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Gabriel Gagnon-Turcotte wins the Mitacs 2015 prize for exceptional innovation for the development of a wireless system to study the brain

Gabriel Gagnon-Turcotte, en compagnie du professeur Benoît Gosselin - Crédit photo Marc Robitaille

Congratulations to Gabriel Gagnon-Turcotte, Masters student in the laboratory of professor Benoît Gosselin from the Department of electrical engineering and computer engineering, for winning the Mitacs 2015 prize for exceptional innovation, in the Master's student category.  The prize was given for the development of an optogenetic wireless system to stimulate a specific region of the brain of an animal, expressing a light-sensitive protein, and to record in real-time the resulting response.  

"We are working with the team of Yves De Koninck, from the Faculty of Medicine and the Institut universitaire en santé mentale de Québec. Our optogenetics system could help researchers of the institute to further their understanding of brain function, and to better treat diseases that alter its functionning. " says Benoît Gosselin.

Gabriel Gagnon-Turcotte will continue the optimisation of this innovative system:

« I finished my Master's degree this Fall, and i am continuing this project for my PhD.  I should be able to install this system on a microchip, which would reduce the weight of the whole system to about 200 miligrams. » 

Learn more about this project and the prize in  Le Fil, le magazine universitaire de l'Université Laval: Étudier le cerveau en mode Bluetooth (in French only).