Axis director: Christophe Proulx
The Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience axis studies the molecular aspects of neuronal communication, involved in sensations, memory, learning and disorders of the nervous system. This axis has an essential role in supporting the centre's mission, as it touches on the bases of brain neurochemistry, brain development, and brain functioning, by signal integration and information processing.
The researchers in this axis work in neurobiologie, working specifically on the study of mechanisms of cellular signalling, responsible for:
- neuronal death
- development of neural networks
- structural and functional plasticityof neurons and adult networks in health and disease,
- neuronal communication
- protein structure and function
- synaptic signaling and plasticity
In addition, the axis includes researchers with broad expertise in
- ultrastructural microscopy,
- molecular biology,
- cellular imaging,
- membrane biophysics,
- neuronal modeling,
- systems biology,
- machine learning
This diversity favours fruitful collaborations and multidisciplinary studies aiming to better understand the normal and pathological working of the nervous system.
The axis has a solid foundation in basic research and in the development of new experimental approaches. The interface with researchers of the Integrative Neuroscience and Experimental Therapies axis allows us to use the knowledge we acquire about basic cellular mechanisms to understand complex neuronal systems and animal behaviour. It also allows us to transfer to intact animals the novel techniques developped in cell and tissue cultures.
The researchers of the axis founded the Neurophotonics Centre, a unique infrastructure which sustains the development of new technologies derived from photonics to push the boundaries of neuroscience (neurophotonics.ca).
The Neurophotonics Centre organises the yearly Frontiers in Neurophotonics Summer School (www.neurophotonics.ca/school) since 2007, to which are invited selected students from around the world and speakers which are world leaders in neurophotonics. The school offers hands-on training in optical imaging and state-of-the-art photo-intervention developed at the Neurophotonics Centre.