Open Science in the Press

​French articles are available here.

The Globe and Mail

The key to finding a cure for COVID-19? Open science

COVID-19 has caused immeasurable suffering to millions of people worldwide. And yet, in all kinds of ways, this pandemic is teaching us valuable lessons, writes Dr. Guy Rouleau, in the Globe and Mail. One of them is that medical science must be open.


Cell-based Assays Keep Growing

Despite a long history, research with cell-based assays is on the rise. NeuroSGC is developing cell-based assays for neurological diseases, such as Parkinson’s disease and ALS,” says Thomas Durcan, group leader of the iPSC platform at the Montreal Neurological Institute at McGill University. “Using the Open Science principles, NeuroSGC will share reagents, assays, and results with the research community, in order to spark further discovery and accelerate new drug discovery programs.”

Government of Canada

My take on Open Science

Canada’s Chief Science Advisor discusses the impact of openingup government science to the public. Open Science is more than making scientific products (data, research, technical reports and publications) available; it is a way of thinking about and doing science. Open Science is about transparency, sharing and collaboration. This means that new structures, incentives, and metrics need to be put in place to enable researchers to participate and to evaluate the effectiveness ‎of their work.

CTV Montreal 

Neuroscience funding to provide common platform for Canadian researchers

To improve access to critical data, and to continue its policy of being a leader in open science, The Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital (The Neuro) of McGill University has joined The Canadian Open Neuroscience Platform (CONP), a new data sharing partnership that will break down the barriers to collaboration, facilitating the distribution of data across the Canadian neuroscience community and beyond.

Frontiers in Neuroscience

Open Science Meets Stem Cells: A New Drug Discovery Approach for Neurodegenerative Disorders

With the potential to generate any human cell type, we can now generate human neurons and develop “first-of-their-kind” disease-relevant assays for small molecule screening. Now that the tools are in place, it is imperative that we accelerate discoveries from the bench to the clinic. Using traditional closed-door research systems raises barriers to discovery, by restricting access to cells, data and other research findings. Thus, a new strategy is required, and The Neuro and its partners are piloting an “Open Science” model.

ALS News Today


Takeda and Montreal Neurological Institute Team Up to Research New ALS Therapies

Takeda Canada and The Neuro are teaming up to conduct joint research aimed at developing new therapies for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The collaborative effort includes developing and examining multiple cell assays from ALS patients over the next three years, from 2017 to 2020, to advance ALS therapy discovery.

F1000 Blog

MNI Open Research: bringing a new level of transparency to neurological research

Next week will mark one year since the creation of the Tanenbaum Open Science Institute, crystalizing The Neuro’s transformation into the world’s first fully open science institute; an endeavour made possible thanks to a generous donation from the Lawrence and Judith Tanenbaum Family Foundation. During this time, we have worked hard in a number of areas; building an open repository of patient samples, planning the necessary IT infrastructure to handle large scale data sharing, forging unique and promising open drug discovery projects with partners in industry and hiring a number of researchers with impeccable open science credentials.


Point of View: Motivating participation in open science by examining researcher incentives

Support for open science is growing, but motivating researchers to participate in open science can be challenging. This in-depth qualitative study draws on interviews with researchers and staff at the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital during the development of its open science policy. Using thematic content analysis, we explore attitudes toward open science, the motivations and disincentives to participate, the role of patients, and attitudes to the eschewal of intellectual property rights. To be successful, an open science policy must clearly lay out expectations, boundaries and mechanisms by which researchers can engage, and must be shaped to explicitly support their values and those of key partners, including patients, research participants and industry collaborators. 

The Scientist Magazine

Opinion: Share Your Data 

An analysis of a collection of open-access datasets to quantify their benefit to the scientific community. Those who share their data benefit from the crowdsourced scrutiny, analyses, and interpretations of the data by many investigators across many disciplines; more eyes on the data can lead to better and broader insights. In addition, science itself benefits when combining shared datasets increases statistical power, and therefore reproducibility, and trustworthiness of scientific results. Institutions such as the Allen Institute, The Neuro, and Child Mind Institute are leading the way by making open science a defining principle of their operation.

Global Montreal

Montreal Neuro at centre of ‘open science’ movement

Montreal’s world-famous brain research centre is in the middle of conducting an experiment on what could be its most ambitious subject: itself. Since 2016, The Neuro has been transforming into what is touted as the first research centre of its kind in the world dedicated to the principles of open science.

The Loop

A better way to do science (Video)

Dr. Guy Rouleau of The Neuro discusses ‘open science’ and intellectual property. 


Onward to Open Science

The Neuro Open Research will allow Neuro researchers to publish research outputs within days of submission. Through this platform, invited peer-review will take place on an open basis, ensuring transparency. All data involved in studies will be published, including null results, so that researchers from other institutions can avoid wasting time on experiments that have already proven fruitless.

CTV Montreal

Montreal's Neuro and AI community at heart of world 'open science' movement

Montreal’s world-famous brain research centre is in the middle of conducting an experiment on what could be its most ambitious subject: itself. Since 2016, The Neuro has been transforming into what is touted as the first research centre of its kind in the world dedicated to the principles of open science. Along with the city’s artificial intelligence community, The Neuro is helping to make Montreal a world leader in the international push toward democratizing scientific research.

Times Higher Education

Jisc Futures, Research in the Age of Open Science 

"We are an active member of the European Open Science Cloud initiative, with British organisations among those shaping and driving the creation of a digital research environment for the 21st century, and we are learning from innovations abroad such as experiments at the Montreal Neurological Institute (MNI) at McGill University in Canada.”


Big pharma buys into crowdsourcing for drug discovery

Although the mechanism behind the formation of Huntington’s disease is relatively simple, creating suitable drugs for it is another story. Drug design’s high difficulty level is one main factor slowing down the process, but it seems like data secrecy is an even bigger one. Structural Genomics Consortium is a non-profit created to address the issue by adopting a strategy of extreme openness and data sharing between the diverse partners, including pharmaceuticals companies and universities. Rachel Harding actively participated to this initiative by making available, before it is even published, her data that will help map out the Huntingon protein. 

McGill Reporter

Rachel Harding on demolishing barriers to medical breakthrough

An interview of Rachel Harding, a postdoctoral fellow at the Structural Genomics Consortium (SGC), who uses her website Lab Scribles to release online and in real time her research on Huntington’s disease. She recently gave a seminar about Lab Scribbles at The Neuro, “where open science has been adopted at the institutional level”.

Policy Magazine

The Innovative University: Open, Connected and Purposeful

The complexity of the brain has made  developing effective treatments for neurological conditions frustratingly slow. The Director of The Neuro, Guy Rouleau, believes that “by sharing data quickly, we’ll be able to accelerate the discovery of mechanisms and eventually new medicines.” 

Centre for International Governance Innovation

After Failing to Commercialize, Universities Learn to Set Ideas Free

McGill University has recently embarked on an open science initiative in its neurological institute. This initiative is premised on the open sharing of research data and materials so that they can move freely between researchers in all disciplines with the end goal of spurring innovation. This approach is considered to have great impact within and outside of academia. From an industry perspective, the research can be more easily accessed and can stimulate the creation of new products and solutions that can be commercialized. 

The Guardian

Why open source pharma is the path to both new and cheaper medicines

The Montreal Neuro Institute recently pledged not to patent discoveries for five years and received a $20m investment to enact this vision. The Tata Trusts recently invested $3m in a foundation to pursue open source pharma in India. We need more of this if we are to execute major projects and learn from them. There are no reasons why open source approaches would not work if we have the courage of our convictions and we are emboldened by precedent.

University Affairs- Affaires universitaires

McGill Institute Takes Open Science To A New Level

All research findings at The Neuro are being shared publicly to accelerate scientific discovery. As director of McGill’s University’s Montreal Neurological Institute, Guy Rouleau is especially sensitive to this dilemma. During his extensive career in neuroscience, he has seen few breakthroughs to match the life-saving and life-extending treatments that have emerged in other areas such as cancer, heart disease or stroke. “We have had no treatments that affect the course of any single common neurodegenerative brain disease over the past 30 years,” he says. “The reason is that we don’t understand how the brain works. We have to do a much better job.”

Impress Magazines

Opening the Door to Open Science

On December 16, 2016, the Tanenbaum family announced a $20M donation to the MNI while establishing the Tanenbaum Open Science Institute which “aims to propel the discovery and application of therapies for neurological disorders”. It highlights a transition to Open Science model which The Neuro has undertaken by exhcnaing “individualized discoveries for knowledge hubs” and “ layering innovation among researchers, datasets and partners”. The Neuro has committed to five main principles outlined in the press release.


New partnership to accelerate development of treatments for neurological diseases

The NeuroCDRD is a new partnership to advance therapeutics for debilitating diseases like ALS and Parkinson’s. The initiative is led by the Centre for Drug Research and Development, the Montreal Neurological Institute, and Merck. "The burden of neurological diseases and injuries on society is growing each year, and as a physician I see the impact on patients and families every day. At The Neuro, our mission is to drive forward innovation, discovery and advance patient care. We are grateful to CDRD and Merck for developing this partnership and sharing this goal with us," said Dr. Guy Rouleau, Director of the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital.

Biomed Central

Open Science at an institutional level: an interview with Guy Rouleau

The director of the Montreal Neurological Institute (The Neuro), Guy Rouleau, discusses the recent announcement that The Neuro will be completely committed to open science.

The Varsity

Open science may open doors for Canadian research

With the launch of the Tanenbaum Open Science Institute, scientists ponder the functionality of open science in scientific innovation and providing care for patients. Read more. 

CTV News Montreal 

A better way to do science 

Dr. Guy Rouleau, director of The Neuro,  discusses the need for a cultural shift in science regarding how people think about intellectual property. This shift towards open science will increase transparency between researchers and increase access to research around the world.  Read more 

The Globe and Mail 

To spark medical innovation, Canada should embrace Open Science

Medical innovation requires exploring new ideas. In this, Canadian universities and hospitals should experiment with open science. Open science makes research readily available around the globe and has the potential to bring large economic benefits to the areas that adopt it. Read more 

The McGill Tribune 

$20 million donated to the Montreal Neurological Institute

With this donation, the Tanenbaum Open Science Institute was launched as the first academic open science institution in the world. This initiative aligns with a motion passed by the Student's Society of McGill University regarding global access to medicines. Read more 

Boing Boing 

McGill Neurology will no longer patent researchers' findings, instead everything will be open access

With the launch of the Tannenbaum Open Science Institute, The Neuro is embarking on new open science practice of opening access to all research and data findings and putting an end to the practice of patenting the university's findings. It hopes to spread this practice to other universities and research centers. Read more

The Guardian 

Could the best way to make money from science be to give it away for free?

An experimentation in open science, the launch of The Neuro's Tanenbaum Open Science Institute is a first to make its research available to other researchers. In doing so, it hopes to make further advancements in science, as there is some agreement that what is being done now is not working. Read more 

CBC News 

Montreal Neurological Institute receives $20M for open science research centre

The concept of open science is modeled after open source software, and keeps research patent-free and allows it to be used freely by other researchers. The opening of The Neuro's Tanenbaum Open Science Institute allows it to be the first of it kind in the field of science. Read more 

The Globe and Mail 

In Montreal, a wee opening in the closed world of science research

The launch of The Neuro's Tanenbaum Open Science Institute, makes it a first of its kind to fully embrace open science. This will allow for The Neuro's research to be readily available to other researchers around the world. Read more 

McGill News 

A game changer for open science

With a generous donation of $20 million from Larry and Judy Tanenbaum family, the new Tanenbaum Open Science Institute was launched to allow for research findings and associated data to be made widely available. This institute will be a first of its kind to make such a commitment to open science. Read more 


Montreal institute going ‘open’ to accelerate science

An interview with Guy Rouleau, Lesley Fellows, and Brian Nosek, a psychologist and director of the Center for Open Science at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville. Rouleau outlines the reasons for going Open Science, and the support from The Neuro faculty. Read more

McGill News Alumni Magazine

A Bold Experiment in Open Science

More than 80 years ago, when it first opened its doors, the Montreal Neurological Institute offered up a bold vision for the future of neuroscience. Clinicians treating patients and researchers examining different neurological disorders and diseases began collaborating more closely than ever before. Read more

Research Data Canada

Open Science, Open Data: Lessons from the Montreal Neurological Institute

Finally, for Research Data Canada, The Neuro, and the implemented systems and best practices highlight what a research organization can do when it embraces a deliberate and sustainable approach to research data management. The Neuro has taken a leadership role in the Open Data/Open Science community by announcing a 5-year period where they will abide by an Open approach and share all their research outputs. When combined with the recent announcement of an $84 million CFREF grant for The Neuro, the next 5 years should indeed prove interesting. Read more

Biomed Central

Publishing better science through better data

The talk that perhaps generated the most interest was from Guy Rouleau, describing the efforts of the Montreal Neurological Institute at McGill University to become the first large department to become completely open (as far as he is aware). This entails all patients being asked to sign on admission consent forms for data release, a biobank for samples available to researchers on request, and the department not pursuing intellectual property rights on any discoveries made. This move was voted for unanimously by the faculty, and will be monitored for effectiveness as it goes along. Read more

Globe and Mail

In the Trump era, Canada can be a beacon for innovators

The good news is that Canadian institutions are willing to experiment,” he writes. “McGill’s Montreal Neurological Institute took a leap forward by throwing aside the losing proposition that universities need to spend on patents that go nowhere and that slow down or impede partnerships. What excites me most about this is that we expect research in neuroscience to generate innovation in another industry, information technology, where the analytic and visualization software will be developed. Read more

The Neuro logo McGill logoMcGill University Health Centre logoKillam Laureates


The Neuro (Montreal Neurological Institute-Hospital) is a McGill research and teaching institute; delivering high-quality patient care, as part of the Neuroscience Mission of the McGill University Health Centre. We are proud to be a Killam Institution, supported by the Killam Trusts.




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