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Guidelines for human genome editing

By Vincent C. Allaire Human genome editing for both research and therapy is progressing, raising ethical questions among scientists around the world.

Published on : 21 Jan 2016

Fight tumors and infections with targeted drugs

By Cynthia Lee Some drug regimens, such as those designed to eliminate tumors, are notorious for nasty side effects. Unwanted symptoms are often the result of medicine going where it’s not needed and harming healthy cells. To minimize this risk, researchers in Quebec have developed nanoparticles that only release a drug when exposed to near-infrared light, which doctors could beam onto a specific site. Their report appears in the Journal of the American Chemical Society.

Published on : 20 Jan 2016

Michael W. Davidson, a Success in Microscopes and Neckwear, Dies at 65

"Mr. Davidson, who died on Dec. 24 at 65, used sophisticated microscopes to create stunning, psychedelic images of crystallized substances like DNA and hormones, and he contributed to Nobel Prize-honored research about the inner workings of cells. His images were on the covers of scientific journals and, as unlikely as it might seem, on neckwear" states the NY Times. Read the full New York Times article here.

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Published on : 20 Jan 2016

Cost burden of Quebec’s carbon market seen as modest

By Chris Chipello The cost burden of Quebec’s carbon-pricing policy, is likely to be modest across income groups and industries, according to a McGill University research team. The policy, which began to be implemented in 2013, provides a model for capping emissions “without undue hardship for the population,” the researchers conclude. If anything, they suggest, the program could be more aggressive in seeking to cut emissions. Their findings are reported in the December issue of Canadian Public Policy.

Published on : 20 Jan 2016

Human sounds convey emotions better than words do

It takes just one-tenth of a second for our brains to begin to recognize emotions conveyed by vocalizations, according to researchers from McGill. It doesn’t matter whether the non-verbal sounds are growls of anger, the laughter of happiness or cries of sadness. More importantly, the researchers have also discovered that we pay more attention when an emotion (such as happiness, sadness or anger) is expressed through vocalizations than we do when the same emotion is expressed in speech.

Published on : 18 Jan 2016

A ‘printing press’ for nanoparticles

Gold nanoparticles have unusual optical, electronic and chemical properties, which scientists are seeking to put to use in a range of new technologies, from nanoelectronics to cancer treatments.

Published on : 07 Jan 2016

Droughts hit cereal crops harder since 1980s

Drought and extreme heat events slashed cereal harvests in recent decades by 9% to 10% on average in affected countries – and the impact of these weather disasters was greatest in the developed nations of North America, Europe and Australasia, according to a new study led by researchers from McGill University and the University of British Columbia.

Published on : 06 Jan 2016

$5M for Malaria, Tuberculosis Drug-discovery Research

University of Toronto and McGill University scientists are leading an international partnership to discover new and improved drug treatments for tuberculosis, malaria and neglected tropical diseases  -- thanks to a contribution from Merck Canada Inc., as well as an additional $5 million supplement to a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The new funding brings the total investment from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to nearly US $12 million since 2012.

Published on : 17 Dec 2015

Divorce: on the decline in sub-Saharan Africa

With education, employment and income levels all rising for women in sub-Saharan Africa, many observers have speculated that divorce rates would follow suit – as they have in much of the developed world.  But a new study by McGill University researchers finds that divorce rates across 20 African countries over the past 20 years have remained stable or declined.

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Published on : 16 Dec 2015

What is your memory style?

Why is it that some people have richly detailed recollection of past experiences (episodic memory), while others tend to remember just the facts without details (semantic memory)? A research team from the Rotman Research Institute at Baycrest Health Sciences has shown for the first time that these different ways of experiencing the past are associated with distinct brain connectivity patterns that may be inherent to the individual and suggest a life-long “memory trait”.   The study was recently published online in the journal Cortex.

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Published on : 15 Dec 2015