Graduate Profiles

Alex Therien, BSc’94 PhD’99
Research Fellow, Merck Frosst

“I came to McGill because of the quality of the science being done here. The research was far-reaching and very relevant to medical research,” recalls Alex Therien, whose doctoral research “tissue-specific regulation of the sodium-potassium-ATPase” with Professor Rhoda Blostein was based primarily at the Montreal General Hospital.

"I learned everything I know about research during those years, working with some very impressive scientists as well as a close knit group of grad students.”

After completing a post-doctorate at the University of Toronto, Therien joined Merck Frosst as a Senior Research Biologist in 2002. He is now a Research Fellow as well as an adjunct professor in the Department of Biochemistry.

“Today I lead a group of scientists, working to drive the development of antimicrobial drugs. The best part of my job with Merck Frosst is that we are directly contributing to human health.”

Josée Dostie, PhD’95
Assistant professor, McGill Dept of Biochemistry

“I was drawn to McGill by the excellence in research – everybody talked about the Biochemistry department and its researchers,” says Josée Dostie, who came to McGill to work with Nahum Sonnenberg.

“It was a really vibrant environment,”she says. “My fondest memories were definitely the interactions with other students. We almost lived in the lab, and your friends were the people working with you in the department. It was very collegial, and there were so many ambitious people. All my fellow students were thinkers and doers.”

Dostie continued post-doctoral work in the United States, but returned to McGill to join the Department of Biochemistry as an Assistant Professor. “One of the things that drew me back is that the professors here are really interested in science. They want to talk about science, but there are no ego clashes. The environment is so rich, and people are deeply involved in their work,” she says.

“As a professor who specializes in understanding the role of 3-D genome organization in the expression of genes, I love having a lab with students, where I can interact with them and see them learn and surpass me. The best part of the job is teaching students how to carry out really good research – that is very rewarding and fulfilling.”