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Study opportunities

Gilles Claude Vanwalleghem's lab:

Lab background:

Our lab aims to understand the gut-brain axis, how the gut microbiome, nervous system and immune system interact and how that can lead to mental health disorders. We use the zebrafish as an animal model, it has multiple advantages in terms of genetic tools, community, resources, etc… But the main advantage is that it is a fully transparent animal model at the larval stage. We can easily image the whole brain and body of the animal and image in vivo processes.

Available projects:

  • Enteric Nervous system and microbiome

This project involves functional imaging of the enteric nervous system and how it is impacted by changes in the microbiome. You will image the developing enteric nervous system and learn how to prepare and maintain germ-free animals, as well as reinfect them.

  • Apolipoprotein L function in the brain

The apolipoprotein L family has been linked to innate immunity, but they also seem involved in vesicle secretion and the SNARE complex, however their function in neurons is completely unknown. This project involves the study of those genes function in zebrafish.


Our lab uses molecular biology, computation neuroscience, image, and data analysis to understand the enteric nervous system and the brain. We take advantage of the transparent zebrafish and our light-sheet microscope to image in vivo the processes we study.

The successful applicant is:
As the projects are mix of molecular biology, neuroscience, computational biology, and immunology, I can accept students from a variety of background. Experience with interdisciplinary research is a plus, but willingness to learn new methods is enough.

 Please contact Team Leader Gilles Claude Vanwalleghem directly, if interested.