CAN Social at SfN2015 - Shay Chicago Toronto - CAN2016 meeting CAN2015 Michael Gordon CAN Newsletter January 2015 impact of neurological disorders in Canada

 

Study sheds light on the causes of cerebral palsy

Maryam Oskoui

Maryam Oskoui

Cerebral palsy (CP) is the most common cause of physical disability in children. Every year 140 children are diagnosed with cerebral palsy in Quebec.

It has historically been considered to be caused by factors such as birth asphyxia, stroke and infections in the developing brain of babies. In a new game-changing Canadian study, a research team from The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) and the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre (RI-MUHC) has uncovered strong evidence for genetic causes of cerebral palsy that turns experts’ understanding of the condition on its head.

Brief postnatal blindness triggers long-lasting reorganization in the brain

Olivier Collignon

Olivier Collignon

A brief period of postnatal visual deprivation, when early in life, drives a rewiring of the brain areas involved in visual processing, even if the visual restoration is completed well before the baby reaches one year of age, researchers at the University of Trento, McMaster University, and the University of Montreal revealed today in Current Biology.

Association between low vitamin D and MS

Brent Richards

Brent Richards

Having low levels of vitamin D doubles the risk of developing multiple sclerosis, an association that researchers conclude supports a causal relationship.
Low levels of vitamin D significantly increase the risk of developing multiple sclerosis (MS), according to a study led by Dr. Brent Richards of the Lady Davis Institute at the Jewish General Hospital, and published in PLOS Medicine.

Why we’re smarter than chickens

Benjamin Blencowe

Benjamin Blencowe

Researchers at U of T’s Donnelly Centre uncover protein part that controls neuron development.U of T researchers have discovered that a single molecular event in our cells could hold the key to how we evolved to become the smartest creatures on the planet.

Professor Benjamin Blencowe and his team at the Donnelly Centre for Cellular and Biomolecular Research have determined that a small change in a protein called PTBP1 spurred the creation of neurons and fuelled the evolution of mammalian brains to become the largest and most complex among vertebrates.

Scientists identify key gene associated with addiction

Salah El-Mestikawy

Salah El-Mestikawy

A new study published in the journal Molecular Psychiatry by a team led by Salah El Mestikawy, Ph.D., researcher at the Douglas Mental Health University Institute (CIUSSS de l’Ouest-de-l’île-de-Montréal), professor at McGill University and head of research at CNRS INSERM UPMC in Paris, opens the field to new understanding of the molecular mechanism underlying addiction in humans.