top of page


David Thura


Ph.D. Neuroscience





Contact information

Lyon Neuroscience Research Center - IMPACT Team
Inserm U1028 - CNRS UMR 5292 - Lyon 1 University

Bâtiment Inserm

16 avenue Doyen Lépine
69676 Bron Cedex


Phone: +33 (0)4 72 91 34 14
E-mail : 


Internship positions are regularly available in my lab to study the neural activity in the cortico-basal ganglia circuits during foraging behavior in monkeys. If you're interested, feel free to contact me.

- D. -  

  • Facebook Clean Gris
  • LinkedIn gris propre
  • Gris propre Twitter

Research interests

Decision-making between actions

"Controlled" environnement

Human behavior

Monkey behavior

Monkey Neurophysiology

"Naturalistic" environnement

NEWS (last update: Feb 2024)

February 2024

Screenshot (20).png

I am thrilled to share our latest study: Evidence for interacting but decoupled controls of decisions and movements in non-human primates, carried out as part of Clara Saleri's doctorate. Well done Clara ! 

January 2024

Very happy that our team session, "Neural dynamics of sensorimotor decision-making: The role of basal ganglia, motor cortex, and prefrontal cortex", proposed by Irene Lacal (German Primate Center), has been selected in the conference program ! Excited to present our work describing the role of PMd and the basal ganglia in action selection and invigoration in monkeys.

October 2023


I was delighted to participate in a fantastic meeting organized by the GDR NeuralNet in the beautiful Marseille. I was able to present our recent data showing the coordination of decision and action in the cortex-basal ganglia network during foraging in macaques.

October 2023

Screenshot (328).png

Very happy to have (modestly) contributed to this neuropharmacology study where we compare the effects of atomoxetine (noradrenaline antagonist) and reward on the behavior (motivation, perception, decision, action) of the macaque monkey . Congratulations to the whole team !

June 2023

Screenshot (321).png

May 2023

Very happy to have organized a symposium on decision-action interactions during goal-directed behavior on the occasion of NeuroFrance2023. Thanks to the talented speakers for agreeing to contribute:

Clara Saleri, Thomas Morvan, Nicolas Meirhaeghe, Gerard Derosiere and Thomas Michelet.


May 2023

Laboratory retreat with the entire CRNL Impact team for two days in the Dombes (Ain, France). Very happy and proud to be part of this great team!


February 2023


Happy to see this paper out in the European Journal of Neuroscience! We describe how humans adjust their decision and action in an integrated manner following decision and action errors.

Screenshot (310).png

February 2023

Screenshot (20).png

New preprint

Glad to share a new study in which we investigate the interplay between decision and movement efforts in healthy humans.

Check out the preprint

December 2022


Happy to see this paper out in Plos Biology! With Jean-Francois Cabana, Albert Feghaly, and Paul Cisek.

Screenshot (304).png

October 2022

October marks a major milestone for the laboratory and its development: our first multi-electrode recordings in the cortex and soon in the cortex-basal ganglia network of the behaving monkey.

July 2022

Great news for the lab: the project BASALCOST, coordinated by David Robbe (Inmed, Marseille), with Bastien Berret (Université Paris-Saclay), is selected and funded by the @AgenceRecherche !

Goals: Reveling the behavioral determinants of foraging in various motor cost contexts and better understanding the role of the basal ganglia in this behavior. 


July 2022

On Tuesday July 12 at @FENSorg my excellent PhD student Clara Saleri shared some cool data on the impact of choice and motor outcome on the next decision and action. Great job, bravo Clara! #FENS2022


May 2022


                            New published review

I am glad to promote a new review published in the Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Neuroscience, with my mentor Paul Cisek.

In this review we describe how accumulation-to-bound models have been highly successful in explaining behavior in a very wide range of tasks. We also mention their limitations, which recently motivated several important modifications to their basic assumptions. The review especially discusses the duration of the sensory evidence integration and the stability of the decision threshold in natural situations.

Cisek P, Thura D (2022) Decision-making models over time. Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Neuroscience


                             New accepted paper !

Happy to see this great collaborative work with Gerard Derosiere, Julie Duque and Paul Cisek accepted in PLOS Biology.

Derosiere G, Thura D, Cisek P, Duque J (2022) Hasty sensorimotor decisions rely on an overlap of broad and selective changes in motor activity. PLoS Biol. 20(4): e3001598.

March 2022

January 2022

New preprint

Curious about the consequences of a  decision or a movement error on the subsequent decision and motor performances in humans?

Check out our latest preprint:

Screenshot (20).png
Screenshot (59).png

October 2021

Our study on the respective effects of motor effort and time on action selection and initiation is published in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience. Congratulations Clara and Amelie !


October 2021

Happy to see my comment of the article: "Précis of Vigor: Neuroeconomics of Movement control" by Alaa A. Ahmed and Reza Shadmehr, published in Behavioral and Brain Sciences.


August 2021

Screenshot (20).png

New preprint

Happy to be part of another fruitful collaborative work with Gerard Derosiere, Julie Duque and Paul Cisek.

"Overlapping influences shape motor activity during hasty sensorimotor decisions"

June 2021

Screenshot (209).png

Happy to share a new article in press -"Trading accuracy for speed over the course of a decision", the result of a fruitful collaboration with Gerard Derosiere, Paul Cisek and Julie Duqué

Screenshot (208).png

May 2021

Screenshot (20).png

New preprint

Are motor costs part of the decision-making and movement initiation computations? Between time and effort, which motor cost is the most impactful for decision-making and movement initiation? How variable are effects of motor costs on behavior at the individual level? 


Find some answers to these questions and more in our latest preprint. Congratulations Clara and Amelie on this nice behavioral study ! 

We are (virtually) here at

NeuroFrance 2021!


Please come by and say Hi to Amélie who will show you the effect of motor accuracy requirements on decision-making in both human and non-human primates.


Don't forget to come to Clara's poster which describes the effects of motor duration and energy costs on human decision-making and movement initiation.


April 2021


Congrats Clara for presenting your first poster during an international meeting !

NCM 2021 was great ! Thank you to the organizers. We also thank all the attendees who came by and showed interest in our work.


April 2021

Implantation planning in progress...

With the free software 3D Slicer, a CT-scan and a MRI scan done at the Cermep, we are now choosing the best location and orientation of the recording chamber so we can simultaneously record in PMd/M1, the putamen, GPe, GPi.  


March 2021

Happy to find out that my invited commentary on "Précis of Vigor: Neuroeconomics of Movement Control" by Reza Shadmehr and Alaa A. Ahmed, entitled "Neuroscience needs integrated behavior", has been officially accepted for publication in Behavioral and Brain Sciences. Stay tuned for the online version of the article.

March 2021

Upcoming presentations:

March 26: German Neuroscience Society annual meeting - Live discussion of my presentation on the population dynamics in the cortex and basal ganglia. - Online


April 19: EPS workshop on decision-making in voluntary actions - Neural correlates of decision between actions in a cortico-basal ganglia network. UCL, London - Online

April 20-22: Clara will present her poster on the effect of action duration and energy on decision-making during the 2021 annual meeting of the Society for Neural Control of Movement. - Online

February 2021

New page on the site !

Learn more about the equipment we are using in the lab. 


December 2020

Very happy to find out that the team ATIP/Avenir label will be renewed and the research funded for two additional years (until August 2023).

Thank you to the Inserm and CNRS ATIP/Avenir committee for trusting my program. 


November 2020


Very grateful to Katja Heuer and Roberto Toro for making their beautiful poster free to download in high resolution. Aesthetic and educational decoration. Their paper on the evolution of neocortical folding across 34 primate species can be found here: 10.1016/j.cortex.2019.04.011

November 2020

Screenshot (99).png

Very happy to see our latest paper discussed in the sensorimotor control and learning journal club. @Amelie_Reynaud showed how humans can flexibly adjust their decision and movement speed/accuracy trade-off depending on task constraints.

October 2020

New preprint

How do the cortex and the basal ganglia share labor during decision and action?

With Jean-Francois Cabana, Albert Feghaly and Paul Cisek we analyzed population activity from PMd, M1, dlPFC, GPe and GPi in two monkeys performing a decision task.

We show that decisions about actions involve a unified dynamical attractor system distributed across the cortex and basal ganglia.

Screenshot (20).png

July 2020

Congratulations Clara Saleri for being awarded with a doctoral scholarship from the French Ministry of Research ! Very happy to welcome you onboard and I look forward to studying the neural bases of decision-making together !


July 2020

Very happy to see the second paper of the lab accepted in one of my favorite journal, Journal of Neurophysiology ! Congratulations Amelie Reynaud and Clara Saleri on this important step toward a better understanding of the relationship between decision-making and motor control  !

Screenshot (1).png
Screenshot (155).png

My Ph.D. research in Driss Boussaoud's lab focused on the FEF, a major component of the cerebral network that is thought to contribute to decision making, as well as to visual and oculomotor processes. We used single-neuron recordings in monkeys to test the hypothesis that FEF neurons integrate signals from the hand to ensure adapted ocular exploration of peripersonal space. 


My post-doctoral position in Paul Cisek’s lab provided me with the opportunity to pursue the exploration of complex integrative functions, i.e. decision making, in brain regions such as PMd, M1 and PFC. We investigated the neural correlates of dynamic decision-making in monkeys trained to perform a reach decision task. We showed that premotor and primary motor cortex activity reflects the competition between potential options and signals the commitment to a choice before movement initiation.  


As a research associate in Paul Cisek's lab at University of Montreal, we explored the behavior and the neural bases of speed-accuracy trade-off adjustments during dynamic decisions and movement execution. We investigate this question under the affordance competition and the urgency-gating frameworks. 

Please check out a more detailed overview of my career and accomplishments



On this page I describe the different pieces of equipment that we are currently using in the lab, for both behavioral and electrophysiological experiments conducted in humans and monkeys


In this section I share articles that caught my eye and I make some material available, mostly slides from various courses or talks. Feel free to check it out

bottom of page