Pierre Etevenon, Doctor of Sciences, Doctor of Organic Chemistry, ESCOM engineer, Honorary Director of Research at the INSERM (Unit 320 Caen), is a pioneer of neurosciences.
Having attended Princeton (1965 – 1966) for studies in neuropharmacology, he specialized in quantitative EEG and global neurophysiology applied to the effects of hallucinogens with Humphrey Osmond, father of the “psychedelics”, and of Pr. Goldstein, a pioneer of quantified EEG and former senior scientist at the Collège de France. He later discovered the founders of transactional and humanist psychology and met Roland Fisher, then Timothy Leary in Princeton, Skinner in Los Angeles.
Returning to France, he became an INSERM researcher (1967) in neuropsychopharmacology alongside Prof. Boissier (U19 INSERM), following an internship in neurophysiology at the Marey Institute. He took over from (subsequent W.H.O Director) Dr. Nakajima at the “Experimental Neuropharmacology Laboratory” in the INSERM’s Unit 19, which he ran for ten years until his State thesis in quantitative electroencephalography in 1977. Following works in animal neuropharmacology on rabbits and rats, on which he studied by quantitative EEG the effects of several psychotropic drugs on the natural rhythms of wake and sleep states, he pursued his studies in clinical neuropharmacology and continued his career in Prof. Deniker’s Mental Illness Service by creating the “Laboratory of Quantitative Electroencephalography” (Research Team B1* at Paris V) in Dr. Verdeaux’s Functional Exploration of the Nervous System Service at the Centre Hospitalier Sainte-Anne. He thereby applied, in France during the 1970s, EEG cartography, which had just appeared in the United States (Prof. Duffy in Boston), to the study of schizophrenic and depressive patients, as well as to the effects of neuroleptics and antidepressants, jointly with those on control groups which could also be voluntary test subjects of psychotropic drugs (such as Delta9-THC, the active principle in Indian hemp). His curiosity as a researcher drove him, in 1972, to record with J.G. Henrotte and G. Verdeaux (19, 34), the EEG of Master Taisen Deshimaru, sitting in a meditative za-zen posture, and to later publish his results in La Recherche, then in La Revue d’EEG clinique et de neurophysiologie in 1973.
He further continued his research career at the INSERM in Cerebral Electrophysiology Imagery by creating the “Laboratory of EEG Cartography” (1999-2000) at the Esquirol Centre (Pr Zarifian) of the Côte de Nacre University Hospital Center then in the INSERM’s Unit 320 (Dr JC Baron) in Caen. Since 1995, together with Prof. Eustache, he has led the group “Behavior and Cognition” at the INSERM’s Unit 320, in collaboration with Pr Lechevalier, Head of Neurology, and with Prof. Pottier, Head of Functional Exploration and Physiology at the Caen UHC. His latest work has essentially been neuropsychology studies on healthy volunteer test subjects, who are subjected to complex tasks of sound, word, and musical tone recognition, analyzed by EEG cartography and by new methods such as amplitude modulation cartography in EEG, after applying the Hilbert Transform to EEG signals. His latest articles have also been pre-PET protocols for the the INSERM’s Unit 320, based around the positron camera of the Cycéron Centre in Caen.