Shirley Fecteau

Shirley Fecteau,

Professor, Université Laval

Development of new therapies to treat cognitive disorders that affect attention, decision-making and emotions

Dr. Shirley Fecteau holds the Canada Research Chair in Neuroplasticity and is studying the effects of transcranial magnetic and electrical stimulation approaches to treat conditions such as alcoholism, smoking, schizophrenia, post-traumatic stress disorder and anxiety. Although this type of therapy, which involves passing a low intensity electric current between electrodes placed on the scalp, is effective in treating many of these conditions, the mechanisms underlying its action are not well known.

Dr. Fecteau's studies have shown that the passage of a weak electric current in the brain affects the level of several molecules, including activating neurotransmitters, during treatment. This discovery could explain how transcranial stimulation affects the behavior, symptoms, and neuronal activity of people who are treated repeatedly.

Transcranial stimulation is a particularly interesting approach to treating people in whom conventional treatments, such as mood-regulating drugs, do not work. Pre Fecteau is particularly focused on developing treatments for people with refractory alcohol, tobacco or other drug use disorders.

Researcher in cognitive neuroscience, interested in cognitive processes (eg., attention, decision making, emotion) and in associated cerebral substrates. The main tools used are magnetic and electrical transcranial stimulation, magnetic resonance imaging (anatomical, functional, spectroscopy), electroencephalography and cognitive training.

PhD students

  • Uziel Rayas
  • Jonathan Munro (supervisor : Martin Parent)
  • Rachel Barr (supervisor : Igor Timofeev)
  • Olivier Roy (co-supervisor : Mathieu Bilodeau)
  • Amy E Bouchard (co-supervisor : Claude Rouillard)
  • Thierry Provencher (supervisor : Célyne Bastien)
  • Marilyne Joyal (co-supervisor : Maximiliano Wilson)
  • William Vallet (co-supervisor : Igor Timofeev)
  • Maya Dickler
  • Jean Levasseur-Moreau (co-supervisor : Jean-Martin Beaulieu)
  • Antoine Hone-Blanchet

MSc students

  • Mathilde Lefebvre-Demers (co-supervisor : Nicolas Doyon)
  • Keven Binette (co-supervisor : Jean-Martin Beaulieu)
  • Francois Thiffault
  • Alessandra Cinti (supervisor : Alessio Avenanti)
  • Julie Goulet-Kennedy (co-supervisor : Michel Boivin)
  • Tobias Wensing (supervisor : Alexander Sack)
  • Simon Pelletier (supervisor : Francesca Cicchetti)
  • Jean Levasseur-Moreau (co-supervisor : Jean-Martin Beaulieu)

Post-doctoral fellows

  • Christophe Lenglos
  • Marine Mondino
  • Jerome Brunelin 
  • Adeline Etievant 
  • Rodrigo Deamo Assis

Research assistants

  • Amy E Bouchard
  • Jessica Ouellet
  • Emmanuelle Renauld
  • Valérie Chénard
  • Vénérée Randrianarisoa 

Nos recherches sont disponibles en ligne sur Pubmed

Cognitive processes
Transcranial stimulation
Magnetric resonance imaging
Cognitive training


2601 Chemin de la Canardière
Québec (Québec)
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