Matthieu Louis. Centre for Genomic Regulation
A physicist by training, Matthieu Louis works on modelling neural processes that underlie the representation of sensory signals and the control of behaviour in fruit flies. He leads the Sensory Systems and Behaviour group in the Systems Biology program of the Centre for Genomic Regulation (Spain). The Louis lab studies how odour tracking comes about in terms of neural circuit computation in the Drosophila melanogaster larva. A variety of experimental and computational techniques are combined to explain the emergence of odour coding and decision making during the navigation of odour gradients. The Louis lab has developed computational tools to characterise and to automatically classify stereotypical behavioural sequences. It uses optogenetics to create virtual sensory realities in which hypotheses about the links between sensation and behaviour can be tested. As a long-term goal, it aims to identify neural circuits involved in the conversion of olfactory information into orientation decisions.