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Centre de recherche
Monday, June 29 2009
Press release

Sainte-Justine is investing in a new generation of high-caliber scientists: The Sainte-Justine UHC Foundation awards three Postdoctoral Research Scholarships to three new investigators

Montreal, June 29, 2009 - Through a competition launched in November 2008, three young investigators have been awarded a Postdoctoral Research Scholarship by the Sainte-Justine University Hospital Center (UHC) Foundation totaling almost half a million dollars.

In this international competition candidates from sixteen (16) countries were narrowed down to twelve (12) finalists.

The Sainte-Justine UHC Foundation created this competition to assist Sainte-Justine University Hospital Research Center in recruiting outstanding candidates who will contribute toward developing the next generation of high-caliber scientists and the continued and sustained provision of excellent healthcare to mothers and children over the years to come.

The 2009-2010 award winners are: Dr. Olivier Collignon (Belgium), Dr. Bidisha Chattopadhyaya (India) and Dr. Silvia Selleri (Italy).

In the field of neuroscience, Olivier Collignon intends to focus on the study of the development of multisensory integration in both normal and autistic children.

Bidisha Chattopadhyaya is interested in the study of GABAergic neuronal mechanisms in various neurodevelopmental disorders such as epilepsy and schizophrenia.

Silvia Selleri specializes in the field of oncology, gene therapy and immunopathology. Her research interests deal with immune disorders and hematopoietic stem cell transplantation.

Choosing Excellence

The candidates, supported by twenty-three (23) of the Research Center’s investigators, were evaluated by fourteen (14) members of the Center’s Academic Affairs Committee. The highlight of the contest was the oral presentation made by each of the 12 finalists on June 19 before the six (6) members of the selection committee.

According to the Co-Chair of the jury and the Vice-Rector — Research of the Université de Montréal, Dr Joseph Hubert “The Sainte-Justine UHC Foundation and the Sainte-Justine University Hospital Research Center’s initiative aimed at encouraging a new generation of high-caliber scientists is exemplary. The quality of the candidates who applied in areas highly important for mother and child health is remarkable. This surely reflects the strength and resources of the research teams working at Sainte-Justine. We must also thank the Foundation for its support which enabled to recruit the best talent.”

“Judging by the exceptional quality of the work that was presented, we are confident that these new recruits will be up to the task. They will strengthen the teams of researchers already in place by developing other equally innovative projects aimed at preventing and healing childhood diseases. It is through such projects that we will succeed in improving the quality of life of mothers and children,” said Ms. Anièle Lecoq, President and Executive Director of the Sainte-Justine UHC Foundation.

Dr. Guy Rouleau, Director of the Sainte-Justine University Hospital Research Center, pointed out that “a spirit of openness onto the world that favors international collaborations, adds to the expertise of our researchers and allows us to undertake major projects is at the center of our concerns for the development of the Center. This competition not only helps to strengthen our academic life and make it healthier, but it also provides us with the means to expand our teams with very promising young recruits.”

The jury was made up of Drs. Joseph Hubert, Vice-Rector — Research, Université de Montréal, Claude Roy, investigator at the Sainte-Justine University Hospital Research Center, Luc Valiquette, Director of the Université de Montréal’s Surgery Department, Josette Noël, Assistant to the Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies, Faculty of Medicine, Université of Montréal, and Marielle Ledoux, Director of the Department of Nutrition, Université of Montréal as well as Ms. Isabelle Péan, Major Gifts and Strategic Research Director at the Sainte-Justine UHC Foundation. Before they began deliberating, the members of the jury readily acknowledged the exceptional quality of the work that was presented.

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For information

Nicole Saint-Pierre
Research Center
CHU Sainte-Justine
514 345-4931 Ext. 2555

Diane Fabi
Director of Communications
Sainte-Justine UHC Foundation
514 345-4710


About the Sainte-Justine UHC Foundation
The mission of the Sainte-Justine UHC Foundation is to mobilize the community and support CHU Sainte-Justine in its mission of excellence to offer the children of today and tomorrow one of the best levels of health in the world.

About the Sainte-Justine University Hospital Research Center
The second most important institution of its kind in Canada, the CHU Sainte-Justine Research Center is recognized around the world for the innovative work it does in the most promising areas of research.

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