Patricia Boksa
Ph.D.

Division: 
Neuroscience fondamentale

Patricia Boksa
 

Bureau: 
E-2110, Pavillon Perry

6875 Boulevard LaSalle
Montréal, QC 
H4H 1R3


(514) 761-6131 x5928

Fax: 
(514) 762-3034


Champs de recherche: 
Neurosciences fondamentales / Recherche animale

Thème de recherche: 
Psychose et désordres neurodéveloppementaux


Chercheuse, Centre de recherche Douglas
Professeure titulaire, Département de psychiatrie, Université McGill
Co-éditrice en chef, Journal of Psychiatry and Neuroscience



Neurobiologie de la schizophrénie et troubles psychiatriques neurodéveloppementaux


Mon programme de recherche principal implique l'étude des complications de la grossesse et de l'accouchement comme facteur de risque pour le développement subséquent de la schizophrénie.  Les causes de la schizophrénie ne sont pas connues.  Cependant, la schizophrénie serait causée d'un développement défectueux du cerveau, dû à une combinaison de facteurs génétiques et de causes environnementales précoces.  Les facteurs environnementaux précoces qui ont été associés à une augmentation du risque de développer la schizophrénie dans les populations humaines incluent: les complications de grossesse et d'accouchement comme les infections maternelles durant la grossesse, l'hypoxie à la naissance et la carence en fer maternelle pendant la grossesse. Mon laboratoire utilise des modèles animaux pour étudier les effets de complications périnatales (infections maternelles, hypoxie, naissance par césarienne, carence en fer, administration d'oxytocine durant l'accouchement) sur le développement du cerveau et son fonctionnement (comportement, neurotransmission, fonction de l'hippocampe, mécanismes moléculaires, etc...) en relation avec la schizophrénie et les autres troubles psychiatriques neurodéveloppementaux.

Plus récemment, j'ai aussi participé comme chercheur principale dans ACCESS-Canada, le premier réseau lancé par le programme Stratégie de recherche axée sur le patient (SRAP) des IRSC. Sous la direction d'Ashok Malla (leader) et de Srividya Iyer (directrice clinique/scientifique), le but du réseau est de transformer les services en santé mentale pour les jeunes à 13 sites de démonstration au Canada en: 1- Améliorant l'implication et la sensibilisation des jeunes en santé mentale, menant à une identification des personnes en besoin de services et 2- En rendant les services appropriés, informés par l'évidence  accessibles dès que possible.  La composante de recherche évaluative de ce projet  fournira des évidences de l'efficacité des composantes de la transformation.


1. Boksa, P., Zhang, Y. and Nouel, D. (2015) Maternal oxytocin administration before birth influences the effects of birth anoxia on the neonatal rat brain. Neurochemical Research 40(8):1631-43.

2. Boksa, P., Joober, R. and Kirmayer, L.J. (2015) Mental wellness in Canada’s Aboriginal communities: striving towards reconciliation. Journal of Psychiatry and Neuroscience 40(6):363-5.

3. Iyer, S.N., Boksa, P., Lal, S., Shah, J., Marandola, G., Jordan, G., Doyle, M., R. Joober, R. and Malla, A.K. (2015) Transforming youth mental health: a Canadian perspective. Irish Journal of Psychological Medicine 32:51-60.

4. Harvey, L. and Boksa, P. (2014) Additive effects of maternal iron deficiency and prenatal immune activation on adult behaviors in rat offspring. Brain, Behavior and Immunity 40: 27-37.

5. Harvey, L. and Boksa, P. (2014) Do prenatal immune activation and maternal iron deficiency interact to affect neurodevelopment and early behavior in rat offspring? Brain, Behavior and Immunity 35: 144–154.

6. Burt, M.A., Tse Y.C., Boksa, P. and Wong, T.P. (2013) Prenatal immune activation interacts with stress and corticosterone exposure later in life to modulate N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor synaptic function and plasticity. International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology 16(8):1835-48.

7. Harvey, L. and Boksa, P. (2012) A stereological comparison of GAD67 and reelin expression in the hippocampal stratum oriens of offspring from two mouse models of maternal inflammation during pregnancy. Neuropharmacology 62(4):1767-76.

8. Nouel, D., Burt, M., Zhang, Y., Harvey, L. and Boksa, P. (2012) Prenatal exposure to bacterial endotoxin reduces the number of GAD67- and reelin-immunoreactive neurons in the hippocampus of rat offspring. European Neuropsychopharmacology 22(4):300-7. 

9. Boksa, P. (2010) Effects of prenatal infection on brain development and behavior: a review of findings from animal models. Brain, Behavior and Immunity 24, 881-897.

10. Cui, K., Ashdown, H., Luheshi, G.N. and Boksa, P. 2009) Effects of prenatal immune activation on hippocampal neurogenesis in the rat. Schizophrenia Research 113(2-3):288-97.

11. Boksa, P. (2009) On the neurobiology of hallucinations. Journal of Psychiatry and Neuroscience 34(4):260-2.

12. Boksa, P. and Zhang, Y. (2008) Epinephrine administration at birth prevents long-term changes in dopaminergic parameters caused by Cesarean section birth in the rat. Psychopharmacology 200(3):381-91.

13. Ashdown, H., Dumont, Y., Ng, M., Poole, S., Boksa, P. and Luheshi G.N. (2006) The role of cytokines in mediating effects of prenatal infection on the fetus: implications for schizophrenia. Molecular Psychiatry 11(1), 47-55.

14. Fortier, M.-E., Joober, R., Luheshi, G.N. and Boksa, P. (2004) Maternal exposure to bacterial endotoxin during pregnancy enhances amphetamine-induced locomotion and startle responses in adult rat offspring. Jornal of Psychiatric Research 38(3), 335-345.

15. Boksa, P. and El-Khodor, B.F. (2003) Birth insult interacts with stress at adulthood to alter dopaminergic function in animal models: Possible implications for schizophrenia and other disorders. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews. 27 (1-2), 91-101.
 


Patricia Boksa obtained her Ph.D. in 1980 in Pharmacology and Therapeutics from McGill University. In 1983, she joined the Department of Psychiatry at McGill, where she is currently a Full Professor, as well as an associate member of the Dept. of Neurology and Neurosurgery. Dr. Boksa has been a principle investigator at the Douglas Mental Health University Institute since 1983. She is a neuroscientist conducting basic research on pregnancy and birth complications as risk factors for the later development of schizophrenia. Her research involves the use of animal models to investigate effects of various perinatal complications (i.e., birth hypoxia, C-section birth, maternal infection during pregnancy) on neurodevelopmental outcomes relevant to schizophrenia. Over the years, Dr. Boksa has been continually involved with the teaching and training of students and mentoring of tenure-track academic staff in the Dept. of Psychiatry. Among other activities, she has served as a member of Senate at McGill University, as Chair and Scientific Officer on CIHR grant committees, as President of the Canadian College of Neuropsychopharmacology and as co-Editor in Chief of the Journal of Psychiatry and Neuroscience.


  • Douglas Hospital
  • Dobell Pavillion
  • Brain imaging centre