Professor, Department of Human Genetics; Department of Medicine; Department of Surgery
Dr. St-Arnaud graduated from Laval University (Quebec City, Canada) with a Ph.D. in Physiology in 1986. Following post-doctoral training in molecular biology at the University of Ottawa (86-88) and at the State University of New York at Stony Brook (88-89), Dr. St-Arnaud joined the Genetics Unit of the Shriners Hospital for Children in Montreal, Canada, in 1989, where he is currently Acting Director of Research and Senior Investigator. Dr. St-Arnaud also holds cross-appointments as a tenured Full Professor of Medicine, Surgery, and Human Genetics at McGill University, where he is also cross-appointed to the Faculty of Dentistry.
We are interested in the control of gene expression in bone cells as well as in vitamin D metabolism. My laboratory uses state-of-the-art techniques in molecular biology and molecular genetics to identify and characterize regulators of gene expression in osteoblasts and to develop animal models of metabolic bone disease. My group has made significant contributions to our understanding of bone cell differentiation and function: we have cloned the 25-hydroxyvitamin D-1-alpha-hydroxylase gene (Cyp27b1), characterized the role of the aNAC transcriptional coregulator molecule in bone, isolated and characterized the Factor Inhibiting ATF4-mediated Transcription, and cloned a novel membrane receptor for 24,25-dihydroxyvitamin D. Our long-term goals include the study of the molecular mechanisms and signal transduction cascades involving the genes that we have cloned, in order to identify ‘druggable’ targets for the treatment of fractures and metabolic bone diseases.