The focus of the platform is to generate genetic tools for optical imaging and photointervention. These tools typically involve DNA encoding proteins of interest that can be delivered to, and expressed in, cultured cells, tissue slices or live animals. The optical tools can also be used in the making of genetically modified mice. The platform provides expertise, consulting and services in the following areas: viral vectors, DNA constructs, conditionally expressed markers, transgenic animals, DNA encoded fluorescent tools for monitoring neural activity, ion and molecular interaction sensing, light-activation/inhibition of neurons, cellular and subcellular tracking, and photocleavage of signaling complexes.
Director : Jeffrey Mogil
Literature presents several animal models, each aiming at mimicking different forms of pathology in humans. The availability of this growing array of models provides an unprecedented opportunity to understand the factors that underlie the heterogeneity of chronic pain syndromes in humans by accelerating translation of research findings. This platform facilitates methodological standardization, offers specialized training opportunities for student, proposes consulting for grant writing and disposes of highly qualified personal to conduct experiments.
QPRN researchers are using spinal and brain imaging to study how the brain processes pain. Within our platform, four imaging facilities equipped with magnetic resonance imaging systems are available to QPRN researchers. Positron emission tomography systems and a magnetoencephalography unit are also available. In addition to access to facilities, the platform offers an advisory service for the planning of imaging components of research projects.
Director : Luda Diatchenko
Persistent pain is a classic example of gene-environment interaction. The main goal of the
platform is to provide investigators with the knowledge and technical support to conduct genetic and genomic analyses on human or animal biological samples. The platform provides expertise and services in the following areas: identification of critical elements of human genetic variability contributing to pain sensitivity and pathophysiological pain states, identification of the molecular hierarchy of functional single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and SNP dependent regulation of gene expression underlying molecular pain signaling.
Director : Manon Choinière
Description and optimization of health trajectories are key to treating chronic pain patients more effectively. To support the research, the platform will provide access and experience in data management and patient recruitment, multi-center ethics submissions and to the Quebec Pain Registry (QPR). The QPR is an administrative and research database which provides standardized data on a large cohort of chronic pain patients who are described using a set of common demographic and clinical measures based on uniform and validated measurement tools.