The Prix Acfas Léo-Pariseau was awarded to Alain Brunet, full professor in the Department of Psychiatry. “La Preuve par l’Image” Jury Prize, sponsored by NSERC, was awarded to Anja Geitmann, Dean of the Faculty of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.
The Prix Acfas Léo-Pariseau is named in honour of Léo Pariseau, radiologist and first President of Acfas. It is awarded to a researcher in recognition of the excellence and influence of his or her work in the biological or health sciences.
For over 20 years, Professor Alain Brunet of McGill’s Faculty of Medicine has been studying the impact of traumatic events, with a particular focus on developing treatments for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). In the early 2000s, Prof. Brunet developed Reconsolidation Therapy, a treatment based current understandings of how human memory works. In just a few sessions, this psychotherapy, using beta-blockers, reduces the strength of a specific emotional memory on which PTSD symptoms are formed. It featured on Québec Science magazine’s list of the top ten discoveries of 2008.
La Preuve par l’Image
The Prix “La Preuve par l’Image,” was created in 2010 to promote images as a vehicle for science-based learning, including images from all scientific research areas. In 2016, the competition was opened to researchers across Canada, thanks to the collaboration of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC).
Geitmann won the prize for a colorized photo based on a scanning electron micrograph acquired by a former member of her lab, David Seboda, of a pudique mimosa, a plant known for its sensitive compound leaves that fold up when touched and reopen a few minutes later.
Geitmann is Professor and Dean of the Faculty of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at McGill University. From 2001 to 2015, she was a professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at the Université de Montréal and a scientist at the Institut de recherche en biologie végétale. She sits on the editorial and advisory boards of several scientific journals, including Cell, Plant Physiology and Journal of Experimental Botany. Her laboratory’s research focuses on the biomechanics of plant evolution and reproduction, biomechanical modeling and live cellular and ultrastructural imaging.