observed in flies lacking APPL support the idea of long-term modifications in the brain occurring before the onset of clinical symptoms, fostering new research on early endosomes and neuro-glial interactions in this disease.

Source


The Drosophila amyloid precursor protein homologue mediates neuronal survival and neuroglial interactions.

Kessissoglou IA, Langui D, Hasan A, Maral M, Dutta SB, Hiesinger PR, Hassan BA.PLoS Biol. 2020 Dec 8

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the L’Oréal-UNESCO Foundation rewards Maha DAHAWI, doctoral student at the Paris Brain Institute https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/the-loreal-unesco-foundation-rewards-maha-dahawi-doctoral-student-at-the-paris-brain-institute/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/the-loreal-unesco-foundation-rewards-maha-dahawi-doctoral-student-at-the-paris-brain-institute/#respond Fri, 11 Dec 2020 09:21:28 +0000 Ignacio Colmenero https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=20443 The 2020 “Young Talents for Women and Science in Sub-Saharan Africa” prize from the L'Oréal-UNESCO Foundation rewards Maha DAHAWI, doctoral student at the Paris For more information ]]> The 2020 “Young Talents for Women and Science in Sub-Saharan Africa” prize from the L’Oréal-UNESCO Foundation rewards Maha DAHAWI, doctoral student at the Paris Brain Institute for her research carried out as a collaboration between France (Paris Brain Institute-Sorbonne Université ) under the supervision of Pr.Eric LEGUERN and Sudan (Faculty of Medicine -University of Khartoum ) under the supervision of Pr. Ammar ELTAHIR.

Maha DAHAWI is one of the 20 laureates selected among 330 candidates from 16 countries, and thanks to this prize, she will be able to continue and consolidate her work on the identification of genes responsible for generalized epilepsies in consanguineous families originating in Sudan within the team co-directed by Stéphanie BAULAC and Prof. Eric LEGUERN at the Brain Institute, and pursue her functional studies on C. Elegans as a collaboration with Nicolas BIZAT.

Before coming to France, she established “Pay It Forward at khartoum University for female medical students to help them overcoming different obstacles they face in science.

Maha is also a member of the XX-initiative for gender Equity of the Paris Brain Institute, she participated in the different seminars and training organized by the committee.

 

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Claire Wyart receives an ERC Consolidator Grant https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/claire-wyart-receives-an-erc-consolidator-grant/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/claire-wyart-receives-an-erc-consolidator-grant/#respond Wed, 09 Dec 2020 11:48:05 +0000 Ignacio Colmenero https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=20437 Claire Wyart, team leader at Paris Brain Institute obtains an ERC Consolidator grant, a competitive European funding, for the scientific excellence of her research For more information ]]> Claire Wyart, team leader at Paris Brain Institute obtains an ERC Consolidator grant, a competitive European funding, for the scientific excellence of her research project.

Her project “Exploratome” aims now to decipher the spatiotemporal structure of motor patterns by investigating how sensory inputs can induce switch in locomotor states.

Each year the European Research Council (ERC) encourages the best scientific projects through competitive calls for proposals open to all researchers in the European Community. The ERC Consolidator Grants are awarded to outstanding researchers with at least seven and up to twelve years of experience after PhD, and an excellent scientific track record.

Claire Wyart is an Inserm research director. She started her team “Optogenetic dissection of circuits underlying locomotion” at Paris Brain Institute in 2011. She received an ERC Starting grant in 2012 for her project “Optoloco” aiming to decipher the role of sensory feedback during locomotion. Her team discovered an interoceptive sensory pathway in contact with the cerebrospinal fluid that interacts with the Reissner fiber in the center of the spinal cord to detect curvature of the spine and that in turn modulates locomotion and posture. The Wyart team discovered that this sensory system also instructs morphogenesis and tastes the content of the cerebrospinal fluid in order to detect and combat pathogens during infections of the central nervous system.

 

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Discovery of a plasma signature of fronto-temporal degeneration and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis linked to a mutation of the C9orf72 gene https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/als-dft-mutation-c9orf72-gene/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/als-dft-mutation-c9orf72-gene/#respond Thu, 26 Nov 2020 09:10:06 +0000 Ignacio Colmenero https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=20373 A joint study by teams from the Paris Brain Institute at the Pitié-Salpêtrière hospital and from Inria (Rennes and Paris centers) has revealed for the first-time For more information ]]> A joint study by teams from the Paris Brain Institute at the Pitié-Salpêtrière hospital and from Inria (Rennes and Paris centers) has revealed for the first-time plasma microRNA signatures in individuals with or presymptomatic of fronto-temporal degeneration or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. The discovery of this potential new biomarker, published in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry, represents an important step forward in assessing the clinical progression of patients and the efficacy of future treatment candidates in therapeutic trials.

Frontotemporal degeneration (FTD) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) are neurodegenerative diseases that may have a common genetic cause, the most common of which is a mutation in the c9orf72 gene. DFTs cause behavioural, language, and emotional control disorders and affect cognitive, reasoning, and judgment abilities. ALS, on the other hand, is a disease of the motor neurons leading to muscle weakness and progressive paralysis.

At present, there is no treatment for these two pathologies. The identification of specific markers of the progression of these pathologies is essential in order to best adapt patient management and evaluate the efficacy of treatment in clinical trials. To this end, the PREV-DEMALS* study, coordinated by Dr. Isabelle Le Ber, is following 22 patients with the c9orf72 mutation, 45 presymptomatic individuals with the mutation and 43 control subjects.

A specificity of these pathologies associated with the c9orf72 mutation is the presence of pathological inclusions consisting of the TDP-43 protein in the brain of patients. TDP-43 plays an important role in the formation of microRNAs (miRNAs), small fragments of genetic material that regulate gene expression. Could the formation of these inclusions in patients’ brains have an effect on miRNA synthesis?

The association of these miRNAs with many neurodegenerative diseases is increasingly suspected. The possibility of measuring their presence in blood plasma makes them all the more interesting as potential biomarkers of the evolution of these diseases.

A collaborative study** conducted by the teams of Isabelle Le Ber (AP-HP) and Olivier Colliot (CNRS, joint team with Inria Paris) at the Paris Brain Institute (Inserm/CNRS/Sorbonne University) and with Emmanuelle Becker at Inria Rennes (IRISA, Dyliss team), as part of Virgilio Kmetzsch’s thesis work, focused on miRNAs present in the plasma of subjects in the PREV-DEMALS cohort.

The researchers identified 4 miRNAs expressed differently between patients and control subjects. Two were over-expressed in patients, while two were under-expressed. One of the two over-expressed miRNAs, MiR-34a-5p, was also over-expressed in presymptomatic subjects, suggesting deregulation of this miRNA associated with the c9orf72 mutation. The second, miR-345-5p, was more expressed in patients compared to presymptomatic subjects, suggesting a correlation between disease progression and increased miRNA expression. The two under-expressed miRNAs were, however, associated with an already fully established pathology. In addition, 4 presymptomatic individuals near the clinical onset of the disease had miRNA expression levels very similar to those of the patients, also showing the value of this signature in determining the timing of clinical conversion.

Taken together, these results highlight for the first time a miRNA transcriptomic signature specific to the presymptomatic and symptomatic stage of FTD/ALS associated with a mutation in the C9orf72 gene. This signature could constitute an important biomarker in these diseases, in particular in the transition to the clinical phase. It could also be used for the initiation and monitoring of therapies administered at an early stage, as early as the presymptomatic phase.

* The PREV-DEMALS cohort is funded by ANR/DGOS PRTS and under AP-HP promotion. Patient follow-up is carried out at the Institute of Memory and Alzheimer’s Disease at the Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital AP-HP and at the Clinical Investigation Center at the Paris Brain Institute.

** This research is conducted as part of the IPL Neuromarkers project, a large-scale collaboration between Inria and the Paris Brain Institute, whose objective is to develop new computational and statistical approaches for the prediction and study of the evolution of neurodegenerative diseases.

Source

Plasma microRNA signature in presymptomatic and symptomatic subjects with C9orf72-associated frontotemporal dementia and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Kmetzsch V. et al. Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry. 2020

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Stanley Durrleman, winner of the Inria – Young researcher Prize of the French Academy of Sciences https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/stanley-durrleman-inria-academy-sciences/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/stanley-durrleman-inria-academy-sciences/#respond Tue, 24 Nov 2020 12:30:45 +0000 Ignacio Colmenero https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=20363 Stanley Durrleman, co-leader of the "ARAMIS - Algorithms, Models and Methods for Images and Signals of the Human Brain" team at the Paris Brain Institute, received For more information ]]> Stanley Durrleman, co-leader of the “ARAMIS – Algorithms, Models and Methods for Images and Signals of the Human Brain” team at the Paris Brain Institute, received the Inria Young researcher prize from the French Academy of Sciences for his work.

This €20,000 prize rewards the work of Stanley Durrleman and his team on the development of statistical learning methods and the design of predictive models of the evolution of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s. He has developed algorithms capable of predicting the progression of Alzheimer’s disease in patients over the next four years. This tool could play a key role in evaluating the effectiveness of therapeutics for neurodegenerative diseases.

I am very honoured to receive this prestigious award. It is recognition of work that has been built at the frontier between several disciplines: mathematics, computer science, neuroscience and medicine. We are now looking to use our tools to help demonstrate the effectiveness of promising treatments by administering them at the right time to the right patient. ”

Stanley Durrleman

 

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MAKING SENSE OF THE WORLD: THE CEREBRAL BASES OF ABSTRACTION https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/cerebral-bases-abstraction/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/cerebral-bases-abstraction/#respond Thu, 19 Nov 2020 13:40:40 +0000 Ignacio Colmenero https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=20340 A study conducted at the Zuckerman Institute of Columbia University (USA) by Jerome Munuera, co-first author and researcher at the Paris Brain Institute, and his For more information ]]> A study conducted at the Zuckerman Institute of Columbia University (USA) by Jerome Munuera, co-first author and researcher at the Paris Brain Institute, and his collaborators, led to the development of the first functional model of abstraction in the brain. The results are published in the prestigious journal Cell.

The curse of dimensionality plagues models of reinforcement learning and decision making. The process of abstraction solves this by constructing variables describing features shared by different instances, reducing dimensionality and enabling generalization in novel situations. Here, we characterized neural representations in monkeys performing a task described by different hidden and explicit variables. Abstraction was defined operationally using the generalization performance of neural decoders across task conditions not used for training, which requires a particular geometry of neural representations. Neural ensembles in prefrontal cortex, hippocampus, and simulated neural networks simultaneously represented multiple variables in a geometry reflecting abstraction but that still allowed a linear classifier to decode a large number of other variables (high shattering dimensionality). Furthermore, this geometry changed in relation to task events and performance. These findings elucidate how the brain and artificial systems represent variables in an abstract format while preserving the advantages conferred by high shattering dimensionality.

Source

The Geometry of Abstraction in the Hippocampus and Prefrontal Cortex. Bernardi S, Benna MK, Rigotti M, Munuera J, Fusi S, Salzman CD. Cell. 2020 Oct 9

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Healthy Mind and Uptale selected for STATION F’s Future 40 ranking https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/healthy-mind-uptale-stationf/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/healthy-mind-uptale-stationf/#respond Wed, 18 Nov 2020 16:00:20 +0000 Ignacio Colmenero https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=20350 On November 18, Station F unveiled the second edition of its Future 40 ranking. 2 startups hosted in our incubator iPEPS -The Healthtech Hub are included: Healthy For more information ]]> On November 18, Station F unveiled the second edition of its Future 40 ranking. 2 startups hosted in our incubator iPEPS -The Healthtech Hub are included: Healthy Mind and Uptale.

These start-ups were chosen among the 1.000 companies of STATION F according to different criteria such as their size and growth, their innovative technology, their expertise or their team.

Healthy Mind

Healthy Mind is a startup offering virtual therapies to relieve the pain and anxiety of hospitalized patients.

By combining neuroscience, psychology and virtual reality technologies, the company has developed and commercialized two products:

  • a virtual reality solution that uses the processing power of a computer to deliver real-time experiences while providing in-depth customization and personalized medical hypnosis features to healthcare professionals
  • a completely autonomous solution focused on on the friendliness, the user experience and the ergonomics.

Uptale

Uptale is developing a training solution for companies using immersive learning. The startup deploys a cloud platform using virtual reality at scale and neurotechnologies to create and deliver 360° training.

The different modules made available to companies allow reinforcing the skills of operational teams, improving the onboarding of new employees or creating empathy in different situations.

 

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A new custom-made multi-photon microscope at the Paris Brain Institute https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/custom-made-multi-photon-microscope/ https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/custom-made-multi-photon-microscope/#respond Wed, 04 Nov 2020 15:39:00 +0000 Ignacio Colmenero https://institutducerveau-icm.org/?post_type=actualite&p=20260 The Paris Brain Institute has acquired a new state-of-the-art multi-photon microscope thanks to the support of the Edmond J. Safra Foundation. This custom-built For more information ]]> The Paris Brain Institute has acquired a new state-of-the-art multi-photon microscope thanks to the support of the Edmond J. Safra Foundation. This custom-built microscope will enable several teams at the Institute to carry out highly advanced explorations on multiple scales.

For the past few weeks, the Paris Brain Institute has been equipped with a new multi-photon microscope, tailored to the needs of its researchers, thanks to the support of the Edmond J. Safra Foundation, which, along with its Chairwoman, Mrs. Lily Safra, is among the most significant donors to the Institute.

The multi-photon microscope is an instrument that allows scientists to acquire images deep inside the brain of a still developing animal, or while it is performing a behavioural task. This type of instrument is essential for establishing links between brain activity and behaviour.

Because each type of experience is unique, a multi-photon microscope must be versatile and customizable. By working with Bruker, a leading company specializing in the construction of these devices, the experts of the Paris Brain Institute have designed instruments that meet their needs.

Two pulsed infrared lasers, two very sensitive detectors, custom-made microscope stand, and the swivel objective allow a great freedom on the type of samples visualized and experimental conditions. This microscope is particularly well suited for studies in drosophila but can also be used in behavioral studies in zebrafish and mice, conducted by several teams at the Paris Brain Institute. » Basile Gurchenkov, operational manager of the ICM.quant cell imaging platform.

 

ICM.quant Biomimaging core facility : https://quant.institutducerveau-icm.org

 

 

Several teams at the Paris Brain Institute have developed new research projects, using mice and fruit flies, based on special behavioral tests of very high level. The multi-photon microscope represents a major and absolutely essential piece of equipment for the Brain Institute.

Developmental and behavioral imaging work involves long-term experiments, in which each manipulation can occupy the instrument for several hours and sometimes up to 24 hours at a time. The acquisition of this equipment, thanks to the support of the Edmond J. Safra Foundation, provides a real impetus for the advancement of research, in particular our project to understand the cerebral bases of our individuality.“Bassem Hassan, team leader and scientific director of the Paris Brain Institute

I am very proud to make this new contribution to the Paris Brain Institute. I am confident that this cutting-edge equipment, in the hands of the Institute’s remarkable researchers, will lead to important advances in the quest for a fuller understanding of brain diseases.” Mrs. Lily Safra, Chairwoman of the Edmond J. Safra Foundation and Honorary Chairwoman of the Association of Friends of the Paris Brain Institute.

EMERGENCE OF BEHAVIORAL INDIVIDUALITY IN THE FLY’S BRAIN: A GENERAL PRINCIPLE FOR THE NEURODEVELOPMENTAL ORIGIN OF AN ASPECT OF PERSONALITY?

https://institutducerveau-icm.org/en/actualite/emergence-of-behavioral-individuality/

 

 

About the Edmond J. Safra Foundation

Edmond J. Safra, one of the 20th century’s most accomplished bankers and a devoted philanthropist, established a major philanthropic foundation to ensure that individuals and organizations would continue to receive his assistance and encouragement for many years to come. Under the chairmanship of his beloved wife Lily, the Edmond J. Safra Foundation draws continuing inspiration from its founder’s life and values. It has supported hundreds of organizations in more than 40 countries around the world, largely in its three main areas of focus: education, science and medicine, and religious life. In 2005, it enabled the creation of the Paris Brain Institute by financing the construction of its research building. Even today, its generous loyalty allows researchers to continue their fight against diseases of the nervous system. www.edmondjsafra.org

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