Université Francois Rabelais de Tours, Tours, France

Group Description

Brief description of legal entity
The unit U930 'Imaging and Brain' at the University of Tours (UT), created in January 2008 (Director: D. Guilloteau), includes team 3 'Neurotransmission: from molecular imaging to clinical applications' (Leader: S. Chalon) that is focussed on SPECT/PET brain exploration and team 4 'Affective disorders' (Leader: C. Belzung) focused on preclinical and clinical studies in depressive disorders and their relationship with vascular and neurodegenerative disorders.

Main tasks
Objectives are to improve the understanding of pathophysiological mechanisms, early diagnosis, evaluation of treatments of CNS disorders related to neurodegeneration, neuroinflammation and neurotransmission abnormalities using molecular imaging of brain targets (receptors, transporters, abnormal proteins), with complementary axes: 1-Development of radiopharmaceuticals dedicated to SPECT/PET imaging, and used for preclinical and clinical studies. Tracers are focused on the exploration of dopaminergic and cholinergic systems, specific abnormal proteins (β-amyloid plaques, NFT) and TSPO. 2-Quantitative image analysis. Multi-modality based methods are developed in order to improve quantitative measurements of physiologic functions, to study the progression of brain disorders or the effects of therapy. 3-Study of animal models that mimic specific aspects of the above brain disorders. These rodent models are aimed to better understand the pathophysiological mechanisms of these disorders and propose new diagnosis and therapeutic approaches, using in particular molecular imaging. 4-Clinical SPECT/PET applications. They are realized on patient cohorts followed by the unit clinicians and are mainly focused on the early diagnosis and treatment of AD, PD and ALS.

Participation in INMiND: WP3 / WP5 / WP6 / WP7 / WP8 / WP10 / WP12.

Previous experience relevant to INMiND tasks

Coordination of WP3, radiopharmaceutical probes, in FP6 Network of Excellence 'DiMI' (D. Guilloteau, J. Vercouillie).
In particular, we organized each year two training courses, opened to young and senior researchers.
- TSPO tracers available in the team: DPA-714, CLINDE.
- Use of these tracers in animal models: QA lesion, 6-OHDA lesion, APP/PS1 mice.
- Clinical protocol currently in progress with DPA-714 in MCI and AD.

University of Tours
Sylvie CHALON, PhD
INMiND Office
European Institute for Molecular Imaging (EIMI) Waldeyerstr. 15
· 48149 Münster
Tel: +49 251 83 49300 · Fax: +49 251 83 49313