The scientific core of our research program is to study the exact nature of the processing that the basal ganglia (BG) apply to cortical information with three perspectives: 1) improve our fundamental knowledge of the cerebral mechanisms of information processing; 2) better understand the pathophysiology of human diseases which are related to BG dysfunction; and 3) develop innovative treatments for neuropsychiatric refractory disorders notably by means of the deep brain stimulation (DBS) functional neurosurgery. This research is based on a confrontation between phenomenological and psychopathological studies of disturbances involving the BG and the electrophysiological, neuroimaging and anatomical studies of these structures.
This research program is carried out in patients with Parkinson Disease, Tourette Syndrome, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Depression, Cocaine Dependence. Changes in the neuronal activity of BG and related cortical areas provoked by emotional or cognitive processing are examined by using dedicated experiments by means of electrophysiology and neuroimaging techniques. Precise anatomical localization of both electrophysiological and imaging data are performed using a validated 3D deformable atlas, allowing to model the circuits implicated and their interactions in these processes.