Synaptic transmission: from chronic pain to Alzheimer's disease
Yves De Koninck's work focuses on the transmission of signals from one neuron to another, also called synaptic transmission, and the necessary balance between excitatory and inhibitory signals in the brain and spinal cord. His research has shown how a normally benign stimulus can turn into a pain signal, leading to the development of chronic pain.
One person in five will experience chronic pain in their lifetime, a proportion that increases with age. This is the leading cause of disability in the country...
Promising discoveries on Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and other neurodegenerative diseases
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as ALS or Lou Gherig's disease, is a serious progressive disease that causes the death of motor neurons, which control muscle movement.
The death of motor neurons causes paralysis, which makes walking, speech, swallowing and eventually, breathing impossible. This is a terminal illness, without remission or cure.
Jean-Pierre Julien is a pioneer in ALS research
Professor Jean-Pierre Julien was the first to show that...
Innovative approaches to understand the role of immune cells in brain diseases
Dr. Jasna Kriz studies the role of brain immune cells, called microglia, in the healthy brain, in cerebral ischemia, and in neurodegenerative diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.
Dr. Kriz has developed mouse models in which she can detect the activation of genes of interest by bioluminescence, and thus see which genes are activated or inhibited during brain damage, or in neurodegenerative diseases. These models make it possible to see the expression of genes in real time and in...
Investigation of new therapeutic targets to slow or prevent the development of severe neurodegenerative diseases
Dr. Chantelle Sephton's research program aims to find new therapeutic targets to slow or stop the development of devastating diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and frontotemporal dementia. Dr. Sephton is particularly interested in the role of two proteins, named TDP-43 and FUS, that bind to RNA, the genetic material that is used to produce proteins. These RNA binding proteins play a crucial role in controlling the production of other proteins that are...