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Jessica Bourgin

Jessica Bourgin

Ingénieur d’études en informatique, statistiques et calcul scientifique

Département de psychologie
Université Savoie Mont Blanc Jacob Bellecombette
BP 1104
73011 Chambery Cedex France

Tél. : +33 4 79 75 83 03

Research interests

  1. Normal and pathological aging (Alzheimer’s disease)
  2. Emotional attention
  3. Diffusion and functional MRI
  4. Eye-tracking



Functional repercussions of amygdala atrophy on emotional attention in Alzheimer’s disease : dissociation between automatic and controlled processes

Advisors : Pascal Hot & Laetitia Silvert

Keywords : emotion, amygdala, emotional processing, normal aging, Alzheimer’s disease

Link : Thesis

Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) is a complex neurodegenerative pathology involving large brain alterations and the emergence of cognitive and behavioral symptoms that impair daily life. Even now, AD is difficult to diagnose precisely, notably because of the low-specificity of its main characteristics (i.e., memory symptoms and hippocampal atrophy). The systematic assessment of brain alterations that occur during the first stages of AD showed the existence of amygdala atrophy, which could lead to disruptions in emotional processing. In this thesis, we conducted paradigms involving emotional attention, in other words attentional processes directed toward emotional or neutral stimuli, which may be disrupted in patients with amygdala lesions. We conducted two eye-tracking paradigms (i.e., eye movements recording) involving visual search and pro-saccade/anti-saccade tasks to get a fine analysis of attentional processes. The results of these two studies suggest that patients with AD present alterations of early emotional attention, which is involved in facilitating orienting toward emotional information. Using a neuroimaging analysis of structural and functional connectivity, we highlighted alterations in neural networks (including the amygdala) involved in attentional and emotional processes. Finally, we present the preliminary results of a neuroimaging study specifically exploring correlations between emotional attention processes and alterations in the corresponding neural network. Our data highlight (a) the presence of distinctive emotional attention deficits in patients with AD, which could help sharpen the diagnosis of this pathology, and (b) alterations in a large neural network including notably the amygdala, which may explain our behavioral data.



Bourgin, J., Roger, E., Pichat, C., Renard, F., Jaillard, A., Cousin, E., Silvert, L., Baciu, M., & Hot, P. (in preparation). Structural and Functional Connectivity of Salience and Attentional Networks in Alzheimer’s Disease.

Bourgin, J., Silvert, L., Borg, C., Morand, A., Sauvée, M., Moreaud, O., & Hot, P. (under review). Impact of Emotionally Negative Information on Attentional Processes in Normal Aging and Alzheimer’s Disease. Brain and cognition.

Bourgin, J., Silvert, L., & Hot, P. (under revision). Involvement of amygdala alterations in emotional processing in Alzheimer’s disease : a review. Neuropsychology Review.

Bourgin, J., Guyader, N., Chauvin, A., Juphard, A., Sauvée, M., Moreaud, O., Silvert, L., & Hot, P. (2018). Early emotional attention is impacted in Alzheimer’s disease : an eye-tracking study. Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, 63(4), 1445-1458. doi : 10.3233/JAD-180170.

Kauffmann, L., Bourgin, J., Guyader, N., & Peyrin, C. (2015). The neural bases of the semantic interference of spatial frequency-based information in scenes. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 27(12), 2394-2405. doi : 10.1162/jocn_a_00861.



Bourgin, J., Silvert, L., & Hot, P. (2018). Do patients with Alzheimer’s disease still have a crush on crashes ? Emotional attention in pathological aging. Journée Scientifique de l’EDISCE, Mai 31, Grenoble, France.

Bourgin, J., Morand, A., Cronenberger, L., Hajjam, N., Sauvée, M., Moreaud, O., Silvert, L., & Hot, P. (2018). Impact of emotionally negative information on engagement and disengagement processes in aging : a visual search paradigm in eye-tracking. The Consortium of European Research on Emotion (CERE), April 4-5, Glasgow, Scotland.

Bourgin, J., Oliva, S., Guyader, N., Chauvin, A., Juphard, A., Sauvée, M., Moreaud, O., & Hot, P. (2016). Attentional capture by emotional information in Alzheimer’s disease : automatic and motivational processes. Annual Meeting of the Société de Psychologie et de Neurosciences Cognitives on "Emotional Brain and Pathology", September 29-30, Lille, France.

Bourgin, J., Chauvin, A., Guyader, N., Juphard, A., Sauvée, M., Moreaud, O., & Hot, P. (2016). Attentional capture by emotional information in Alzheimer’s disease. 18th World Congress of Psychophysiology, August 31-September 4, Havana, Cuba.

Bourgin, J., Guyader, N., Chauvin, A., Juphard, A., Sauvée, M., Moreaud, O., & Hot, P. (2016). Processus attentionnels dans la pathologie d’Alzheimer : où est passée l’émotion ? Colloque du Groupe de Réflexion en Psychopathologie Cognitive, Juin 9-10, Chambéry, France.

Bourgin, J., Maire, C., Kauffmann, L., Chauvin, A., Guyader, N., & Peyrin, C. (2012). Comparisons of static and dynamic paradigms to investigate the Coarse-to-Fine categorization of scenes. European Conference on Visual Processing, Alghero, Sardinia, Italy.


Oral communications

Bourgin, J., Morand, A., Sauvée, M., Moreaud, O., Silvert, L., & Hot, P. (2018). Influence d’une information émotionnelle négative sur les processus d’engagement et de désengagement dans la Maladie d’Alzheimer : un paradigme de recherche visuelle en eye-tracking. Journées d’Etude du Vieillissement, Mars 5-6, Chambéry, France.

Bourgin, J., Hot, P., & Silvert, L. (2017). Attention émotionnelle dans la Maladie d’Alzheimer : approche en oculométrie. Séminaire invité, Juillet 6, Clermont-Ferrand, France.

Hot P., Bourgin, J. (2016). Contribution of affective neuroscience to the study of Alzheimer’s disease. 18th World Congress of Psychophysiology, September 1-4, La Havane, Cuba.


Scientific collaborations

GIPSA-lab, Grenoble : Nathalie Guyader, PhD.

Cellule de NeuroImagerie Fonctionnelle, plateforme IRMaGe, CHU de Grenoble : Emilie Cousin, PhD, Cédric Pichat.

Unité de Neuropsychologie - Pole de Psychiatrie et Neurologie, Centre Mémoire de Ressources et de Recherche, Grenoble : Drs. Olivier Moreaud, Mathilde Sauvée & Alexandra Juphard.

CHU Saint-Etienne, Centre Mémoire de Ressources et de Recherche : Céline Borg, PhD.



2016-2019 : Doctoral studies in cognitive sciences and neuropsychology (grant from ADR project, ARC 2 "Qualité de vie et vieillissement")

2016 : Master Research in Neuropsychology, Grenoble-Alpes University, Grenoble, France

2014 : Master Research in Cognitive and Social Psychology, Pierre-Mendès France University, Grenoble, France

2011 : Bachelor in psychology, Pierre-Mendès France University, Grenoble, France


Teaching : 2016-2020

Academic work methodology : Tutorial classes (1st year), 56h

Statistics : Tutorial classes (1st year), 45h

Experimental methodology : Tutorial classes (1st year), 18h

Neurophysiology : Tutorial classes (3rd year), 10h

Emotion & cognition : Lecture (4th year), 6h


External links

Personal website
OpenScience Framework

Voir en ligne : Jessica Bourgin