Nutrition and psychoneuroimmunology: experimental and clinical approaches


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Topic 1: depression /

Our multidisciplinary team aims at understanding how nutrition may modulate brain functions and vulnerability to psychiatric disorders with a particular attention paid to major depression. We test the hypothesis that Western diet, diabetes or obesity through the modulation of inflammatory and metabolic pathways participate to the pathophysiology of depression and impact response to antidepressant treatments. We are currently exploring the specific role of: i) enzymatic pathways involved in inflammatory processes, such as the indoleamine2,3-dioxygenase (IDO) and the guanosine triphosphate cyclohydrolase 1 (GTP-CH1) ; ii) gut-brain axis dysfunctions and iii) early life stress in the pathophysiology of depression in a context of altered nutritional status. For this purpose, we adopt a translational research approach from humans to animal models and vice versa, combining the skills and expertise of researchers and clinicians.

Topic 2: Molecular and cellular mechanisms of nutrients/micronutrients in the brain; role in mood and cognitive disorders (Equipe FRM) /

The research program develop aims to unravel the mechanisms underlying nutrients (sugar, fatty acids, amino-acids) and micronutrients (vitamins) activities in the brain, at the cellular (neurons, microglia) and brain circuit level. This knowledge will help to decipher how nutrition promotes brain health and protects from mood and cognitive disorders. We study in particular how:
1 / Omega 3 and their metabolites (oxylipins, endocannabinoids) regulate neuroinflammation and neuronal networks (focusing on the hippocampus and fronto-striatal circuits),
2/ sugar (glucose, fructose) control of food intake (hypothalamus) and emotional behavior (raphe nucleus)
3/ micronutrients or plant extracts protect from cognitive decline, with clinical approaches developed in aged subjects with V Pallet (team 2).

Selected publications

Team leader

Team member(s)

Lucile Capuron (Team leader)
Sophie Layé (Unity Director - Team leader)

Chercheurs, Praticiens hospitaliers...

Bruno Aouizerate (University teacher - researcher - Hospital practitioner)
Corinne Joffre (Researcher)
Didier Delhaye (Hospital head assistant)
Muriel Darnaudéry (University Teacher - Researcher)
Nathalie Castanon (Researcher)
Olivier Doumy (Hospital practitioner)
Pierre Trifilieff (Researcher)
Sylvie Vancassel (Researcher)
Xavier Fioramonti (Researcher)
Jean-Christophe Delpech (Researcher)
David Jarriault (Researcher)

Ingénieur(e)s, technicien(ne)s



Camille Monchaux
Hugo Martin
Ines Delgado
Fanny Decoeur
Maud Martinat
Anna Petitbon
Farah Younes
Adeline Coursan
Marie Martin