Gustavo Zamberlam

Gustavo Zamberlam, DMV, MSc, PhD

16 Oct 2023

Address

Research interests

  • Ovarian physiology
  • Physiology of the pituitary gland: regulation of gonadotropins synthesis
  • Disorders of the pituitary gland and gonads

Our main research interest is the study of ovarian physiology and dysfunction; particularly the regulation of ovarian follicle development and ovulation in bovine and rodents. The first, an important agricultural species, and the second, a useful animal model for research in biology of reproduction. We have used in vitro and in vivo approaches to demonstrate novel roles of intracrine factors like the free radical gas nitric oxide, FGFs and the secreted glycoproteins WNTs and SFRPs in mammalian ovarian granulosa cells.

We are currently focusing our studies on the physiopathological roles of Hippo signaling in bovine ovarian follicle cells. We have also expanded our studies to the level of the pituitary gland. In a current research project with mice, we are using functional genomics approaches to determine how the physiological roles of Hippo pathway regulate gonadotropin synthesis and how the disturbance of this pathway can alter pituitary function.

Members of the laboratory

Natalia Jakuc
PhD student
natalia.jakuc@umontreal.ca

Leonardo Guedes De Andrade, MSc
PhD student
leonardo.guedes.de.andrade@umontreal.ca

Publications

Julie BrindAmour

Julie Brind’Amour, PhD

16 Oct 2023

Research interests

Affiliations

Expertises

Research interest

  • Developmental epigenetics
  • Oogenesis
  • Inter-generational epigenetic inheritance

My lab uses a combination of molecular biology, genomic sequencing and bioinformatics analysis tools to answer questions related to the transition from the maternal epigenome to that of the embryo.

My research interests focus on the process of epigenetic reprogramming in germ cells and early embryos in mammals. In particular, I am interested in the effect of different interventions or mutations on the establishment of the maternal epigenome, as well as their resulting effects on transcriptional control in the embryo.

Members of the laboratory

Alyson Daigneault, BSc
MSc student
alyson.daigneault@umontreal.ca

Camille Souchet, MSc
PhD student
camille.souchet@umontreal.ca

Laureline Charrier, MSc
PhD student (co-supervision)
laureline.charrier@umontreal.ca

Samuel Gusscott, PhD
Resaerch assistant
samuel.gusscott@umontreal.ca

Publications

Julie Brind’Amour, PhD

6 Dec 2022

Research interests

Affiliations

Expertises

Julie Brind’Amour’s laboratory uses a combination of molecular biology tools, genomic sequencing and bioinformatics analyses to answer questions related to the transition from the maternal to the embryonic epigenome. Her research interests focus on the process of epigenetic reprogramming in mammalian germ cells and early embryo. In particular, she is interested in the effect of different interventions or mutations on the establishment of the maternal epigenome, as well as their secondary effects on transcriptional control in the embryo.

Members of the laboratory

Alyson Daigneault
MSc student
alyson.daigneault@umontreal.ca

Camille Souchet
PhD student
camille.souchet@umontreal.ca

Samuel Gusscott, PhD
Resaerch assistant
samuel.gusscott@umontreal.ca

Publications

Kalidou Ndiaye, PhD

6 Dec 2022

Address

Research interests

  • Ovarian function
  • Reproductive immunolgy
  • Follicular development

The primary field of research in the lab is directed toward the cellular and molecular mechanisms in reproduction with a focus on follicular development in bovine species. A secondary focus is on the reproductive immunology and the effects of immune cells on the ovarian function. We are approaching these projects by using a host of molecular technologies including yeast two-hybrid screening, RNA interference, plasmid-mediated protein over-expression and promoter-reporter assays to characterize the expression and study the functions of target genes in ovarian follicles and immune cells.

These approaches allow us to study the expression and function of genes that could influence follicular development and the quality of oocyte and impact bovine fertility. Our previous studies have demonstrated the induction of specific genes expression in the ovarian follicle during ovulation, some of which are involved in inflammatory processes. Other studies from our laboratory have also shown that some genes are present in growing dominant follicles and are repressed by the luteinizing hormone (LH). Our ongoing projects aim to elucidate the functions and mechanisms of action of some of these genes in granulosa cells of ovarian follicles using pharmacological inhibitors, the CRISPR-Cas9 technology as well as signal transduction analyses. We also study the mode of action of proteins encoded by these genes by defining their partners using the yeast two-hybrid approach and performing in vitro analyses.

Members of the laboratory

Marianne Descarreaux
MSc student
Marianne.descarreaux@umontreal.ca

Daniela Naranjo
MSc student
dcng1994@gmail.com

Maryam Pashaei
MSc student
maryam.pashaei@umontreal.ca

Amir Zareifard
MSc student
Amir.zareifard@umontreal.ca

Aly Warma, MSc
PhD student
Aly.warma@umontreal.ca

Publications

Guillaume St-Jean, DVM, PhD, DACVP

26 Jan 2021

Address

Research interests

  • Development and physiology of the uterus
  • Pathogenesis of uterine diseases
  • Mechanisms of intracellular signaling pathways

Our primary field of interest is the roles played by signaling pathways in the development and function of the uterus and pathogenesis of uterine diseases in human and animals. The uterus is a dynamic organ. Numerous signaling pathways expressed during embryogenesis and adult life carefully coordinate its development and function. TGF-b, WNT and Hippo are counted amongst these pathways. They also contribute to the development of numerous diseases. Using functional genomics and comparative pathology approaches, we study the roles of some of these pathways in the pathogenesis of uterine diseases. Our current research study the roles of Hippo signaling in the uterine function and development of endometritis in cows. We are also interested in the development of uterine fibrosis and plan to study the roles of these signaling pathways in its development, which could lead to the identification of novel therapeutic targets.

Members of the laboratory

Etienne Blais, DVM, IPSAV
MSc student
etienne.blais.1@umontreal.ca

Publications

Sylvie Breton

Sylvie Breton, PhD

19 Aug 2020

Address

Research interests

  • Post-testicular regulation of male reproduction
  • Intercellular communication networks for the establishment of an optimal luminal environment for sperm maturation, protection and storage in the epididymis
  • Epithelial dynamics and mucosal immunity

Male infertility often results from the inability of spermatozoa to reach and fertilize an oocyte. These properties are acquired by the sperm cells as they transit through the epididymal tubule. However, this small organ is understudied and as such male infertility often remains unexplained.

The different epithelial cell types (clear, principal and basal cells) that line the lumen of the epididymis work in a concerted manner to maintain a unique acidic environment that contributes to the maturation and storage of spermatozoa in a dormant state. Our study aims at decoding this complex intercellular communication network.

Moreover, we recently uncovered unexpected roles for proton secreting clear cells in sperm maturation and immune defense. We showed that clear cells express mRNA transcripts and proteins that are acquired by the maturing sperm, and they establish close interactions with luminal spermatozoa via newly described “nanotubes”. Another important aspect of epithelial cell function is related to the fact that they constitute the first line of defense against infections. In the epididymis, a balance between tolerance to immunogenic spermatozoa and immune activation against pathogens must be maintained. In mechanistic studies, we found that clear cells respond to the presence of bacterial antigens in vivo by expressing chemokines, which induce the recruitment of macrophages into the epididymis. These recent findings thus revealed the participation of clear cells as sensors and mediators of inflammation. Characterizing these novel properties is another active research theme in our lab.

We use a multidisciplinary approach including high-resolution laser scanning confocal immunofluorescence microscopy, 3D reconstruction of single cells, intravital multiphoton microscopy, luminal perfusion of the epididymis in vivo, and monitoring of live cells in vivo and in vitro.

Members of the laboratory

Kéliane Brochu
MSc student

Larissa Berloffa Belardin, PhD
Postdoctoral fellow

Christine Légaré, MSc
Research assistant

Publications

Kalidou Ndiaye, PhD

26 Jun 2018

Address

Research interests

  • Ovarian function
  • Reproductive immunolgy
  • Follicular development

The primary field of research in the lab is directed toward the cellular and molecular mechanisms in reproduction with a focus on follicular development in bovine species. A secondary focus is on the reproductive immunology and the effects of immune cells on the ovarian function. We are approaching these projects by using a host of molecular technologies including yeast two-hybrid screening, RNA interference, plasmid-mediated protein over-expression and promoter-reporter assays to characterize the expression and study the functions of target genes in ovarian follicles and immune cells.

These approaches allow us to study the expression and function of genes that could influence follicular development and the quality of oocyte and impact bovine fertility. Our previous studies have demonstrated the induction of specific genes expression in the ovarian follicle during ovulation, some of which are involved in inflammatory processes. Other studies from our laboratory have also shown that some genes are present in growing dominant follicles and are repressed by the luteinizing hormone (LH). Our ongoing projects aim to elucidate the functions and mechanisms of action of some of these genes in granulosa cells of ovarian follicles using pharmacological inhibitors, the CRISPR-Cas9 technology as well as signal transduction analyses. We also study the mode of action of proteins encoded by these genes by defining their partners using the yeast two-hybrid approach and performing in vitro analyses.

Members of the laboratory

Marianne Descarreaux
MSc student
Marianne.descarreaux@umontreal.ca

Daniela Naranjo
MSc student
dcng1994@gmail.com

Maryam Pashaei
MSc student
maryam.pashaei@umontreal.ca

Amir Zareifard
MSc student
Amir.zareifard@umontreal.ca

Aly Warma, MSc
PhD student
Aly.warma@umontreal.ca

Publications

Clémence Belleannée, PhD

13 Dec 2017

Address

Research interests

  • Role of small non-coding RNA in the control of post-testicular sperm maturation in the epididymis
  • Role of primary cilia in the controle of epididymis development and homeostasis

The epididymis plays important roles in the acquisition of sperm motility and fertilizing abilities. This organ is thus essential to the control of male fertility. Our laboratory is interested in the different intercellular communication systems that ensure proper sperm maturation in the epididymis. In particular, we study two signaling pathways important to the control of reproductive functions:

– one mediated by the small non-coding RNAs transported by the extracellular vesicles secreted in the epididymal fluid

– another mediated by the primary cilia located on the surface of epididymal cells and acting as a biological antenna.

These studies are carried out using complementary techniques in imaging (confocal and electronic microscopy, fluidic imaging), molecular and cellular biology (PCR, Western blotting, organotypic air-liquid culture), on cell models, transgenic mice and human samples. All this work will enable us to identify the molecular and cellular factors important to sperm maturation and to ultimately develop new tools for the control of male fertilizing ability applicable to livestock and human health.

Members of the laboratory

Hong Chen, MSc
PhD student
ch4973@gmail.com

Sepideh Fakhari, MSc
PhD student
sepideh.fakhari.1@ulaval.ca

Laura Girardet, MSc
PhD student
lauragirardet@hotmail.fr

Céline Augière, PhD
Postdoc
celine.augiere@gmail.com

Camille Lavoie-Ouellet, MSc
Research assistant
camille.lavoie-ouellet@crchudequebec.ulaval.ca

Publications

Marc-André Sirard, DMV, PhD

5 Dec 2017

Research interests

  • Reproduction and epigenetics in domestic animals
  • Genomic and transcriptomic analyses of the oocyte and the embryo
  • Follicular growth and differentiation using trancriptomics and the evaluation of the follicular quality

The main focus of our research concerns the oocyte competence, which essentially depends on the follicle status. Our genomic tools allow us to discover and study the markers of healthy follicles in both cattle and humans to improve practices, particularly in in vitro fertilization. More recently, our research includes epigenetic aspects that allow the transmission of non-genetic information and more particularly the metabolic status of the mother and its influence on the quality of the oocyte, the embryo and the future newborn.

Members of the laboratory

Martine Boulet, BSc
MSc student
martine.boulet.4@ulaval.ca

Julie-Pier Robichaud, BSc
MSc student
jprob36@ulaval.ca

Asma Arjoune
PhD student
asma.arjoune.1@ulaval.ca

Simon Lafontaine, MSc
PhD student
simon.lafontaine.4@ulaval.ca

Meishong Shi, MSc
PhD student
MESHI3@exch.ulaval.ca

Mengqi Wang, MSc
PhD student
mengqi.wang.1@ulaval.ca

Muhammad Waqas, DVM, RVMP
PhD student
waqas_sk@yahoo.com

Chongyand WU, MSc
PhD student
chongyang.wu.1@ulaval.ca

Ying Zhang, MSc
PhD student
ying.zhang.2@ulaval.ca

Camila Bruna De Lima, PhD
Postdoc
camila-bruna.de-lima.1@ulaval.ca

Erika Cristina, PhD
Postdoc
erika08unifesp@gmail.com

Publications

Christopher Price, PhD

23 Nov 2017

Address

Research interests

  • Fibroblast growth factors (FGF) and follicle development
  • Role of mycotoxins in fertility
  • Myokines and ovarian function

Using culture models of ovine and bovine ovarian cells (granulosa, theca and endothelial), we are investigating the role of FGFs in follicle development. Our research has shown that one particular FGF (FGF18) is secreted from capillary endothelial cells in response to TGFB and BMP4, and increases the rate of granulosa cell death. Further, high fecundity Booroola sheep have lower levels of FGF18, showing a unique regulation of fertility by the vasculature.

Mycotoxins are prevalent in animal feed worldwide and impact livestock growth and fertility, particularly pigs. We have demonstrated that a common mycotoxin, DON, negatively affects granulosa cell function in cattle. In cattle, DON is converted to a metabolite (called DOM-1) that is generally considered to be non-toxic, however, our research has shown that DOM-1 seriously reduces theca cell growth and function, and causes follicle regression in vivo. These results show that mycotoxin metabolites may not be as inert as previously believed.

Dairy cattle undergo a period of infertility post-partum owing to the energy drain of lactation, and they mobilize significant stores of fat from adipose tissue. We are looking at the role of hormones secreted by adipose tissue (adipokines) and muscle (myokines) in ovarian function. Irisin is a recently discovered ‘exercise hormone’ secreted by muscle in humans and rodents, and we have found significant mRNA and protein abundance in subcutaneous adipose tissue in cattle. Plasma concentrations of irisin are elevated in cattle post-partum, and irisin increases granulosa cell metabolism but decreases function (estradiol secretion). Theca cells respond differently, as irisin decreases cell metabolism and has no effect on function (androgen secretion). These data suggest that post-partum anestrus in cattle may be exacerbated by irisin secreted from adipose tissue.

Members of the laboratory

Mathilde Daudon, MSc
Étudiante au doctorat
mathilde.daudon@umontreal.ca

El-Arbi Abulghasem, MSc
PhD student
el.abulghasem@gmail.com

Europa Mesa Serrano, MSc
PhD student
europa.meza.serrano@umontreal.ca

Publications

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