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Background:

The CNRS wished to create a research unit within the CDTA service unit (UPS44 TAAM) in the premises of the Institute of Transgenosis, on the CNRS campus of Orléans. We created in 2001 the FRE "Immunologie et Embryologie Moléculaires", directed by Bernhard Ryffel. The unit was labelled UMR 6218 in 2006. After the departure of the Development teams and the arrival of the Neurogenetics team in 2009, the UMR7355 INEM "Immunology and Neurogenetics Experimental and Molecular" (INEM) was created in 2012, directed by Valérie Quesniaux.

Scientific objectives:

The scientific objectives of the UMR7355 INEM "Experimental and Molecular Immunology and Neurogenetics" are the study of the molecular and cellular mechanisms involved in host-pathogen relationships, pulmonary inflammation, the genetics of autism and mental deficiencies and in neurotoxicity processes during development. We are developing a joint transverse project in Neuroinflammation. We analyze the mechanisms involved in certain pathologies, which allows us to identify and validate molecular targets of interest.

We work close to industrial actors which gives us access to state-of-the-art reagents and we have created a start-up in 2010, Artimmune, in order to transfer service contracts. Our unit has a double competence and integrated complex models allowing to apprehend patho-physiological mechanisms in immunology/inflammation and neuropathology, and develops a transverse project in neuroinflammation fed by the different teams. Our primary activity remains academic research in order to advance knowledge of physiological, immunological/inflammatory and neuropathological mechanisms at the fundamental level

The missions of the unit are thus multiple:

Both to advance knowledge of physiological, immunological and inflammatory mechanisms at the fundamental level, but also to transfer this knowledge into relevant models for the testing of drug candidates, and finally a training mission that is declined both at the university level, training of Master and doctoral students, but also among the youngest by participating in the program IA EDIFICE Bac -3 Bac+8, as well as lifelong learning with in particular internships in the framework of the training Pôle-Emploi ; Our laboratory thus trains not only a large number of trainees and students (250 over the period 2011-mi2016), but also first CDD jobs (25 over the period), half of which have led to permanent public positions or CDI in the private sector.

Interactions with the economic and social environment:

Our experience in the pharmaceutical industry and in medicine means that we are very attentive to transferring this fundamental knowledge into relevant models for the testing of drug candidates. We have sustained interactions with the business world, valorization and clinical research. Since 2010, we have hosted the company Artimmune, SAS (CEO F.Trovero / Project Manager D.Togbe) founded from the expertise and research conducted within the immunology teams, which currently employs 7 people on permanent contracts, including project managers, engineers and assistant engineers, plus doctoral students on contract in partnership with the research unit (Site: http://www.artimmune.com/ ). Following patents filed in the field of Fragile X, the first orphan drug declaration was obtained this year from the CNRS by Sylvain Briault's "Neurogenetics" team, and a clinical trial is currently being set up.

The partnerships set up contribute effectively to the research of the unit and to its notoriety:
The two LIAs set up with South Africa and Brazil are the object of effective collaborations as much in number of student and researcher exchanges as in number of joint publications.

Several of the founding members and senior scientists are physicians and/or come from the pharmaceutical industry (Sandoz, Ciba-Geigy, Novartis) or biotech (Key-Obs), our approach is largely focused on experimental medicine. We develop mouse models of human pathologies, in the fields of inflammation, infection and neurobiology.

Thematic Research Networks (RTR) : RTR MotiveHealth,    RTR Neuro-Imagerie,    RTR Féri

                                                                                                                                            Valérie Quesniaux

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