The European Neuroscience Institute at Paris Descartes University (Paris 5)

ENI-Paris is a collaboration between the Department of Neuroscience at the Pasteur Institute (DNPI) and the Center for Biomedical Research at Saints Pères. The Department of Neuroscience was established in January 1st, 2002, with Jean-Pierre Changeux as Chair. It consists of 8 units including two recently recruited junior group leaders (5-year groups) and one research unit (Unité Postulante).

It regroups 140 members, comprising 44 tenured scientists, 50 postdoctoral trainees and students and 45 technicians and administrative staff. As a general rule, the Pasteur Institute will accommodate up to five junior groups each year, one of them being hosted at the DNPI. Therefore, at early 2006, the DNPI could accommodate up to four junior groups, each of them being established independently. Their integration at the DNPI is guarantied by the Chairman of the department (Jean-Pierre Changeux) and by the Scientific Director (Stuart Coles) of the Pasteur Institute, acting both in concert to create an ideal environment for nurturing the young groups.

The scientific program of the Department is to foster an interdisciplinary research that aims to elucidate how the brain and sensory organs operate in normal and pathological conditions using a combination of genetics, cellular physiology and behaviour.

The Department provides a unique and fertile environment where scientists with different backgrounds can interact and develop synergistic collaborations. It has developed strong interactions with other Departments of the Pasteur Institute (e.g., Cell Biology/Infection and De­velopmental Biology).

Internal and external networks are facilitated by the help of public institutions (CNRS, INSERM, Collège de France), grants funded by the EU (Marie Curie fellowship, etc.), the French Research Ministry (ACI, etc..) and HSFP. Finally, the DNPI participates in a teaching program "Development and Plasticity of the Nervous System" that includes international conferences related to cellular and molecular mechanims underlying the development of the functional organization of the nervous sytem and of the sensory organs. The Center for Biomedical Research at Saints Pères includes 4 CNRS or INSERM units working in Neurosciences (amounting to a total of about 35 permanent staff scientists).

These units have inte rests ranging from molecular and cellular physiology to clinical studies. A strong point of the centre is that it has developed interactions between experimental neuroscience, modelling and technical developments, particularly regarding advan ced optical techniques

Team Lead

Professor Alain Marty – Brain Physiology


  • Young Investigator
Dr. Valentina Emiliani – Wavefront-engineering microscopy