Group leader, Research Director (DR1)
CRN2M (Centre de Recherche en Neurobiologie et en Neurophysiologie de Marseille), France CNRS, France
Recording of the electrical activity of an ion channel piezo
Patrick Delmas is interested in sensory neurons that translate thermal, chemical, and mechanical stimuli. His goal is to understand the molecular basis of somatosensation – the process whereby we experience touch and pain – with an emphasis on identifying molecules that regulate electrogenesis of sensory neurons and detect environmental stimuli. The research conducted in his lab also focuses on characterizing the function of the enteric nervous system in both gastroenterological and neurological disorders.
Patrick Delmas’ laboratory combines gene targeting, electrophysiology, histological methods and behavioral approaches to explore the channels, receptors and regulatory pathways that control sensory neuron functions.
Genetic and physiological evidence from his lab suggests that Nav1.9 sodium channels are important players of the signaling mechanisms through which inflammatory mediators depolarize sensory neurons to produce pain hypersensitivity and neurogenic inflammation. Patrick Delmas and his team also study new mechanosensitive ion channels (K+ channels, TRPs, piezo channels) that detect gentle movement as well as noxious mechanical stimulation of the skin. They are working towards understanding the mechanism of activation of these channels under normal and pathological conditions, and aim at identifying additional sensory-specific ion channels. Patrick Delmas’ lab is building on these studies to extend our knowledge of the molecular processes that control neuronal sensory-transduction and electrogenesis. On a related front, they are developing potent and selective inhibitors for sensory ion channels as potential antalgic agents.
The long-term goal of the research conducted in Patrick Delmas’ lab is to synthesize an integrated picture of sensory neuron function. Their findings yield insights into the basic biology of the peripheral nervous system and have an impact on novel treatments for sensory diseases and pain.
• 1995 Ph. D. in Neurobiology and Pharmacology, CNRS, Marseille, France, Maurice Gola’s lab
• 1995-2001 Post-doctoral fellow, Wellcome Laboratory for Molecular Pharmacology at University College London, United Kingdom, Noel Buckley's lab
• 2001 Appointed Research Scientist (permanent position), CNRS, Marseille, France
• Program Grant, Human Frontier Science Program, 2014
• FRM Team, Medical Research Foundation (FRM), 2013
• FRM Team, Medical Research Foundation (FRM), 2007
• Research Prize, PACA Region, 2002
• Excellence Prize, Wellcome Trust, 2001
Feb 2013 Cell
Aug 2008 Cell
Apr 2008 Cell
May 2015, Nat Commun.
Oct 2013, Cell
June 2011 , Nat Protoc
Mar 2011, Nat Rev Neurosci