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Reducing effects of traumatic events

Reducing fear and stress following a traumatic event could be as simple as providing a protein synthesis blocker to the brain, report a team of researchers from McLean Hospital, Harvard Medical School, McGill University, and Massachusetts General Hospital in a paper published in the March 4 issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Mon, 2013-03-04 15:07

“This is an important basic neuroscience finding that has the potential to have clinical implications for the way individuals with posttraumatic stress disorder are treated,” said Vadim Bolshakov, PhD, director of the Cellular Neurobiology Laboratory at McLean Hospital.  “We used a well-known behavioral paradigm that we think models PTSD, fear conditioning, to explore how fearful memories are formed. In our study, the level of fear exhibited by experimental subjects was significantly reduced as a result of decreased signal transfer between cells in the amygdala, a key brain region in fear-related behaviors.”

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Contact: Cynthia Lee
Organization: Media Relations, McGill University
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Office Phone: 514-398-6754
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Meetings with Books: Raymond Klibansky

Fri, 2013-03-01 11:48

Meetings with Books: Raymond Klibansky, Special Collections and the Library in the 21st Century is a one-day symposium hosted by the McGill University Library taking place on March 20, 2013 at the Faculty Club Ballroom, 3450 McTavish. The event will bring together scholars and librarians to discuss the full and complex potential of special collections and rare books. The event includes a keynote lecture on curiosity by author Alberto Manguel.

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Contact: Cynthia Lee
Organization: Media Relations, McGill University
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Office Phone: 514-398-6754
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Democracy, Human Rights and the Fragility of Freedom

International human rights experts convene at Echenberg Family Global Conference to address democratic citizenship and the protection of fundamental rights and freedoms on a global scale.
Fri, 2013-03-01 10:46

How do we bridge the gap between the theory of human rights and the complex social, political and economic realities of a turbulent and interconnected world?

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Contact: Cynthia Lee
Organization: Media Relations, McGill University
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Office Phone: 514-398-6754
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Chronic pain alters DNA marking in the brain

Pioneering study reveals association of chronic pain and broad epigenetic changes.
Thu, 2013-02-14 10:25
Injuries that result in chronic pain, such as limb injuries, and those unrelated to the brain are associated with epigenetic changes in the brain which persist months after the injury, according to researchers at McGill University. Epigenetics explores how the environment – including diet, exposure to contaminants and social conditions such as poverty – can have a long-term impact on the activity of our genes.

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Contact: Cynthia Lee
Organization: Media Relations, McGill University
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Office Phone: 514-398-6754
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Few women, visible minorities among top decision makers

One in three Montreal companies still have no women in senior management roles
Fri, 2013-02-08 10:56

While women have gained ground, accounting for 31.2% of senior leadership roles in Montreal, visible minorities remain more markedly underrepresented in these ranks. In spite of accounting for 22.5% of the population, only 5.9% of senior leaders were visible minorities according to a study led by researchers from McGill University’s Desautels Faculty of Management and Ryerson University’s Diversity Institute.  

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Contact: Chris Chipello
Organization: Media Relations, McGill University
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Office Phone: 514-398-4201
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Making mobile robots work together

New NSERC Canadian Field Robotics Network will offer key to future environmental, hydroelectric, and resource identification and monitoring.
Fri, 2013-02-08 10:30

The danger that icebergs represent to both shipping and to the underwater cables that traverse the ocean floors is very real. It’s tricky for satellites to identify icebergs, and almost impossible to accurately predict the level of risk they present. Drifting clouds can make it difficult to see the movements of sea ice as well as the underwater shape of the icebergs that determines their movement and whether they are a threat. This is why ships moving off Newfoundland’s Grand Banks and the coast of Labrador are asked to report their position and ice observation to Ice St. John’s every six hours. 

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Contact: Katherine Gombay
Organization: Media Relations, McGill University
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Office Phone: 514-398-2189
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Heart valve disease linked to unusual cholesterol

Researchers have discovered a gene associated with a form of cholesterol that increases the risk of developing aortic stenosis, the most common form of heart valve disease, by more than half. This international study, involving the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre (RI-MUHC), is the first of its kind to uncover a genetic link with aortic valve disease – a condition that affects more than 5 million people in North America.
Thu, 2013-02-07 11:15

The results of the study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, point to the first known cause of aortic stenosis and to a potential treatment to prevent this disease. “We found that an unusual type of cholesterol called Lipoprotein (a) or Lp(a) – that is not normally screened for in current clinical practice – appears to be a cause of aortic valve disease,” says Dr. George Thanassoulis, one of the co-lead authors of the study, who is also director of preventive and genomic cardiology at the MUHC and an Assistant Professor in Medicine at McGill University. “High levels of this type of cholesterol are predicted primarily by an individual’s genetic make-up with only modest influence from lifestyle or other factors.” 

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Contact: Julie Robert
Organization: Communications – Research, Public Affairs & Strategic Planning, McGill University Health Centre
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Office Phone: 514-934-1934 (ext. 71381)
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Ryan Case: The law alone can't combat domestic violence

Tue, 2013-01-22 10:31

(Commentary from McGill law professor Angela Campbell)

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Unleash the rhetoric, Mr. President. America needs it

Mon, 2013-01-21 15:16

(Commentary by History professor Gil Troy): As Barack Obama drafts his second inaugural speech, he should remember the speeches that made him president. He should ponder the vision of multicultural nationalism in his 2004 Democratic Convention keynote. He should revive the controlled but righteous indignation in his 2008 address on race relations that defused the Reverend Jeremiah Wright controversy. And he should tap into the lyrical patriotism that made his first victory speech soar.

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The long, cold slog

Mon, 2013-01-21 15:14

(Michael Becker, a doctoral student at McGill University, was a scientific diver on an expedition to Lake Untersee, Antarctica - this the third of 6 blog posts): There are no helicopters on this end of the continent. For someone as unenthusiastic about walking as I am, this news comes as a definitive blow to my goal of doing as little exercise as possible. But even an ultramarathoner would be chilled by the prospect of an 80-mile journey over treacherous glacial crevasses with several tons of gear.

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