Comparative Developmental Neurobiology



Neurons are the most diverse cell type in the animal body.

In the lab of Comparative Developmental Neurobiology, our goal is to understand how the impressive diversity of neurons that can be found in the animal brain develops during the hours, days, or weeks of embryonic development and how it has evolved over the millions of years of evolution. We use single-cell sequencing and Drosophila powerful genetic tools to characterize complex neurodevelopmental mechanisms and understand how they have evolved.


Group Leader : Nikos Konstantinides

CNRS Research Fellow –

+33 (0)157278145







Research Topics


Biologie quantitative et modélisation (Bioinformatics, Regulatory networks, Transciptomics), Développement et évolution (Cell fate and differentiation, Evolution, Neurobiology), Dynamique cellulaire et signalisation (Neurobiology, Gene expression), Dynamique du génome et des chromosomes (Gene expression, Genome structure and evolution), Pathologies moléculaires et cellulaires


Selected publications


Konstantinides N.*, Rossi A.M., Escobar A., Dudragne L., Chen Y.C., Tran T., Martinez Jaimes A., Özel M.N., Simon F., Shao Z., Tsankova N.M., Fullard J.F., Walldorf U., Roussos P., Desplan C.* (2021) A comprehensive series of temporal transcription factors in the fly visual system.

Biorxiv doi:

* co-corresponding author

Simon F.*, Konstantinides N.* (2021) Single-cell transcriptomics in the Drosophila visual system: advances and perspectives on cell identity regulation, connectivity, and neuronal diversity evolution.

Developmental Biology 479:107-122

* co-corresponding author

Özel M.N., Jafari S., Holguera I., Chen Y.C, Benhra N., El-Danaf R.N., Kapuralin K.,  Malin J.A., Konstantinides N.*, Desplan C. (2021) Transient and heterogeneous neuronal types revealed by a comprehensive developmental atlas of the Drosophila optic lobe.

Nature 589(7840):88-95

* co-corresponding author

Konstantinides N.*, and Desplan C.* (2020) Neuronal differentiation strategies: insights from single-cell sequencing and machine learning.

Development 147: dev193631

* co-corresponding author

Konstantinides N.*, Kapuralin K., Fadil C., Barboza L., Satija R., Desplan C. (2018) Phenotypic convergence in the brain: distinct transcription factors regulate common terminal neuronal characters.

Cell 174(3):622-635.

* co-corresponding author

Konstantinides N.*, Degabriel S., Desplan C. (2018) Neuro-evo-devo in the single cell sequencing era.

Curr Opin Syst Biol 11:32-40.

* corresponding author

Konstantinides N.* and Averof M. (2014) A common cellular basis for muscle regeneration in arthropods and vertebrates.

Science 343(6172):788-91

* co-corresponding author