Axon regeneration and growth

A lesion of mammalian nervous system is known to trigger a series of typical events that inevitably perturb the neural environment, a phenomenon that in turn influences the remodeling of neurons and their axons, whether they are themselves injured, or indirectly affected.

A major part of our recent work has contributed to the unraveling of some of the molecular mechanisms governing the reorganization of the cytoskeleton that determines the axon fate; regeneration, retraction, and degeneration. The main research activities of our team concern:

  • the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying axonal plasticity and neural cell remodeling in the adult nervous system in response to traumatic or neurodegenerative injuries. The group has developed an expertise by simultaneously studying plasticity and regeneration in both CNS and PNS, with special emphasis on the organization of the cytoskeleton. 
  • Future repair strategies of traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI) should be based on a combinatorial treatment, and necessitate the conception of an appropriate model requiring several rounds of constant improvement by close interaction between pluridisciplinary groups. Accordingly, we recently built a consortium between biologists and physico-chemists to explore and validate novel combinations of therapeutic approaches integrating biomaterial scaffolds as extracellular matrix substitute for SCI repair.
  • Approaches : Several animal models, including SCI, have been developed or adapted, both in rat and mouse. Introduction of cell biology, biochemistry, and biomechanics have allowed combining in vivo studies with functional molecular analyses.