Team Leader: Daniel Choquet
Daniel Choquet obtained an engineering degree from Ecole Centrale (Paris, France) in 1984. He then got attracted to neuroscience (Master’s degree Paris VI) and completed his Ph.D. in the lab of Henri Korn at the Pasteur Institute (Paris), studying ion channels in lymphocytes. He got appointed tenure Research officer at the CNRS in 1988 in the group of H. Korn. He then performed a postdoctoral/sabbatical at the Duke University (North Carolina, USA) in the laboratory of Michael Sheetz where he studied the regulation of integrin-cytoskeletal linkage by force, and demonstrated that cells can sense and respond to extracellular traction. He then setup his group in Bordeaux (France) at the Institute for Neuroscience where he got a directorship position at the CNRS. He launched an interdisciplinary program on the use of high resolution imaging to study the trafficking of neurotransmitter receptors in neural cells. He is now heading the project of the Institute for Interdisciplinary Neuroscience and the Bordeaux Imaging Center core facility. He develops several research topics, combining neuroscience, physics and chemistry in order to unravel the dynamics of multimolecular complexes and their role in synaptic transmission. He has recently uncovered a new role for the mobility of glutamate receptors in synaptic transmission.
He has been the recipient of several awards including the 1990 Bronze medal from the CNRS, the Research prize from the Fondation pour la Recherche Mdicale, 1997, the Grand Prix from the French Academy of Sciences, prix du CEA and the 2009 Silver medal from the CNRS. He is a Member of the Institut de France, the French Science Academy since November 2010.
The leitmotif of his research has always been to build bridges between disciplines in order to explore new scientific territories.
We have a trans-disciplinary approach to study the interplay between the organizational dynamics of the molecular components of glutamatergic synapses and synaptic transmission. Our projects build on our recent findings that: a) trafficking of neuronal molecules such as glutamate receptors is highly dynamic, b) regulations of protein-protein interactions play key roles in the control of this trafficking at different steps, including lateral diffusion, endo and exocytosis, c) modulation of glutamate receptor trafficking has a profound impact on synaptic transmission, including on both short and long term post-synaptic plasticity. By combining the expertise of chemists, biochemists, cell biologists, biophysicists and neurophysiologists, we will develop 3 main research axes:
- Dynamics and physical-chemistry of the macro-molecular complexes of the synapse
- Nano-scale organization and dynamics of synaptic proteins and membrane trafficking
- Impact of the dynamic of synapse organization on synaptic physiology
Results obtained in these three axes will be constantly integrated to provide a global view of glutamatergic synapse physiology, from nano-scale interactions to function.