Our Research Axes

Control and harness light to develop cutting-edge microscopy techniques to explore and understand how neural cells form brain circuits that give rise to behaviour and cognition.

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Investigate and unravel links between developmental processes taking place during the first two decades of life and the occurrence of psychiatric disorders in young adulthood.

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Image and decipher in greater detail the complex organization of the structural and functional brain network, more specifically when precise tasks are undertaken, especially those involving emotions.

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Study and understand the biological processes underlying the development and the maturation of the brain.

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Research Centres

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CERVO

CERVO Brain Research Centre

CERVO is one of the most important research centre in neurosciences and mental health in Canada. With more than 60 researchers leading research teams for a total of 500 people, research at CERVO focuses on root causes of brain disorders. CERVO offers a broad multidisciplinary expertise, from membrane biophysics to social intervention, biophotonics and cognition psychology.

The mandate of the CERVO is to further our knowledge on the causes and treatments of neurological and psychiatric disorders with the development of innovating approaches to decipher the brain’s mysteries. This goal is supported by the constant interaction between clinical and fundamental research.

CERVO’s scientific program revolves around three major research axes working in synergy using innovating approaches:

  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Integrative Neuroscience
  • Clinical and Cognitive Neuroscience
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COPL

Centre for Optics, Photonics and Lasers

The Centre for Optics, Photonics and Lasers (COPL) is composed of 42 research teams from eight Quebec universities working in synergy to develop the outstanding potential of optics & photonics for the benefit of future generations. Founded in 1989 with the goal of sharing knowledge, know-how and resources, the COPL, with unwavering commitment, carries out its stated mission of training students and highly qualified personnel, conducting fundamental and applied research and contributing to socio-economic development.

In keeping with this mission, COPL research activities since 2014 have generated 125 graduate diplomas, 522 publications in peer-reviewed journals, 292 invited presentations, 11 patents and the creation of 4 spin-off companies.

The Centre performs research in the following axes:

  • Lasers and Short Pulses
  • Fiber Optics and Guided-Wave Optics
  • Photonic Materials
  • Optical Communications
  • Biophotonics

The internationally-renowned researchers, state-of-the-art facilities and critical mass of scientific expertise place it among the best centres for research and training in optics and photonics worldwide.

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Canada Excellence
Research Chair
in Neurophotonics

Since 2015, Prof. Pierre Marquet, Ph.D., M.D., has been the chairholder of the Canada Excellence Research Chair in Neurophotonics (CERCN). A pioneer in the development of digital holographic microscopy, Prof. Market conducts research aimed at developing cutting-edge optical techniques for the identification of new high-risk biomarkers and endophenotypes of major psychiatric disorders with a neurodevelopmental component, such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and recurrent major depression.

Exploring brain tissue and neural cells derived from stem cells of patients and at-risk children with new cutting-edge optical techniques will enable a better understanding of the neurobiology of major psychiatric disorders. Consequently, their detection and treatment will be improved. Therefore, the research program of the CERCN is structured around four major research axes: neurophotonics, neurodevelopment biology, neuroimaging and neurodevelopmental psychiatry. From optics-photonics to psychiatry, engineering and cellular biology, the broad expertise of CERCN researchers and professionals will allow the team to achieve the goals of this transdisciplinary research program. Ultimately, the research outcomes will benefit the patients, their children and their families.

For more information, visit Prof. Marquet’s profile on the web site of the Canada Excellence Research Chair program:

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International Joint Unit
in neurodevelopment and child psychiatry

Established in 2016, the International Joint Unit (IJU) in neurodevelopment and child psychiatry affiliated with Université Laval and Université de Lausanne is led by Prof. Pierre Marquet, Ph.D., M.D. It is also supported by the National Centre Competence in Research SYNAPSY . The goal of this IJU is the identification of high-risk biomarkers and endophenotypes of major psychiatric disorders with a neurodevelopmental component such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and recurrent major depression. Also, this IJU offers the unique opportunity to carry out multicentre studies involving cohorts of patients and their children, both in Canada and Switzerland. By bringing together experts in the field, the IJU fosters the emergence of a world-class excellence centre on neurodevelopment and child psychiatry.

Our Team

Pierre Marquet, Ph.D., M.D.

Psychiatrist, Pierre Marquet also holds a diploma of physical engineering from EPFL and a M.D./Ph.D. in neurophotonics from UNIL. Recognised worldwide for his pioneering work on digital holographic microscopy, he is a professor at Université Laval and the chairholder of the CERC in Neurophotonics. He is also the director of the International Joint Unit (IJU) in neurodevelopment and child psychiatry. The goal of this IJU is to define infantile at-risk syndrome of major psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and major depression disorder by the identification of high-risk biomarkers and endophenotypes with the help of neurophotonics tools. He is the author or co-author of more than 140 scientific publications (6000 citations, h-index 33), of many patents and is the co-founder of three technological start-up companies.


Click here for Dr. Marquet gives due consideration to your candidacy

Our Publications