July 2016
The Neuro News is a monthly newsletter highlighting activities at the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital.



$4 Million for Intellectual Disabilities Research

The Sandra and Alain Bouchard Foundation donated $4-million to the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital, and established The Sandra and Alain Bouchard Intellectual Disability Research Program. 


Learn more about what inspired generous gift.



The Wounded Brain Healed Book Launch and Cocktail

On June 16, 2016, The Neuro held a book launch for long-awaited book, The Wounded Brain Healed. Co-author Dr. Richard Leblanc discussed the writing of the book, and presented some photos and historical highlights and, Dr. Hanna Pappius detailed the role that women played in The Neuro’s famed history.


Learn more about, or purchase The Wounded Brain Healed.

Big Data Provides New Tools

A new partnership with EMC Corporation will bring greater computing capacity to the McGill community. Among those benefiting are the brain-mapping project of Alan Evans’ lab at The Neuro. 

Learn more about this exciting new collaboration!


Dr. Victor Dzau Returns to McGill

Renowned McGill University alumnus, Dr. Victor Dzau, current President of the National Academy of Medicine, was back in Montreal in May 2016. He delivered the opening keynote lecture at the Simnovate International Summit on May 5, and on the following day, he delivered the seventh iteration of the Andrew F. Holmes Dean of Medicine Distinguished Lecture series, hosted by McGill Global Health Programs.
Learn more and watch the Holmes lecture.


New Cohort Trained in PET

Thanks to The Neuro’s first positron emission tomography (PET) comprehensive training workshop, a new cohort of people successfully completed their training.  Congratulations to all attendees, and to the organizing team and lecturers, who worked hard to the training a reality and an overwhelming success. 




Community Connections


Winter is Coming!

Although the sun and hot weather that we’re currently enjoying makes November seem very far away, Danielle Lepage is already hard at work planning the eighth edition of her benefit evening to support research into Sensorial Neuropathy – the rare neurological disease that affects so many in the Lanaudière region of Quebec. Her herculean efforts over the years, and the generosity of the communities of St-Thomas and Joliette, have so far raised nearly $200,000 for research into Sensorial Neuropathy, all while providing entertainment through the local talent of comedians, musicians, and more.



To purchase tickets for November’s event, please contact Danielle Lepage at 450-756-2915.


Get Ready to Golf for a Great Cause!


For the third year in a row, the Topor Family will be spending the day with friends, supporters, and volunteers on the links of the Hillsdale Golf and Country Club in Mirabel to raise money for The Neuro’s Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Greatest Needs Fund, this September. The MS Greatest Needs Fund helps our top-notch MS Program to provide stellar care to our patients through special equipment purchases and continuous training, and also allows us to invest in promising research projects that will inform future care.

For more information, or to participate in this charity tournament, please contact Jordan Topor at gripnripMS@gmail.com.

Nick Gavrielatos, Neuro MVP

Nick Gavrielatos, former patient and local hockey star, was back at The Neuro at the end of April 2016 to make yet another gift in support of Dr. Kevin Petrecca and the Brain Tumor Program. This time, he encouraged donations by his family and friends on Facebook in order to bring the grand total he raised to $4,188.70! Nick will be pursuing his studies in Greece this coming fall, but we’re sure he’ll stay in touch with us and Dr. Petrecca.  Thank you again, Nick, for your generosity and hard work.


The Rasmussens Visit The Neuro – A Special Homecoming

The Neuro was happy to welcome Dr. Theodore Rasmussen’s daughter and family, for a visit in May 2016. Dr. Rasmussen was the Director of The Neuro from 1960 to 1972. Read more about him, and other notable figures from The Neuro.


Committing to the Future of The Neuro through Planned Giving

Friends of The Neuro, Joan Chippindale, Sherrill Rand Harrison, and Sheila Linden, were honoured at an afternoon tea with McGill principal Suzanne Fortier on May 4, 2016, at The Mount Royal Club. The annual afternoon tea, hosted by the McGill 1821 Society and the Macdonald Legacy Society, recognizes individuals who commit to McGill through planned gifts.




In Focus


Focusing on Nurses – at the Heart of The Neuro

Nurses at the Neuro are on the frontline and are involved in all the critical aspects of health care, including research, administration, education, and clinical care. They are at the centre of improving the health and wellbeing of Neuro patients.


The 2016 Neuroscience Nursing Awards of Excellence Ceremony took place on May 10, 2016, as part of National Nursing Week. It was the perfect opportunity to pause and celebrate the dedication, strength and compassion of nurses at The Neuro.


Learn more about the winners!



World Leader in Neuroinformatics Visits The Neuro

Professor Pedro Valdes-Sosa, General Vice-Director and founder of the Research of the Cuban Neuroscience Center (CNEURO) was in Montreal mid-May 2916 to visit with his collaborators at The Neuro.


Learn more or listen to a podcast of an interview with Professor Pedro Valdes-Sosa.



Congratulations to ...


Dr. Jean-Pierre Farmer, who won the Prix d’excellence 2016 from the Collège des médecins du Québec for his outstanding contributions to neurosurgery. Read more about this great honour.

Dr. Mirko Diksic, who was elected a Corresponding Member of the Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts (HAZU), on May 12, 2016.

Dr. Barbara E. Jones, who was selected to receive a Distinguished Scientist Award from the Canadian Sleep Society (CSS). The Award will be presented at the next CSS congress in Calgary in April 2017.


Dr. Brenda Milner, who received an Honourary Degree from Thompson Rivers University on June 9, 2016. Read about it here.

Dr. Louis Collins, who obtained an NSERC Research Technology and Instrumentation grant for the renewal of his ultra-sound system for image-guided surgery research.


Dr. Richard Hoge, who was granted a Canada Foundation for Innovation’s (CFI) John R. Evans Leaders Fund (JELF) award, to upgrade the main MRI scanner at the McConnell Brain Imaging Centre (BIC).

In Memoriam


Suzanne Corkin, 1937-2016

Suzanne Corkin, whose painstaking work with a famous amnesiac known as H.M., helped clarify the biology of memory and its disorders, died on Tuesday, May 24, 2016, in Danvers, Massachusetts. She was born in Hartford, Connecticut, and received her PhD from McGill University in 1964, under the tutelage of Dr. Brenda Milner.


Read Dr. Corkin’s obituary and learn more about her important contributions to neuroscience, and her connection to The Neuro.


Wendy Blue, 1969-2016

Neuro Librarian, Wendy Blue passed away at her home on June 7 2016, after a long and difficult battle with mental illness. Wendy graduated from McGill University with a Master's degree in Library Science.
She will be greatly missed by her three children, her husband, her parents, her sister and her many relatives, friends and colleagues.
Read Wendy’s obituary.


Faith Dorothy Roswell Feindel, 1920-2016

Faith Dorothy Roswell Feindel died peacefully and surrounded by family in her home on June 16, 2016, at the age of 96. Faith was the wife of the late Dr. William Howard Feindel, and mother of six children. As a nurse at the Neuro, and her support of neurosurgeon Dr, Feindel, she played an integral role in the history of The Neuro.


Learn more about Faith’s life in her obituary.



Back Track


ALS Awareness Month

Since June was ALS month and, The Neuro is recognized as a major Canadian center for ALS research and patient care, The Neuro doubled its efforts to inform the public about amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and encouraged all to support ALS research. 


Read a feature article in The Montreal Gazette about the impact of ALS.


Credit: Studio Photo Cookie

Credit: Studio Photo Cookie


Learn more about ALS and the Neuro.

Stroke Month: Causes and Prevention

June was stroke month, and The Neuro was busy increasing public awareness about the causes of stroke, and how to reduce the risk of stroke.  


Learn more about stroke and The Neuro.




Fast Facts


  • EBS Korean TV toured The Neuro last and their report was broadcast on November 3, 2015. Watch it here (in Korean).
  • The Neuro was granted a large volume of storage space for open imaging initiatives by Compute Canada’a Research Portals and Platforms.
  • Download a free ebook, or order a hard copy book, from world-renowned author John Grisham about the focused ultrasound, “A new revolutionary medical therapy that could one day save countless lives.” Learn more!


Brain Facts


Decisions and the Brain

Credit: Headway, http://publications.mcgill.ca/headway/magazine/decisions-decisions/What prompts us to order a burger and fries instead of a salad? What puts someone at a higher risk of developing a drug addiction or becoming physically violent?  McGill researchers are studying neurobiological processes involved in human behaviour and decision-making to help answer those questions.
Learn more about these fascinating brain facts!

10 Recently-Discovered Brain Facts

Credit: McGill Reporter, http://publications.mcgill.ca/reporter/2016/06/10-new-facts-about-the-brain/2016 has been a remarkable year for neuroscience research at McGill – and it’s only July!

Read a summary about the latest discoveries!





The Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital — The Neuro, is a unique academic medical centre dedicated to neuroscience. Founded in 1934, The Neuro is recognized internationally for integrating research, compassionate patient care and advanced training, all key to advances in science and medicine. The Neuro is a research and teaching institute of McGill University and forms the basis for the Neuroscience Mission of the McGill University Health Centre.  For more information, visit theneuro.ca.


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