⇨  Teams  ⇨  Physiology of neural networks


Antoine Valera (CRCN)

Motor control involves many brain structures that manage different aspects of behavior such as planning, learning and executing movements.

The cerebellum, a key structure for the coordination of movements and motor learning, is widely connected to numerous structures such as the neocortex or the brainstem. How the cerebellum influences these targets depends on the calculations made at its output layer, the Cerebellar Nuclei (CN). This small structure integrates information from the entire cerebellar cortex, but also extracerebellar inputs.

The integration mechanisms and population coding in NCs are not well understood, as technological and experimental difficulties have limited our ability to study information processing there, both at the cellular and population levels. of neurons.

  1. My research project, funded in particular by the ERC CereCode, will address fundamental questions limiting our understanding of the control of movements by the cerebellum. What is the functional connectivity in the CN network and how are sensorimotor inputs from different parts of the brain integrated?
  2. How are CN sensorimotor calculations represented at the population level? Are there functional modules controlling stereotyped movements or are different tasks encoded within the same population?
  3. What is the individual role of different extracerebellar inputs during behavior?

My project will combine recent discoveries on the neurophysiology of NCs, viral tracing techniques, optogenetics and new imaging tools based on 3D two-photon acousto-optic lens imaging and GRIN lenses. These tools will allow the study of both synaptic integration and activity at the population level in vitro and in vivo.

Team members
Anthime Perrot (doctorant)

Anthime Perrot is carrying out a thesis under the supervision of Dr. Antoine Valera. His work aims to explore the integration and encoding of information in the cerebellar nuclei. A first part of his project is devoted to the study of the synaptic properties of extra-cerebellar inputs (mossy fibers, climbing fibers) via electrophysiology and 2-photon imaging approaches. The second part of his thesis focuses on the roles of these collaterals during learning and motor execution in vivo.

  • Angus Silver (University College London, UK)
  • David Digregorio (Institut Pasteur, Paris, France)
  • Nelson Rebola (ICM, Paris, France)
Selected publications

Precompensation of 3D field distortions in remote focus two-photon microscopy.
Valera AM, Neufeldt FC, Kirkby PA, Mitchell JE, Silver RA. Biomed Opt Express, 2021 Jun 1;12(6):3717-3728. doi: 10.1364/BOE.425588. eCollection 2021 Jun 1. PMID: 34221690

Real-time 3D movement correction for two-photon imaging in behaving animals.
Griffiths VA, Valera AM, Lau JY, Roš H, Younts TJ, Marin B, Baragli C, Coyle D, Evans GJ, Konstantinou G, Koimtzis T, Nadella KMNS, Punde SA, Kirkby PA, Bianco IH, Silver RA. Nat Methods, 2020 Jul;17(7):741-748. doi: 10.1038/s41592-020-0851-7. Epub 2020 Jun 1. PMID: 32483335

Stereotyped spatial patterns of functional synaptic connectivity in the cerebellar cortex.
Valera AM, Binda F, Pawlowski SA, Dupont JL, Casella JF, Rothstein JD, Poulain B, Isope P. Elife, 2016 Mar 16;5:e09862. doi: 10.7554/eLife.09862. PMID: 26982219

Adaptation of granule cell to Purkinje cell synapses to high-frequency transmission.
Valera AM, Doussau F, Poulain B, Barbour B, Isope P. J Neurosci, 2012 Feb 29;32(9):3267-80. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.3175-11.2012. PMID: 22378898

Clusters of cerebellar Purkinje cells control their afferent climbing fiber discharge.
Chaumont J, Guyon N, Valera AM, Dugué GP, Popa D, Marcaggi P, Gautheron V, Reibel-Foisset S, Dieudonné S, Stephan A, Barrot M, Cassel JC, Dupont JL, Doussau F, Poulain B, Selimi F, Léna C, Isope P. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 2013 Oct 1;110(40):16223-8. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1302310110. Epub 2013 Sep 17. PMID: PMID: 24046366