Programme 2016

PLEASE NOTICE: Due to the Italian Referendum, the course schedule has been slightly modified so that the course will finish by 12:30pm on Sunday 4th of December 2016 to allow Italian participants to get back home to vote if they wish to (closing time for poll stations is 23:00 of the 4th of December).

The cerebellum inside-out: cells, circuits and functions

Course Directors: E. D’Angelo, Claudia Gandini Wheeler-Kingshott, Chris De Zeeuw

Date: 1st-5th December 2016

The 2016 Course of the School of Brain Cells and Circuits will be dedicated to the cerebellum. The cerebellum is a complex brain structure that subserves sensori-motor control functions but also probably plays a key role in cognition. The interest of this course will be to reconnect different levels of current knowledge and promote cross-fertilization among research fields. On the one hand, the cerebellar microcircuit is amongst the most investigated ever and has inspired fundamental neurophysiological theories. On the other hand cerebellar dysfunction is at the base of a complex set of motor and non-motor pathologies that are only recently coming to light. In this course, we will move from cellular and molecular biophysics of the cerebellar neurons and circuits up to integrative aspects of cerebellar functioning.

A set of selected talks will cover this range of experimental approaches allowing to integrate cerebellar mechanisms of functions on the micro-, meso and macro-scale of brain organization and to pilot future experimentation and modeling. Interactive workshops will allow to apply the fundamental knowledge on cerebellar functioning to the analysis of the brain pathologies in animal models and humans, ranging from hereditary ataxias to multiple slerosis, neurodegenerative diseases and autism.

The 2016 Course will gather scientists from different disciplines in a lively and interactive training scheme, with the aim of bridging the different level of knowledge on cerebellar functioning toward future applications in biomedical research.


Thursday 01-12-2016
Arrival and opening reception

19:00: Introduction
Egidio D’Angelo, Claudia Gandini Wheeler-Kingshott, Chris de Zeeuw

Friday 02-12-2016
Cerebellar neurons, synapses & microcircuits



9:00 – “New emerging scenarios on the cerebellar neurones and microcircuits.”
Egidio D’Angelo (University of Pavia, Italy)

9:45 – “Synaptic signalling in the input layer of the cerebellar cortex.”
Angus Silver (UCL, UK)

11:00-11:30 Coffee break & posters

11:30 – “Purkinje cell collaterals feed back to regulate activity in the cerebellar cortex”
Laurens Witter (Harvard Medical School Boston, USA & VU University Amsterdam, The Netherlands)

12:15 – “Cerebellar contributions to autism.”
Christian Hansel (University of Chicago, USA)

13:00-14:30 Lunch



14:30 – “Temporo-cerebellar interactions in social cognition”
Arseny Sokolov (CHUV, CH)

15:15 – Round Table
Can studying the cerebellum help to understand cognition and cognitive dysfunction ?
Topic discussants: Shyam Diwakar (Amrita University, India) & Aleksandra Badura (Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience, The Netherlands & Princeton University, USA) & Tomaso Vecchi (University of Pavia, Italy)

  • Introduction: A common framework for cerebellum in cognitive dysfunction
  • Special topic 1: Cognition and cognitive disorders
  • Special topic 2: Autism, Schizophrenia and Depression
  • Special topic 3: Dyslexia and ADHD

17:00-18:00 Coffee break & posters

Saturday 03-12-2016
Mechanisms of Cerebellar Functions



9:00 – “Cortex on demand? Disinhibitory circuits of the cerebellar cortex.”
Stéphane Dieudonné (École des Neurosciences Paris, France)

9:45 – “Cerebellar learning with perturbations.”
Boris Barbour (ENS, France)

10:30-11:00 Coffee break & posters

11:00 – “Circuit mechanisms underlying cerebellar behaviour.”
Chris De Zeeuw (Erasmus University Rotterdam, Netherlands)

12:00-13:00 GROUP PHOTO at the round table!!! Visit to the castle crounds

13:00-16:00 Lunch



16:00  – “Functional and structural connectivity of the cerebellum inside out”
Claudia Gandini Wheeler-Kingshott (University College London, UK & Pavia University, Italy)

16:30 – Round Table
What is the role of the cerebellum in systemic neurological diseases?
Topic discussants: Freek Hoebeek (Erasmus University Rotterdam, Netherlands) & Raj Kapoor (University College London, UK)

  • Introduction: A common framework for cerebellum in systemic neurological diseases.
  • Special topic 1: multiple sclerosis
  • Special topic 2: stroke and vascular diseases
  • Special topic 3: Epilepsy

18:00-19:00 Coffee break & posters

20:30 DINNER @ Venus Restaurant

Sunday 04-12-2016
Long-range loops and integrated functions of the cerebellum



8:00 – “Cerebellar contributions to the instrumental control of behaviour”
Narender Ramnani (Royal Holloway, University of London, UK)

8:45 – “Cerebellar and basal ganglia connections with the cerebral cortex and with each other: Circuits for movement and cognition.”
Peter Strick (University of Pittsburg, USA)

9:30-10 Coffee break & poster awards

10:00 – Round Table
Key or secondary role of cerebellum in neurodegenerative disorders?
Topic discussants: Paola Giunti (UCL, UK) & Diego Sepulveda-Falla (University of Hamburg, Germany)

  • Introduction: A common framework for cerebellum in neurodegeneration.
  • Special topic 1: Spino-cerebellar ataxias
  • Special topic 2: AD and PD

12:00 – Closing remarks

Sunday 04-12-2016
Farewell and leaving

For those leaving on Monday 5th of December, there will be an opportunity to explore the surrounding of Erice!