Groupe Développement des circuits neuronaux


Research center

26 rue d'Ulm
75005 Paris
Geneviève Almouzni


Institut Curie
Université Pierre et Marie Curie


Virginie Bourgeois
Phone: 01 56 24 68 29
U934 - UMR3215
Labex DEEP

Mots clefs

neural circuits
Available to host a PhD student


Di Donato V, De Santis F, Auer TO, Testa N, Sánchez-Iranzo H, Mercader N, Concordet JP, Del Bene F. 2C-Cas9: a versatile tool for clonal analysis of gene function.Genome Res. 2016 May;26(5):681-92. doi: 10.1101/gr.196170.115. Epub 2016 Mar 8. 

Dunn TW, Gebhardt C, Naumann EA, Riegler C, Ahrens MB, Engert F, Del Bene F. Neural circuits underlying visually evoked escapes in larval zebrafish Neuron Accepted

Auer TO, Xiao T, Bercier V, Gebhardt C, Duroure K, Concordet JP, Wyart C, Suster M, Kawakami K, Wittbrodt J, Baier H, Del Bene F. Deletion of Kinesin I motor unmasks a mechanism of homeostatic branching control by Neurtrophin-3. eLIFE 2015 Jun 15;4.

Auer TO, Duroure K, Concordet JP, Del Bene F CRISPR/Cas9-mediated conversion of eGFP into Gal4 transgenic lines in zebrafish. Nature Protocols 2014 Dec;9(12):2823-40.

Auer TO, Duroure K, De Cian A, Concordet JP, Del Bene F (2014) Highly efficient CRISPR/Cas9-mediated knock-in in zebrafish by homology-independent DNA repair. Genome research 24: 142-153

Del Bene F#, Wyart C#, Robles E, Tran A, Looger L, Scott EK, Isacoff EY, Baier H (2010) Filtering of visual information in the tectum by an identified neural circuit. Science 330: 669-673

Fields of research

Neurogenetics / neurodevelopment

Research Theme

The optic tectum has emerged as a tractable visuomotor transformer, in which anatomical and functional studies can allow a better understanding of how behavior is controlled by neuronal circuits. We are examining the formation and function of the visual system in zebrafish larvae using in vivo time-lapse microscopy and state-of-the-art “connectomic” and “optogenetic” approaches to monitor and perturb neuronal activity. We apply complementary cellular and molecular analyses to dissect this circuit and identify the neuronal substrate of visual behaviors. We are analyzing the function, development and connectivity of a newly characterized class of inhibitory interneurons located in the superficial part of the tectal neuropil named SINs (superficial inhibitory interneurons) that I have previously identified. Our work based on functional imaging has placed SINs at the center of a tectal micro-circuit for size tuning of visual stimuli. We are dissecting this working model by analysing the physiological properties of SINs. We also are investigating their development and connectivity at the level of single synapses by imaging these cells in vivo using fluorescent reporters in transgenic animals. We are interested in how SINs migrate to their final position in the superficial tectum away from the zone where they are initially generated and how their processes direct tectal synaptic lamina formation. Our multidisciplinary approach aims to describe in great detail the formation and function of a neuronal circuit crucial for visual function, establishing this model for neural circuits studies in vertebrates.

Etudiants ENP


Membres de l'équipe

Karine Duroure
Thomas Auer
Christoph Gebhardt
Vincenzo Di Donato
Flavia De Santis
Celine Revenu
Shahad Albadri
Noe Testa

Lab rotation

Function of an interhemispheric neural circuit in zebrafish visual system

Chercheur responsable: 

DEL BENE Filippo


1 September 2016 - 31 December 2016

Date limite de candidature: 

1 September 2016

Lab rotation proposal: 3 months 

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


A salient feature of the nervous system of all bilateral animals is the existence of commissural neurons (CNs) reaching from one side to the other and enabling sensory integration as well as motor coordination from the two sides. In the mammalian visual system the parallel existence of crossed and uncrossed pathways from the eyes to the brain is usually considered a prerequisite for neural circuits underlying this binocular computation. Zebrafish larvae eyes, although situated at the side of the head, can converge to generate a substantial binocular visual field potentially used for object-distance estimation. However, the zebrafish larva has entirely crossed projections from the eyes to the visual brain. The generation of neuronal binocular responses at this connectional level, as is the case e.g. in mammals, is thus unlikely and integration of the visual information between the two halves of the optic tectum must rely on a different neural substrate.Recently, we presented a possible solution to this problem by genetically labeling a not before described commissural neuron population interconnecting the tectal hemispheres. We will take advantage of our in-house transgenic lines to elucidate the physiological function of these neurons within the tectal circuit and their contribution to binocular information integration.

AddressInstitut Curie - 26, rue d'Ulm 75248 PARIS Cedex 05

Phone number:  +33 1 56 24 65 52 ; Email:



Filippo DEL BENE & Christoph GEBHARDT