Équipe P. Delmas

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CNRS Neurobiologist Awarded Prestigious Research (...)

To say the competition for the 2014 International Human Frontier Science Program Organization (HFSPO) Research Grants was fierce would be a massive understatement.
In fact, when the process began more than a year ago, 892 letters of intent were submitted from researchers all over the world. Applicants went through a rigorous year-long selection process and when all was said and done, only 24 program grants were selected to receive awards.
Among this year’s program grant recipients is an intercontinental team, consisting of Dr Patrick Delmas, Research Director at the CNRS in The Center of Neurobiology and Neurophysiology of Marseille ; Dr Claire Wyart of The French Brain and Spine Institute in Paris, and Dr Katharine Lewis, associate professor of biology in The College of Arts and Sciences, Syracuse University, NY. Roughly $35 million will be awarded to this year’s recipients. HFSPO collaborative research grants are given for a diverse array of projects under the umbrella theme of “Complex mechanisms of living organisms.” According to the HFSPO, particular emphasis is placed on cutting-edge, risky projects. The consortium will use the grant to study a special class of nerve cells that are located in the spinal cord and contact the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). The program aims at establishing how genetic networks specify these fascinating cells and unravel the molecular mechanisms by which CSF-contacting neurons are physiologically activated and contribute to behaviour. “We hope to gain a better understanding of how chemical and mechanical cues produced in the brain are communicated to neurons within the spinal cord” say Drs Delmas and Wyart. This program will use exciting new interdisciplinary approaches to investigate these crucial questions and fundamental gaps in our knowledge.

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