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Two Neuro projects funded by international partnership

Justine Clery and Stefano Stifani
Published: 14 June 2024

Researchers will study how hormones affect brain cancer and the role of neural circuits in social skills

The Paris Brain Institute and the Institut Pasteur have partnered with The Neuro to fund two groundbreaking studies, each receiving more than $440,000. These projects are part of an international collaboration to address future challenges in neuroscience.

Created in 2016 by the Paris Brain Institute, the Big Brain Theory (BBT) Program funds innovative, interdisciplinary, high-risk research projects. Now, after supporting 33 research projects, the Institute has opened BBT’s fourth edition to international partners including The Neuro, Institut Pasteur, and Mission Lucidity.

The two Neuro co-led projects funded this year are:


  • “Deciphering molecular actors involved in glioblastoma-associated microglia phenotype triggered by the hormonal macroenvironment” - led by Stefano Stifani (The Neuro) and international coordinators Ahmed Idbaih, Maite Verreault and Philippe Bousso, the project aims to understand how hormones in the body affect the behavior and characteristics of specific brain cells in glioblastoma.
  • “Evolutionary and developmental trajectories of primate brain areas involved in social relation” - led by Justine Cléry (The Neuro), Julia Sliwa (Paris Brain Institute), and Roberto Toro (Institut Pasteur), this project aims to understand how neural circuits implement higher social skills and enable us to navigate in our societies smoothly.


Selected by the Paris Brain Institute Scientific Advisory Board, the chosen projects explore original ideas and bold hypothesis at their earliest stages. The BBT Program aims to provide seed funding for these projects to achieve initial proofs of concept, enabling them to secure further institutional funding and ultimately revolutionize the approaches to treating central nervous system disorders. 

The Neuro logo McGill logoMcGill University Health Centre logoKillam Laureates


The Neuro (Montreal Neurological Institute-Hospital) is a bilingual academic healthcare institution. We are a McGill research and teaching institute; delivering high-quality patient care, as part of the Neuroscience Mission of the McGill University Health Centre. We are proud to be a Killam Institution, supported by the Killam Trusts.



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