Our group gathers psychiatrists, neuroscientists and geneticists to understand the causes of autism spectrum disorders (ASD). We previously identified one synaptic pathway associated with ASD – the NLGN-NRXN-SHANK pathway. This pathway is known for playing a role in synapse formation and in the balance of excitation and inhibition within the brain. In parallel, we identified the first mutations within the melatonin pathway, which could contribute to the sleep problems observed in individuals with ASD. Our results highlight the genetic heterogeneity of ASD, but also point at common pathways that could constitute relevant targets for new treatments. We are currently performing a thorough genomic and clinical profiling of a large number of individuals (>1000 families with ASD) using high-throughput genotyping/sequencing, biochemistry and brain imaging. In parallel, we are focusing on a set of mutations that we identified in genes related to the synapse (NLGN, SHANK, CNTN) by studying in depth their functional impact at the clinical and neuronal levels. Especially, we are exploring new ways of modulating the observed deficits by using human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) and animal models. Our group is developing new methods for analyzing whole genome and brain imaging data as well as new paradigms for characterizing mouse social and vocal behaviors.
Group: Applied and theoretical neuroanatomy
Tools for computational Neuroanatomy
We implement and develop data analysis pipelines to process large neuroimaging-genetics datasets, and participate in the analysis of several very large international consortia. We have developed online and offline interactive tools to examine the […]
Genomic architecture of normal and pathological human neuroanatomical diversity
Human brain anatomy is strikingly diverse and highly inheritable: genetic factors may explain up to 80% of its variability. Genome-wide scans looking for associations between genomic polymorphism and neuroanatomical variability identify, however, just a […]
Background on the genetics of ASD
Autism spectrum disorders are a heterogeneous group of pervasive neurodevelopmental disorders affecting approximately 1% of the population. The diagnosis of ASD is based on impairments in reciprocal social communication and stereotyped behaviors. Behind the […]
Protected: Risk and Resilience in Neuropsychiatry
There is no excerpt because this is a protected post.
The project SoNeTAA combines human-human and human-machine interactions with electroencephalography (EEG) recording to approach social cognition from a situated and reciprocal standpoint. The project especially focuses on Autism Spectrum Disorders and aims to bridge […]
Recent progress in sequencing and bioinformatics methods have given access to ancient DNA. This project aims at understanding the differential evolutionary pressure on the key proteins implicated in the nervous system, especially those related […]
Phelan McDermid Syndrome: from mechanisms to treatments
Phelan-McDermid syndrome (PMS) is a neurodevelopmental disorder with non-specific clinical features. The main symptoms are hypotonia, intellectual disability (ID), absent or delayed speech together with minor dysmorphic features. More than half of the patients […]
Establishment of cohorts of patients with ASD
To tackle the genetic and phenotypic heterogeneity of ASD, our group is part of several national and international consortia that provide the specific expertise required to explore different facets of ASD. In France, our […]
Mouse models of ASD
In order to characterize the mechanisms leading to autism spectrum disorders, we are studying several mouse models. These models are mutated in a gene of interest that has been associated with ASD in genetic […]
The serotonin-NAS-melatonin pathway and susceptibility to ASD
Sleep difficulties are a major concern for families with ASD, but are often considered as an epiphenomenon, and therefore do not catch the attention of the medical and scientific community. In 2008, we reported […]
Brain imaging and genetics
Our group is exploring the human brain using Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and electroencephalogram (EEG). These approaches are combined with our genetic data in order to better understand the genetic and phenotypic diversity of […]
INCEPTION – Institut Convergence for the study of Emergence of Pathology Through Individuals and Populations
Inception Goal The Inception’s goal is to develop a core structure to mobilize data resources, numerical sciences, and fundamental experimental biology in a range of health issues. Inception program uses Integrative Biology, Social Science […]
GRAVITY allows for rapid visualization and analysis of all the exonic variants stored in a database or in a VCF file by mapping them on an interaction network. It is designed as a plugin […]
Patients stratification with Graph-regularized Non-negative Matrix Factorization (GNMF) in Python.
BrainBox (http://brainbox.pasteur.fr) is a web application developed by the Groupe de Neuroanatomie appliquée et théorique de l’Unité de génétique humaine et fonctions cognitives. BrainBox lets you visualise and segment collaboratively any brain MRI dataset available […]
MicroDraw is a web application to visualise and annotate collaboratively high resolution histology data. Annotations are vectorial, and you can use boolean operations to combine, subtract and split regions. You can point MicroDraw to […]
The Brain Catalogue is a collaborative platform for comparative neuroanatomy. Our aim is to celebrate the diversity of the vertebrate brain by making high quality data, open and freely available to everyone. You can […]
This web application allows the exchange of mouse vocalisation recording files. https://mousetube.pasteur.fr/ You can be part of the community by clicking here.
2017Heritability of the melatonin synthesis variability in autism spectrum disorders, Sci Rep 2017 Dec;7(1):17746.
2017A framework to identify contributing genes in patients with Phelan-McDermid syndrome, NPJ Genom Med 2017;2:32.
2017Genome-wide meta-analysis of cognitive empathy: heritability, and correlates with sex, neuropsychiatric conditions and cognition, Mol Psychiatry. 2017 Jun 6..
2017From clinic to the “foul and exciting field of life”: A psychiatric point of view on clinical physiology, Annales Médico-Psychologiques, Revue Psychiatrique. 2017 Jan;175(1).
2016Recording mouse ultrasonic vocalizations to evaluate social communication, J. Vis. Exp. 2016; 112, e53871.
2016CNTN6 mutations are risk factors for abnormal auditory sensory perception in autism spectrum disorders, Mol. Psychiatry 2017 Apr;22(4):625-633.
2016An inter-species protein-protein interaction network across vast evolutionary distance, Mol. Syst. Biol. 2016;12(4):865.
2016Enhanced emotional responses during social coordination with a virtual partner, Int J Psychophysiol 2016 Jun;104:33-43.
2016The Regulation of Task Performance: A Trans-Disciplinary Review, Front Psychol 2015;6:1862.
2015Identification and validation of biomarkers for autism spectrum disorders, Nat Rev Drug Discov 2015 Dec;15(1):70-3.
+View full list of publications
Christopher Gillberg is Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, since the mid 1980s. He heads the Gillberg Neuropsychiatry Centre. He is also a Chief Physician at the Sahlgrenska University Hospital and one of the world’s most experienced, clinically active, child- and adolescent psychiatrists, with over 40 years of extensive clinical work in treatment of patients and families with complex psychiatric/neurodevelopmental problems.
Christopher Gillberg is affiliated to the “Human Genetics and Cognitive Functions” unit of the Institut Pasteur since 2015. We are working together for more than 15 years on understanding the genetic and environmental factors associated with autism.
To visit the Gillberg Neuropsychiatry Centre please go to http://gillbergcentre.gu.se/english
NEWS !! you can download the slides of Christopher Gillberg here: autism-plus-versus-autism-pure-institut-pasteur-sept-2016
Pictures & Media