Neural Processing, Neuromodulation and sensory plasticity

Leader

Research center

1 avenue de la Terrasse1 avenue de la Terrasse
91190 Gif-sur-Yvette
Yves Frégnac

Institution

CNRS
Université Paris Sud
ED158 - 3C ED FDV
Université Pierre et Marie Curie

Laboratory

Phone: 01 69 82 34 00
UPR3293
Idex NeuroSaclay - Equipe FRM
Available to host a PhD student

publications

Estebanez, L.#, Bertherat, J.#, Shulz, D.E.#, Bourdieu, L. and Léger, J. F. (2016) A radial map of multi-whisker correlation selectivity in the rat barrel cortex. Nature Communications DOI: 10.1038/ncomms13528

Perronnet L#, Vilarchao ME#, Hucher G, Shulz DE#, Peyré G, Ferezou I.#(2015) An automated workflow for the anatomo-functional mapping of the barrel cortex J Neurosci Methods doi:10.1016/j.jneumeth.2015.09.008.

Boubenec, Y.#, Claverie, N., Shulz, D.E.# and Debregeas, G. (2014) An amplitude modulation/demodulation scheme for whisker-based texture perception. J. Neuroscience, 34:10832–10843.

Arduin P-J.#, Frégnac Y., Shulz D.E.# & Ego-Stengel V.# (2014) Bidirectional control of a one-dimensional robotic actuator by operant conditioning of a single unit in rat motor cortex. Frontiers in Neuroscience (Neuroprosthetics) Vol. 8/206 : 1-15.

Arduin, P.J.#, Frégnac, Y., Shulz, D.E.# and Ego-Stengel, V.#, (2013). "Master" neurons induced by operant conditioning in rat motor cortex during a brain-machine interface task. J. Neuroscience. 33:8308–8320.

Fields of research

Neurophysiology / systems neuroscience

Research Theme

The Team is specialized in integrative neuroscience. Using the barrel cortex of rodents as a system model, our research is centered on the study of neuronal processes responsible for the coding of tactile sensory information and perception, as well as their regulation through the interaction of the animal with the environment. We are interested in the propagation and integration of neuronal information in the primary somatosensory cortex and subcortical somatosensory relays, and the emergence of collective properties in response to spatially distributed stimuli on the receptor surface. In addition, we study the functional and synaptic adaptation within the framework of Hebbian and non-Hebbian plasticity algorithms. We include in this research the study of permissive factors linked to the attentional and behavioral state of the animal which are mediated by ascending neuromodulatory systems. Our research involves a combination of cutting edge techniques (multi-electrode electrophysiology, functional imaging (VSD), optogenetics, multiple-whisker stimulation, behaviour) in acute and chronically implanted preparations.

Lab rotation

Brain-Machine Interface based on operant conditioning of neural activity in the head-fixed mouse

Chercheur responsable: 

SHULZ Daniel

Dates: 

2 January 2018 - 29 June 2018

Date limite de candidature: 

29 June 2018

Period

~ Jan-March 2018 (to be discussed)

~ April-June 2018

Project

Our team is interested in neuronal mechanisms of sensory processing and learning in the sensorimotor whisker system of the rodent. This project focuses on the impact of somatosensory feedback in learning a motor task, using a Brain-Machine Interface set-up. Recently, we have demonstrated that operant conditioning of the firing rate of a single cortical neuron is a successful strategy to control an actuator bringing a reward to the rat mouth (Arduin et al, 2013, J Neurosci). We have now built a new setup incorporating sensory feedback in the control loop of the neuroprosthesis, by stimulating optogenetically neurons in the barrel cortex of the head-fixed mouse. We have just started investigating whether the performance of the animals is improved when somatosensory feedback is provided to the brain-machine interface, in particular when we apply biomimetic patterns similar to natural spatio-temporal sequences of whisker movements. The student will be involved in training the animals and analyzing electrophysiology data from the operant conditioning task. 

Contact

Unité de Neurosciences Information et Complexité (UNIC) - 1 Avenue de la Terrasse, Bât. 33, 91198 Gif-sur-Yvette, France - +33 1 69 82 34 46 - Valerie.Ego-Stengel@unic.cnrs-gif.fr 

Superviseur: 

EGO-STENGEL Valérie

Ensemble recordings in the somatosensory system of the rat after learning of a discrimination task

Chercheur responsable: 

SHULZ Daniel

Dates: 

18 September 2017 - 29 December 2017

Date limite de candidature: 

29 December 2017

Period

~ Sept-Dec 2017

Project

This project concerns the thalamocortical integration of tactile stimuli in the rat. We developed an active vibrissal task in a T-like maze, in which rats have to palpate code-bar-like textures with their whiskers in order to choose a reward site among two. Multi-electrode implantation in the barrel cortex and the thalamus allows us to examine the spiking activity of a large population of neurons, in the anesthetized animal after learning. We aim to identify unique spike patterns coding for the particular stimuli used in the discrimination task. The student will be involved in the acute recordings and in the analysis of electrophysiological signals. 

Contact

Unité de Neurosciences Information et Complexité (UNIC) - 1 Avenue de la Terrasse, Bât. 33, 91198 Gif-sur-Yvette - +33 1 69 82 34 46 - Valerie.Ego-Stengel@unic.cnrs-gif.fr

Superviseur: 

EGO-STENGEL Valérie

Fribroscopy for large scale imaging of cortical dynamics during active sensing in freely behaving mice.

Chercheur responsable: 

SHULZ Daniel

Dates: 

18 September 2017 - 30 March 2018

Date limite de candidature: 

30 March 2018

Period

~ Sept-Dec 2017

~ Jan-March 2018

Project

Our research is centered on the study of neuronal processes responsible for the coding of tactile sensory information and perception, as well as their regulation through the interaction of the animal with the environment.  To understand the mechanisms responsible for the extraction of emergent properties of complex multi-whisker tactile stimulation in awake animals, it is essential to link the recording of cortical dynamics and the animal's behavior.  

We aim to work with freely moving mice in conditions allowing the development of an operant conditioning task where the mice have to extract the global properties of an object through the use of their whiskers.  

We will study the cortical dynamics during the task at the mesoscopic scale by using voltage sensitive dye imaging, which offers excellent spatial and temporal resolution through a flexible fiber bundle interface.  The student will be involved in setting up freely moving imaging experiments on a custom-made behavioral tactile maze. 

Contact

Unité de Neurosciences Information et Complexité (UNIC)  - 1, Avenue de la Terrasse, Bât. 33, 91198 Gif-sur-Yvette - +33 1 69 82 34 02 - Isabelle.ferezou@unic.cnrs-gif.fr 


Superviseur: 

FEREZOU Isabelle