Live 2020

Dr. Nitika Pant Pai participated in an Innovation Panel discussion as well as presenting on her international work with the HIVSmart! app at the Forum on Microbial Threats, U.S. National Academy of Sciences in Washington, D.C., in December 2019. This prestigious forum brings together leaders from government agencies, industry, academia, and nonprofit and philanthropic organizations to stimulate original thinking about the most pressing issues across the spectrum of microbial threats.
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Live 2020

A frequent injury in contact sports, concussions are not always easy to diagnose. This is especially true in hockey where players have to remove all their equipment to perform the standard balance assessment and then put it back on if they are cleared. For this reason, some hockey players may hide their symptoms and continue playing at the risk of their health. Now, a team of researchers led by Dr. J. Scott Delaney, from the Department of Emergency Medicine at the McGill University Health Centre, has made the first attempt at developing a balance test that could eventually be used in the concussion assessment of ice hockey players.
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Live 2020

Researchers at McGill University have discovered that a protein found in the membrane of our sensory neurons are involved in our capacity to feel mechanical pain, laying the foundation for the development of powerful new analgesic drugs. The study, published in Cell, is the first to show that TACAN, a highly conserved protein among vertebrates whose function remained unclear, is in fact involved in detecting mechanical pain by converting mechanical pressures into electric signals.
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Live 2020

In a study published in the journal Cell Reports, researchers at McGill University, Kyoto University and INSERM/University of Paris show that an organic compound produced by the intestinal flora, the metabolite 4-Cresol, exhibits protective effects against type 1 and type 2 diabetes by stimulating the proliferation and function of insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas. These results pave the way for new therapeutic options that could improve the situation of millions of patients.
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Live 2020

“Traumatic brain injuries are the leading cause of death and disability in children and young adults, but little is known about the factors that provoke them,” says Guido Guberman, a doctoral and medical student in the Department of Neurology and Neurosurgery at McGill University. The study published in the Canadian Journal of Psychiatry is the first to show that childhood behaviours identified by teachers such as inattention-hyperactivity predicted subsequent traumatic brain injuries. The study also found that boys who sustained TBIs in childhood were at greater risk of sustaining TBIs in adolescence.
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Live 2020

The number of antidepressants available to patients is dizzying, which can make it difficult to determine which prescription will be the best fit – it’s not uncommon for patients to try several drugs before finding one that works for them. Erica Moodie and a group of researchers at McGill University hope to determine which anti-depressants might work best for certain types of patients based on factors like their age and BMI (body mass index). The project, which involves several researchers from McGill and the U.S. consortium Kaiser Permanante, is funded by an Innovative Ideas grant from McGill’s Healthy Brains, Healthy Lives.
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Live 2020

Despite billions of dollars spent and decades of research, computation in the human brain remains largely a mystery. Meanwhile, we have made great strides in the development of artificial neural networks, which are designed to loosely mimic how brains compute. We have learned a lot about the nature of neural computation from these artificial brains and it’s time to take what we’ve learned and apply it back to the biological ones. In a paper published in Nature Neuroscience, my co-authors and I argue that the lessons we have learned from artificial neural networks can guide us down the right path of understanding the brain as a computational system rather than as a collection of indecipherable cells.
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Live 2020

In a groundbreaking study published in Nature, an American team of researchers from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Emory University in Atlanta achieved a long-sought-after goal: to push the HIV virus out of dormancy. “We are halfway there,” says Dr. Jean-Pierre Routy, Senior Scientist at the Research Institute of the MUHC, Clinical Director of the Chronic Viral Illness Service at the MUHC, and the only Canadian to have participated in the study.
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Live 2020

A type of fatty liver disease that commonly affects patients with HIV can be safely treated with vitamin E, a McGill-led study has found. “Vitamin E has been shown to improve fatty liver in the general population,” says the study’s lead author Dr. Giada Sebastiani, Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine, McGill University and scientist at the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre. “Here we provide evidence for its beneficial effect and safety in people living with HIV, who have a higher prevalence of fatty liver disease.” The study appears in the February 1, 2020 issue of the journal AIDS.
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Live 2020

New research spearheaded by McGill University has discovered that bacteriophages (viruses that infect bacteria) found in the intestinal tracts of children may play a role in childhood stunting, a significant impediment to growth that affects 22% of children under the age of five around the world. The study, published today in Cell Host & Microbe, also suggests that because they affect the abundance and diversity of bacterial communities in the gastrointestinal tract, these viruses could also be used to improve health.
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