Personal Information

E-mail: thomas.stefanelli@inserm.fr
Year:
1985
OrcID: 0000-0003-2923-7223

Actual Employment

Postdoctoral researcher
INSERM U862
Laboratory Dr. Cyril Herry
Neurocentre Magendie
University of Bordeaux
146 rue Léo Saignat
33077 Bordeaux Cedex
France

Research Interests/Perspectives

My interest in understanding human memory started during my Bachelor studies in psychology in Geneva, where I discovered and I was fascinated by the complexity behind such sophisticated process. With the goal of gaining insight into the neural basis of memory, I decided to do a Master thesis in the Department of Basic Neuroscience at the University of Geneva. I joined the laboratory of Prof. Dominique Muller, a leading expert in synaptic mechanisms of memory. In 2014 I was offered a Phd position in the Muller laboratory to study hippocampal-dependent memory in mice. After Prof. Dominique Muller passed away in April 2015, I joined the laboratory of Prof. Christian Lüscher, where I finished my Phd that focused on the role of inhibitory circuits in memory allocation. The main findings of my Phd work have been published in a high profile journal and received major attention in the field of neuroscience. During my Phd, I extended the laboratories’ technological portfolio by implementing optogenetics and chemogenetics techniques, mice memory tests, anxiety and locomotion behavioral tests and histological analysis required to my research. I have learned to manage team-work and encourage and transform my own ideas into experimental work. I consolidated my skills in coordinating and administering all the necessary steps for the development and finalization of a project. The experience acquired in the Müller and Lüscher laboratories has boosted my scientific background and confirmed my passion to do research in neuroscience.  

Education

2014-2017:
Phd degree in Neuroscience,
University of Geneva, 1205 Geneva.
Thesis title: Inhibitory control of hippocampal memory formation.    
Director: Prof. Dr. Christian Lüscher & Prof. Dr. Dominique Muller (Deceased, April 29th 2015); Co-director: Dr. Pablo Mendez.
    
2012-2014:
Master of Science (MSc), Neuroscience
, University of Geneva, 1205 Geneva.
Thesis title: Viral-mediated identification of behaviorally activated neurons.
Supervisor: Dr. Pablo Mendez; Director: Prof. Dr. Dominique Muller.

2009-2012:
Bachelor of Science (BSc)
, Psychology, University of Geneva, 1205 Geneva.

Awards & Achievements

2017-2019: EMBO Long-Term Fellowship (Non-stipendiary member)

2017-2021: Early & Advanced Postdoc.Mobility - Swiss National Science Foundation

2018:
Amicitia Excellence Prize

2016:
- Swiss Society for Neuroscience: Travel Fellowship 2016 (FENS, Copenhagen, Denmark)
- Swiss Society for Neuroscience: Volker Henn Poster Award, Lausanne (Switzerland)

Competency

Project management skills: Manage team-work. Encourage and transform my own ideas into experimental work. Coordinate and administer all the necessary steps for the development and finalization of a project.

Data analysis: During my thesis I managed to analyze all the different kind of data necessary for publication of projects.

Initiative and self-reliance: Set-up new techniques in the lab that my help the development of projects.

Laboratory techniques

- Confocal microscopy
- Organotypic hippocampal slice culture (OHSC) preparation
- Biolistic transfection of plasmids in OHSC
- Long Term Potentiation on OHSC
- Immunohistochemistry
- Tissue optical clearing techniques: CLARITY (Nature 497, 332–337, 2013), SeeDB (Nature Neuroscience 16, 1154–1161, 2013)

- Transcardial perfusion
- Stereotaxic intracranial injection of adeno-associated viral vectors and cannulae and fiber-optic implantation
- Remote control of neuronal activity: Pharmacogenetics and Optogenetics
- Behavioral paradigms (enriched environment, elevated plus maze, open field, contextual & cued fear conditioning, locomotor sensitization, cocaine self-administration, operant conditioning)

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