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From skin cells to brain cells: McGill researchers generate a cell critical to Alzheimer’s research

Researchers at the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital (MNI) of McGill University have recently discovered a method for transforming patients’ skin cells into a type of brain cell critical for understanding and treating neurological disorders like Alzheimer’s disease. According to the McGill Newsroom, the artificial cells are “virtually indistinguishable from human-derived microglia.” Postdoctoral fellow Luke… Keep Reading

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MNI research sheds light on link between magnets and memory

Desperately looking for new ways to cram for upcoming exams? Researchers at the Montreal Neurological Institute (MNI) of McGill University have discovered a way to improve sound memory performance in the brain using magnetic pulses. The researchers of the study, published on March 23 in Neuron, asked study participants to perform auditory memory tasks while… Keep Reading

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The rise of artificial intelligence: Google invests in deep learning in Montreal

Google has solidified Montreal’s newly-attained reputation as an international epicentre for Artificial Intelligence (AI) research by investing $4.5 million in the Montreal Institute for Learning Algorithms, a research lab at the University of Montreal (UdeM). Artificial Intelligence refers to computer systems performing tasks by mimicking human cognition, including visual or speech recognition, and advanced forms… Keep Reading

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McGill wins $84 million grant for neuroscience program

McGill University reaffirmed itself as one of the top neuroscience research centres in the world when it won an $84 million federal grant to fund the innovative Healthy Brains for Healthy Lives (HBFHL) program for the next seven years. Canada First Excellence Research Fund (CFERF) provided the grant as part of a federal science funding… Keep Reading

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Summer research briefs: Brain power

Molding memories Some people find it hard to remember what they had for lunch yesterday, while others can remember every detail of the house they grew up in. Understanding how memories are retained and recalled has always intrigued researchers, especially when seeking therapeutics for neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s. Researchers speculate that the lifespan of the… Keep Reading

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From the beat to the brain

Hans Christian Andersen said, “Where words fail, music speaks.” In a similar vein, Victor Hugo stated, “Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent.” It’s no secret that music has the power to change us, to uplift in times of joy, and to comfort in times of… Keep Reading

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Brain Awareness Montreal hosts annual Brain Bee

On April 2, deep within the Montreal Neurological Institute (MNI), Villa Maria 10th grader Melina Thibault was declared Montreal’s annual Brain Bee champion.  The competition, hosted by Brain Awareness Montreal (BAM), is designed to test high school students specifically on information about the brain. The day began with a written portion whereby students were asked… Keep Reading

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Montreal amongst cities hosting brain awareness week

Montreal’s Brain Awareness Week began in 1996 with the help of a group of neuroscience students at the Douglas Mental Health University Institute in Verdun in response to the formation of the U.S.-based Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives.  Today, the organization is operated by McGill, Concordia, l’Université de Montréal, and UQÁM. With 300 presentations in… Keep Reading

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Research Briefs—Nov. 11, 2014

Neuroscience of choking under pressure The experience of choking under pressure—in an exam, at the free-throw line, or in a presentation—is a familiar one. This week a study published in The Journal of Neuroscience attempted to explain what goes on in the brain when the stakes are raised. While monitoring their brains with an MRI scanner,… Keep Reading

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