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Congratulations to Antoine Godin and Benoit Labonté, chairholders of two new Sentinel North Research Chairs

Quebec City, November 6, 2019 – Université Laval announces the creation of two new chairs as part of its ambitious Sentinel North transdisciplinary research program: the Sentinel North Partnership Research Chair in Light to Probe Life and the Environment and the Sentinel North Partnership Research Chair in Molecular Neurobiology of Mood Disorders.

These two Chairs, which bring the total number of Chairs created under the program to ten, will contribute to one of Sentinel North’s main objectives: the development of tools and technologies to better understand the northern environment and its impact on people and their health.

"By encouraging the convergence of our institution's centres of excellence in northern research, optics-photonics, cardiometabolic health and brain health, the Sentinel North program is one of our greatest sources of pride," said Université Laval President Sophie D'Amours.

Antoine Godin: Sentinel North Partnership Research Chair in Light to Probe Life and the Environment

The main objective of this Chair will be to develop photonic and analytical tools to probe the organization of living tissues at the nanoscopic scale. These tools will make it possible to study the reorganization of the brain that occurs at different stages of neurological diseases such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, epilepsy or autism. They will reveal structural and functional changes in the brain that occur in the early stages of these diseases so that they can be diagnosed early.

"The Chair's work will also have a direct impact on field research by contributing to the development of portable non-invasive technologies that can be used in remote northern areas," explained Chairholder Antoine Godin, Professor at the Faculty of Medicine of Université Laval and researcher at the CERVO Brain Research Centre.

Learn more about the Chaire de recherche en partenariat Sentinelle Nord sur la lumière pour sonder le vivant et l'environnement

Benoit Labonté: Sentinel North Partnership Research Chair in Molecular Neurobiology of Mood Disorders

"It is estimated that women are 2 to 3 times more likely to suffer from depression than men," says Chairholder Benoit Labonté, who is a professor at the Faculty of Medicine of Université Laval and a researcher at the CERVO Brain Research Centre. Yet, even if the phenomenon is known, the molecular mechanisms that govern it remain largely misunderstood."

The Chair's work will focus on understanding the molecular dynamics by which the environment modifies the genome according to gender, and how these modifications increase the susceptibility of men and women to the stresses of daily life. The Chair's work will have a major impact on the health of populations by changing the way depression is diagnosed and by proposing new gender-specific therapeutic approaches.

Learn more about the Chaire de recherche en partenariat Sentinelle Nord en neurobiologie moléculaire des troubles de l'humeur

These Research Chairs were created with the financial support of the CERVO Foundation, Pfizer and Sentinel North.

About Sentinel North

Funded by the Canada First Research Excellence Fund, the Sentinel North Strategy allows Université Laval to draw on over a half-century of northern and optics/photonics research to develop innovative new technology, train the next generation of transdisciplinary researchers and improve our understanding of the northern environment and its impact on human beings and their health.

Source of text source: Sentinelle Nord

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