Co-Directors: Pascale Tremblay and Simon Duchesne
Created in 2009, the Centre intégré en neuroimagerie et neurostimulation de Québec (CINQ) is a grouping of nearly 270 researchers, students, research professionals and clinicians from Université Laval and its affiliated research centres and hospitals. The CINQ is co-directed by Pascale Tremblay, Professor in the Department of Rehabilitation at Université Laval, and Simon Duchesne, Professor in the Department of Radiology at Université Laval. In 2019, the CINQ merged with the future MRI platform at the CERVO Brain Research Centre, which is scheduled to open in 2020. The imaging centre will be equipped with a Siemens Prisma 3T MRI machine and a 7T small animal machine.
The members of the CINQ form a multidisciplinary community interested in the study of the brain. Members come from 11 faculties of the University and represent some 20 departments: Rehabilitation, Psychology, Radiology, Medicine, Psychiatry and Neurosciences, Kinesiology, Physics and Optics, Chemistry, Biology, Anthropology and Linguistics.
The mission of the CINQ is to promote and facilitate research in neuroimaging and neurostimulation in Quebec City. This mission is achieved through four types of initiatives:
1. The organization of scientific, methodological and networking activities
The CINQ has organized over 100 events over the past 6 years, including more than 70 methodological and scientific conferences, 8 scientific days, and an international symposium on the neurosciences of bilingualism.
2. Student training
CINQ organized 12 practical workshops and 2 international summer schools, the first on structural MRI imaging of the brain (2015) and the second on the study of brain connectivity (2017). In addition, the CINQ participated in the research projects of dozens of students at all university levels and enabled 5 students to participate in conferences or training courses through its training scholarship program.
3. Support for research teams in carrying out their research projects
The CINQ contributes to the development of regional expertise in neuroimaging and neurostimulation in several ways. Among our significant accomplishments, we negotiated a service agreement in 2010, renewed in 2018, guaranteeing access to the Philips platform of 3 Tesla MRI Quebec, a private clinic, at a preferential rate for all CINQ members. Thanks to two research agreements between the CINQ, Phillips Healthcare and IRM Québec, CINQ members have access to advanced sequences in diffusion MRI (multi-directional) and MRI spectroscopy (MEGA-PRESS), in addition to having access to anatomical, vascular and functional sequences that allow them to carry out state-of-the-art studies.
In addition to guaranteed access to MRI equipment, the CINQ has also established a loan program for compatible MRI equipment. Through this program, CINQ members have access to many specialized pieces of equipment to complete their projects, such as compatible MRI response boxes, a projector and a metal detector. The CINQ team has also developed a guide to using MRI in Quebec City. To facilitate the start-up of new studies, the CINQ offers training on MRI safety and ethics to all research teams. A pilot project program also allows members of the CINQ to take advantage of one hour of free MRI to start each new project.
4. Knowledge Mobilization
The CINQ's knowledge transfer mission is operationalized in different ways. For example, the CINQ has produced original scientific and technical content on brain imaging and brain stimulation methods, all of which is available on its website. The CINQ has also organized several conferences for the general public, one on neuroimaging methods (2016), the second on dementia (2018) and the third (2020) on the contribution of neuroimaging and neurostimulation to the advancement of science.