Francis obtained his pharmacology degree from the University of Sherbrooke in 2014. During his master in Pr. Guillaume Léonard lab, he studied the impact of transcranial magnetic stimulation (virtual lesion paradigm) on pain perception and the development of chronic pain. He developed a growing interest on how the brain processes pain and about the neurophysiological changes that may lead to chronic pain. Aiming to better understand the impact of neurostimulation on the brain in pain, he added functional magnetic resonance imaging to his experimental paradigm during his PhD at the University of Sherbrooke in neuroimaging with Prs. Guillaume Léonard and Kevin Whittingstall.
Sara obtained an engineering degree in Biology from the National Institute of applied science and technologies in Tunisia. Her passion for neuroscience led her to pursue a master degree in cognitive neuroscience in EPHE-Sorbonne Paris, France. After that, she was offered the opportunity to continue in neuroanatomy field in a PhD program in UQTR, Canada. Currently on her third year of PhD, under the supervision of Mathieu Piché and Gilles Bronchti, she investigates the neuroanatomy of pain in a congenital blind mouse model.
Myriam graduated from the Université de Moncton in New-Brunswick with an Honours degree in psychology in 2014. Since then, she is a Ph.D student in clinical psychology at the Université de Montréal under the supervision of Dr. Sophie Bergeron. Her clinical and research interests encompass an interdisciplinary perspective on psychological and interpersonal factors affecting couples coping with chronic pain. For her doctorate research, she is particular interested in genito-pelvic pain affecting couple’s sexual health and well-being. Using a daily diary approach, her doctorate research project attemps to examine the role of perceived injustice, shame and guilt among women with provoked vestibulodynia – the most common form of genito-pelvic pain – and their partners.
Martine studied Biology at Université du Québec à Chicoutimi and then got her master’s degree in Experimental Medicine at Université Laval. She is currently working on her doctorate in Neurosciences at the same university. Her main area of interest is the neuromodulation of pain signals by spinal cord stimulation. Her goal is to evaluate the effects of this type of stimulation on sensory perceptions. She is currently working under the direction of Dr. Michel Pruhomme and the co-direction of Dr Sylvine Cottin at the CHU de Québec in Quebec City.
Nitasha graduated from Carleton University with an honours degree in neuroscience and mental health in 2015. During her time here, she was first introduced to pain research, which inspired her to apply for a PhD in this field. Now she is starting her third year of her PhD in the neuroscience program at McGill University in Dr. Terence Coderre’s lab. Her project focuses on examining the contribution of metabotropic glutamate receptors in animal models of persistent pain.
Élora graduated from the University of Sherbrooke with a degree in biochemistry in 2012. Throughout the four internships of her undergraduate studies, with Prof. Philippe Sarret as her mentor, she studied the role of the glia in the modulation of spinal nociceptive processings. As a result of her studies and lab experience, she has developed a profound interest in the pain research field. She joined Prof. Sarret’s lab (Dept. of Pharmacology – Physiology, Université de Sherbrooke) as a Master’s student and transferred to the PhD program in 2015. Using a breast cancer bone metastasis model, she is investigating pharmacological and DsiRNA-based gene inhibition of the chemokinergic system in bone cancer pain management.
Élie earned a diploma in biochemistry, cell biology and physiology from Université de Franche-Comté (Besançon, France) in 2009; in 2010 he obtained his Bachelor in medical sciences from Université Claude Bernard – Lyon I (Villeurbanne, France). After eight months of internship at the Institute for Biology and Chemistry of Proteins (Lyon, France) where he studied the interaction between ABCG2 and the Human serum albumin in drug resistance, Élie decided to join the laboratory of Prof. R. Leduc (Dept. of Pharmacology) and Prof. P. Sarret (Dept. of Physiology and Biophysics) for his MSc in pharmacology in October 2010. He worked on the development of a BRET-Based assay for high throughput screening in collaboration with Tranzyme Pharma and Prof. M. Bouvier (U. Montréal). In 2012, Élie started his PhD in pharmacology working on the signalization of Neurotensin and Apelin receptors with the aim to discover new therapeutics for pain management.
Sarah, originally a Chicago native, graduated from the University of Denver with an Honors Science degree in 2012. She studied Cognitive Neuroscience, and worked with drosophila in a developmental neurobiology lab. She studied abroad in both England and Spain, which inspired her to pursue graduate studies in Montreal (The most “European city” in North America!). She is just starting her 1st year as a PhD Student, transferring after 2 years in the masters program. She currently investigates sex differences in chronic pain, as well as female-specific endogenous modulation of pain during pregnancy. Sarah is very passionate about inter-lab collaboration, especially among graduate students. Sarah is very active and enjoys the outdoors. She is a running enthusiast, but also loves biking and hiking.
Jimena Perez Sanchez
Jimena obtained the Biology degree from the University of Queretaro in Mexico in 2010. Her interest in sensory systems lead her to pursue a Masters degree where she studied the modulation of tactile information and, especially, nociception. Under the supervision of Dr. Gerardo Rojas Piloni, she studied the mechanisms by which descending supraspinal systems regulate nociceptive information at the spinal cord level, in which spinal inhibitory interneurons take part. In order to continue her understanding the complex network of interneurons in the gating of pain, Jimena recently moved to Quebec to work under the supervision of Dr. Yves De Koninck at Laval University. Her PhD research focuses on the organization of the GABAergic and glycinergic inhibitory systems in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord and their regulation during chronic pain states.
Beatriz Monteiro received her veterinary degree at Sao Paulo State University (Unesp – Botucatu), Brazil. Following her graduation, she completed two different small animal internship programs at the University of Guelph, Canada. During that period she gained a great deal of clinical experience, but had also a strong desire to pursue an academic career. Dr. Monteiro is now a fully licensed veterinarian in Canada, and is currently doing a PhD in Pharmacology at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Montreal under the supervision of Dr. Eric Troncy within the GREPAQ (Groupe de recherche en pharmacologie animale du Québec). Her research focuses in characterizing and treating chronic pain in dogs and cats. Most precisely, osteoarthritis and cancer-related pain. Dr. Monteiro believes in novel, cutting-edge and translational research. She has a highly motivated attitude and strong work ethic. She loves animals, nature, and being with friends and family.
Claire graduated from Queen’s University with an Honours Science degree in 2009. It was here that she was first introduced to pain research while working with Dr. Cathy Cahill on her Honours Thesis Project. Her experience in research was so positive that she moved to Montreal to join the lab of Dr. Alfredo Ribeiro-da-Silva at McGill University in the Fall of 2009. She is now a 4th year PhD Student investigating how changes to the peripheral nervous system drive and maintain neuropathic pain. In addition to being a QNJPI board member since 2010, Claire is actively involved in McGill’s Alan Edwards Centre for Research on Pain. She is passionate about getting people more involved in the scientific community. Science consumes most of her life, but when she can escape from the lab she enjoys skiing with the McGill Snowboard Club, exploring Montreal by bike and dancing the night away with friends.
Mélanie graduated from the University of Sherbrooke in pharmacology in 2005. She then started her master’s project under Dr Sylvie Lafrenaye and Serge Marchand’s supervision, in the Pain Research Lab of the Center for Clinical Research of the CHUS. In 2013, she completed her PhD studies in the same lab. Her research examined the long-term effects of neonatal pain in subjects either born preterm or full-term. She is now a research assistant in the Gynaecologic Pain Research Lab of the Center for Clinical Research, in Sherbrooke. She has been a member of the QNJPI since the beginning and attended every annual research days. It was a natural transition to be now part of the board! When she is not working, Mélanie, who always needs to move, is enjoying dancing, climbing, swimming and hicking.
Whitney graduated from the University of British Columbia with an Honours degree in psychology in 2009. Her passion for pain research began during her thesis research projects in the UBC Pain Lab under the supervision of Dr. Kenneth Craig. She is now a 4th year PhD student in clinical psychology at McGill University under the supervision of Dr. Michael Sullivan. Her research examines psychosocial predictors of pain and disability in patients with chronic musculoskeletal pain. She has been a QNJPI board member since January 2013 and is excited to engage with trainees in Quebec working in diverse areas of pain research. When she is not busy with research and clinical work, Whitney enjoys running, reading a good book, and traveling (London and Edinburgh are personal favourites!).
Jean graduated from the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College in Toronto in 1984. In private practice for 19 years, he started teaching in 1995 at the chiropractic department at the Université de Trois-Rivières, PQ, Canada. Sessional lecturer, he was appointed adjunct professor from 2006-09 and held the position of Director of clinical practicums. Jean went back to university and is now a second-year doctoral student at the University of Montreal under the supervision of Sylvie Le May RN, PhD and Dr Hubert Labelle.at the CHU Ste-Justine. Jean research project focuses on the efficacy of spinal manipulative therapy for back pain associated with adolescent idiopathic scoliosis. When he is not researching, he likes to ride his bike and is a Vélo Québec certified cycling escort.
Caroline is a registered nurse and a postdoctoral fellow in neuroscience since September 2013 under the supervision of Dr Nadia Gosselin and Dr Gilles Lavigne at Hôpital du Sacré-Coeur de Montréal, a health center affiliated to the Université de Montréal, Québec, Canada. Her research interest focuses on the validation of electrophysiological makers of conscious pain perception in critically ill traumatic brain injured (TBI) patients and on the prevention of chronic pain in this vulnerable group. During her PhD in nursing at McGill University, she collaborated to the validation process of behavioral indicators of pain in nonverbal adults in the intensive care unit. Her current postdoctoral work focuses on examining the contribution of persistent pain to the neuroanatomical changes observed in the months following a TBI. In particularly, she investigates the contribution of altered patterns of behavioral and cortical excitability in the intensive care unit to the development of chronic pain 1 year post-TBI.
Ihab received his Honours degree in Cellular/Molecular Biology from the University of Ottawa in 2010. The rewarding experience he gained during his honours research project encouraged him to pursue graduate studies in neuroscience. He joined the Integrated Program in Neuroscience at McGill University in 2010. As a Master’s candidate in the laboratory of Dr. Philippe Séguéla, he interrogated the neuroprotective role of ASIC channels under ischemic conditions. Ihab transferred to the PhD program under the same supervision in December 2011, with a complete change in research topic leading him to the “painful” side of science. His current work focuses on investigating the optogenetic modulation of peripheral nociceptive pathways in vivo. Ihab is interested in promoting interdisciplinary interactions in order to develop collaborative projects addressing major caveats/challenges in the pain field. He also participates in many extracurricular activities, such as teaching neuroscience to high school students. To overcome science-induced stress, he enjoys hanging out with friends over a drink or a BBQ, playing team sports particularly basketball, and outdoor activities such