Andrillon Thomas


Research fellow at the Paris Brain Institute since March 2021

My research aims at understanding how the activity of our brain (physiology) constrains our ability to interact with the external world (behaviour) and the sustainment of a stream of mental contents (phenomenology). To achieve this goal, I study different physiological, behavioural and mental states: sleep and wakefulness,responsive and non-responsive, dreaming and mind wandering. I use a combination of techniques and approaches to explore the physiology, cognition and consciousness of healthy individuals and clinical populations. I focus in particular on sleep (insomnia, narcolepsy, etc), attention (ADHD), and consciousness disorders with the firm conviction that basic and clinical research can jointly reach a better understanding of the brain and improved clinical care for patients.

I hold a Bachelor's in Life Sciences and a Master's in Cognitive Sciences (CogMaster, ENS, Paris). I completed my Master's thesis in the laboratory of Prof Giulio Tononi and Prof Chiara Cirelli (University of Wisconsin in Madison), under the supervision of Prof Yuval Nir.

I obtained my PhD in Cognitive Sciences at the École Normale Supérieure in Paris, under the supervision of Sid Kouider. I then moved to Australia to do a postdoc with Prof Nao Tsuchiya (Monash University) and Prof Joel Pearson (University of New South Wales).

I will become a permanent research officer at the Paris Brain Institute (Chargé de Recherche) in March 2022.

Main research articles:

- Predicting lapses of attention with sleep-like slow waves. Andrillon, Burns, Mackay,Windt, Tsuchiya. Nature Communications (2021)

- Formation and Suppression of Acoustic Memories during Human Sleep. Andrillon, Pressnitzer, Léger & Kouider. Nature Communications (2017)

- Single-neuron activity and eye movements during human REM sleep and awake vision. Andrillon*, Nir*, Cirelli, Tononi & Fried. Nature Communications (2015)

General-audience articles:

- What is daydreaming? Parts of the brain show sleep-like activity when your mind wanders. Andrillon, Windt & Tsuchiya. The Conversation.

- Brains can make decisions while we sleep – here they are in action. Andrillon. TheConversation

Can you learn while you sleep? Andrillon. OUP Blog

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