Andrew French

Professor emeritus


Related information

Personal Website


Phone: 902-494-1302
Mailing Address: 
3-C1, Tupper Building, 5850 College Street, PO Box 15000, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, B3H 4R2
Research Topics:
  • Neuroscience
  • Neurophysiology
  • Biophysics
  • Sensory physiology
  • Mechanosensory
  • Chemosensory
  • Vision
  • Neural coding
  • Bioinformatics


  • ARIC (University of Salford, UK)
  • MSc (University of Essex, UK)
  • PhD (University of Essex, UK)
  • PDF (University of Alberta)

Research interests

Professor French’s research interests are in the general area of sensory coding. He investigates how physical stimuli, such as touch, light or odors, are converted into nervous signals by processes of sensory transduction, and how this sensory information is transmitted to the central nervous system.

Selected publications

  • Warren, B., Fenton, G., Klenschi, E., Windmill, J.F.C. and French, A.S. (2020) Physiological basis of noise-induced hearing loss in a tympanal ear. Journal of Neuroscience 40: 3130-3140. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2279-19.2019
  • Hennenfent, A., Liu, H., Torkkeli, P.H. and French, A.S. (2020) RNA interference supports a role for Nanchung-Inactive in mechanotransduction by the cockroach, Periplaneta americana, tactile spine. Invertebrate Neuroscience 20: 1-12. doi: 10.1007/s10158-019-0234-x
  • Johnson, J.A.G., Liu, H., Höger, U., Rogers, S.M., Sivapalan, K., French, A.S. and Torkkeli, P.H. (2021) Mechanotransduction channel Piezo is widely expressed in the spider, Cupiennius Salei, mechanosensory neurons and central nervous system. Scientific Reports 11: 7994. doi: 10.1038/s41598-021-87202-1
  • French, A.S. and Warren, B. (2021) Gene transcription changes in a locust model of noise-induced deafness. Journal of Neurophysiology 125: 2264-2278. doi:10.1152/jn.00119.2021
  • Frolov, R.V., Severina, I., Novikova, E., Ignatova, I.I., Liu, H., Zhukovskaya, M., Torkkeli, P.H. and French, A.S. (2022) Opsin knockdown specifically slows phototransduction in broadband and UV-sensitive photoreceptors in Periplaneta americana. Journal of Comparative Physiology A. 208: 591–604. doi: 10.1007/s00359-022-01580-z

Selected awards and honours

  • 16th Sarrazin Lecturer of the Canadian Physiological Society, 1993
  • Award for Recognition of 25 Years Continuous Support, Medical Research Council of Canada, 1996
  • Filosofian tohtori honoris causa (Honorary doctoral degree in Natural Sciences) University of Oulu, Finland, 2009


  • Canadian Physiological Society: Treasurer 1982‑85; Vice‑President 1988-89; President 1989-90; Past-President 1990-91
  • Society for Neuroscience
  • Canadian Association for Neuroscience
  • International Society for Neuroethology


  • 1970‑75 Assistant Professor of Physiology, University of Alberta
  • 1975‑82 Associate Professor of Physiology, University of Alberta
  • 1976‑77 Visiting Fellow, Australian National University, Canberra, Australia
  • 1982‑96 Professor of Physiology, University of Alberta
  • 1995-2000 Professor and Head of Physiology and Biophysics, Dalhousie University
  • 1999-2023 Professor of Biomedical Engineering, Dalhousie University
  • 2000- Professor of Physiology and Biophysics, Dalhousie University