Developmental mechanisms of brain disorders



Research center

17 rue du Fer à Moulin
75005 Paris


Université Pierre et Marie Curie
Université Pierre et Marie Curie


Coutures Marianne
Phone: 33(0) 1 45 87 61 28
Fax: 33(0)145 87 61 35
UMRS 839


axon guidance
Neural activity
Critical periods


Fernandez SP, Muzerelle A, Scotto-Lomassese S, Barik J, Gruart A, Delgado-García JM, Gaspar P. Constitutive and Acquired Serotonin Deficiency Alters Memory and Hippocampal Synaptic Plasticity. Neuron. 2016 Oct 19;92(2):435-448. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2016.09.020. 

Muzerelle A, Scotto-Lomassese S, Bernard JF, Soiza-Reilly M, Gaspar P. (2014) Conditional anterograde tracing reveals distinct targeting of individual serotonin cell groups (B5-B9) to the forebrain and brainstem. Brain Struct Funct. 2014 Nov 18

 Assali A, Gaspar P, Rebsam A. Activity dependent mechanisms of visual map formation--from retinal waves to molecular regulators. Semin Cell Dev Biol. 2014 Nov;35:136-46 

Luccardini C, Hennekinne L, Viou L, Yanagida M, Murakami F, Kessaris N, Ma X,  Adelstein RS, Mège RM, Métin C. ( 2013) N-cadherin sustains motility and polarity of future cortical interneurons during tangential migration. J Neurosci. 2013 Nov 13;33(46):18149-60.

Diaz S.L*, Narboux-Nême N*, Trowbridge S,  Scotto, S, Borgemann FK, Jessberger S, Giros B , Maroteaux L, Deneris E, Gaspar P (2013) Paradoxical increased survival of newborn neurons in the dentate gyrus of mice with constitutive depletion of serotonin. Eur J Neuroscience. 38:2650-8.

Baudoin_ JP*, Viou* L, Launay P-S, Luccardini C, Espeso S, Kiyasova V, Irinopoulou T , Alvarez C,  Rio J-P, Boudier T, Lechaire J-P, Kessaris N,  Spassky N, Métin C. (2012) Tangentially migrating neurons assemble a primary cilium that promotes their re-orientation to the cortical plate. Neuron , 20;76 :1108-22. (* equal contribution).

Narboux-Nême N, Evrard A, Ferezou I, Erzurumlu RS, Kaeser PS, Lainé J, RossierJ, Ropert N, Südhof TC, Gaspar P. (2012) Neurotransmitter release at the thalamocortical synapse instructs barrel formation but not axon patterning in the somatosensory cortex. J Neurosci., 32:6183-6196.

Rebsam A, Bhansali P, Mason CA (2012) Eye-specific projections of retinogeniculate axons are altered in albino mice. J Neurosci  32(14): 4821-6

Narboux-Nême N, Angenard G, Mosienko V, Klempin F, Pitychoutis PM, Deneris E, Bader M, Giros B, Alenina N, Gaspar P. (2013) Postnatal growth defects in mice with constitutive depletion of central serotonin. ACS Chem Neurosci. ;4:171-81

Fields of research

Neurogenetics / neurodevelopment

Research Theme

A number of developmental disorders, in particular in the field of psychiatry and neurology, are thought to result from brain wiring defects. This is the case for mental retardation or autism-spectrum disorders, but also concerns non-cognitive pathologies such as visual defects in albinism. Formation of brain circuits is a complex process implying many sequential steps from the generation of neurons, their migration and axonal growth, and the establishment of selective synaptic connections. Refinement and consolidation of neural circuits continue during late periods of development, after birth, when the brain is the most plastic and likely to be modified by the environment with lasting effects on behaviour. Research in the team aims to understand the molecular mechanisms underlying the formation of brain circuits, along 3 main themes :

1° Migration of cortical interneurons : this theme is led by Christine Métin, focusing on the role of sonic hedgehog in cilia , using advanced live imaging methods.

2° Development of retinal visual pathways : this theme is led by Alexandra Rebsam focusing on the role of axon guidance molecules, neural activity and and neurotransmission in the establishment of visual maps. For more information,

3° Development of serotonin systems : this theme is led by Patricia Gaspar, focusing on the development of raphe and prefrontal cortical circuits influenced by serotonin and the effects of early life stress.

ENP Students


Team members

Delphine PRIEUR
Alexandra REBSAM

Lab rotation

Signaling in cortical interneurons migrating in vitro

Team leader: 

GASPAR Patricia


September 1, 2016 - December 31, 2016

Application deadline: 

September 1, 2016

Lab rotation proposal:

~ Sep-Dec 2016 ~ Jan-March 2017 ~ Apr-June 2017


The aim of the project is to analyze calcium signaling in the cell body (centrosome and nuclear region) of migrating embryonic GABA neurons. GABAergic neurons born in the medial ganglionic eminence exhibit different types of morphologies and migratory behaviors in vitro. We wish to know if specific calcium transients are associated with distinct migratory behaviors. Calcium signaling will be monitored and analyzed in living GABA neurons from the basal telencephalon cultured on a permissive substrate of migration.

Address: Institut du Fer à Moulin - 17, rue du Fer à Moulin 75005 PARIS

Phone number: + 33 1 45 87 61 28 ;



Christine METIN