Dr Jimena Berni

Jimena Berni

University position

Downing College Henslow Research Fellow in Zoology


Department of Zoology

Home page


Research Theme

Developmental Neuroscience


My research is concerned with the way the neuronal network underlying locomotor behaviour assembles during embryonic development. In particular I am focussing in the mechanisms that contribute to the stability and reliability of the neuronal circuits function even in the face of natural or genetically induced variability. I work with the fruit fly Drosophila and I combine a range of genetic, neurobiological and anatomical techniques to attack this problem at several levels - from genes and neurons to circuits and behavior.

Research Focus




neural circuit



Clinical conditions

No direct clinical relevance


Behavioural analysis

Calcium imaging

Confocal microscopy

Fluorescence microscopy





MIchael Bate

Matthias Landgraf

Associated News Items

    Key publications

    Gjorgjieva J, Berni J, Evers JF, Eglen SJ (2013), “Neural circuits for peristaltic wave propagation in crawling Drosophila larvae: analysis and modeling.” Front Comput Neurosci 7:24 Details

    Berni J, Pulver SR, Griffith LC, Bate M (2012), “Autonomous circuitry for substrate exploration in freely moving Drosophila larvae.” Curr Biol 22(20):1861-70 Details

    Pulver SR, Berni J (2012), “The fundamentals of flying: simple and inexpensive strategies for employing Drosophila genetics in neuroscience teaching laboratories.” J Undergrad Neurosci Educ 11(1):A139-48 Details



    Beckwith EJ, Gorostiza EA, Berni J, Rezával C, Pérez-Santángelo A, Nadra AD, Ceriani MF (2013), “Circadian period integrates network information through activation of the BMP signaling pathway.” PLoS Biol 11(12):e1001733 Details


    Depetris-Chauvin A, Berni J, Aranovich EJ, Muraro NI, Beckwith EJ, Ceriani MF (2011), “Adult-specific electrical silencing of pacemaker neurons uncouples molecular clock from circadian outputs.” Curr Biol 21(21):1783-93 Details


    Berni J, Muldal AM, Pulver SR (2010), “Using Neurogenetics and the Warmth-Gated Ion Channel TRPA1 to Study the Neural Basis of Behavior in Drosophila.” J Undergrad Neurosci Educ 9(1):A5-A14 Details

    Pérez MM, Schachter J, Berni J, Quesada-Allué LA (2010), “The enzyme NBAD-synthase plays diverse roles during the life cycle of Drosophila melanogaster.” J Insect Physiol 56(1):8-13 Details


    Berni J, Beckwith EJ, Fernández MP, Ceriani MF (2008), “The axon-guidance roundabout gene alters the pace of the Drosophila circadian clock.” Eur J Neurosci 27(2):396-407 Details

    Fernández MP, Berni J, Ceriani MF (2008), “Circadian remodeling of neuronal circuits involved in rhythmic behavior.” PLoS Biol 6(3):e69 Details

    Rezával C, Berni J, Gorostiza EA, Werbajh S, Fagilde MM, Fernández MP, Beckwith EJ, Aranovich EJ, Sabio y García CA, Ceriani MF (2008), “A functional misexpression screen uncovers a role for enabled in progressive neurodegeneration.” PLoS One 3(10):e3332 Details


    Berni J, Rabossi A, Quesada-Allué LA (2003), “Phloxine B effect on immature stages of the Mediterranean fruit fly, Ceratitis capitata (Diptera: Tephritidae) (Wiedemann).” J Econ Entomol 96(3):662-8 Details