Patricia Pelufo Silveira
M.D., M.Sc., Ph.D.

  • Groupe thématique: 
    Adversité environnementale, neurodéveloppement et santé mentale
  • Division: 
    Neuroscience humaine


E-4116, Pavillon Perry

6875 Boulevard LaSalle
Montréal, QC
H4H 1R3

Images labo - cliquer pour agrandir: 

Chercheuse, Centre de recherche Douglas
Chef de groupe,
 Adversité environnementale, neurodéveloppement et santé mentale
Professeure agrégée, Département de psychaitrie, Université McGill
Chercheuse principale, Centre Ludmer pour la neuroinformatique et la santé mentale

Early life adversity and the co-morbidity between metabolic and psychiatric disease

Dr Silveira’s research focuses on how perinatal and early-childhood environments can shape and modulate both health and disease across the lifespan, into old age. Her aim is to identify genetic/epigenetic markers that interact with environmental adversities in childhood, modifying endophenotypes (impulsivity, sensitivity to reward, food choices) that ultimately affect healthy growth and neurodevelopment, increasing an individual’s risk for developing chronic diseases and mental illnesses across their lifespan. 

Relevant publications since 2016 (from a total of 120 since 2000):

  1. Miguel PM, Pereira LO, Barth B, de Mendonça Filho EJ, Pokhvisneva I, Nguyen TTT, Garg E, Razzolini BR, Koh DXP, Gallant H, Sassi RB, Hall GBC, O'Donnell KJ, Meaney MJ, Silveira PP. Prefrontal Cortex Dopamine Transporter Gene Network Moderates the Effect of Perinatal Hypoxic-Ischemic Conditions on Cognitive Flexibility and Brain Gray Matter Density in Children. Biol Psychiatry. 2019. pii: S0006-3223(19)31154-0. doi: 10.1016/j.biopsych.2019.03.983. [Epub ahead of print].
  2. Hari Dass SA, McCracken K, Pokhvisneva I, Chen LM, Garg E, Nguyen TTT, Wang Z, Barth B, Yaqubi M, McEwen LM, MacIsaac JL, Diorio J, Kobor MS, O'Donnell KJ, Meaney MJ, Silveira PP. A biologically-informed polygenic score identifies endophenotypes and clinical conditions associated with the insulin receptor function on specific brain regions. EBioMedicine. 2019;42:188-202. 
  3. Laureano DP, Alves MB, Miguel PM, Machado TD, Reis AR, Mucellini AB, Cunha FS, Lampert C, Salvador APA, Dalle Molle R, Mosca PR, Pokhvisneva I, Desai M, Ross MG, Silveira PP. Intrauterine Growth Restriction Modifies the Accumbal Dopaminergic Response to Palatable Food Intake. Neuroscience. 2019;400:184-195
  4. Silveira PP, Pokhvisneva I, Gaudreau H, Rifkin-Graboi A, Broekman BFP, Steiner M, Levitan R, Parent C, Diorio J, Meaney MJ. Birth weight and catch up growth are associated with childhood impulsivity in two independent cohorts. Sci Rep. 2018;8(1):13705. 
  5. Belsky J, Pokhvisneva I, Rema ASS, Broekman BFP, Pluess M, O'Donnell KJ, Meaney MJ, Silveira PP. Polygenic differential susceptibility to prenatal adversity. Dev Psychopathol. 2019 May;31(2):439-441. 
  6. Silveira PP, Pokhvisneva I, Parent C, Cai S, Rema ASS, Broekman BFP, Rifkin-Graboi A, Pluess M, O'Donnell KJ, Meaney MJ. Cumulative prenatal exposure to adversity reveals associations with a broad range of neurodevelopmental outcomes that are moderated by a novel, biologically informed polygenetic score based on the serotonin transporter solute carrier family C6, member 4 (SLC6A4) gene expression. Dev Psychopathol. 2017;29(5):1601-1617. 
  7. Mucellini AB, Fonseca NKOD, Manfro GG, Silveira PP. Hippocampal insulin resistance and altered food decision-making as players on obesity risk. Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2017;77:165-176. doi: 10.1016/j.neubiorev.2017.03.011. 
  8. Dalle Molle R, Fatemi H, Dagher A, Levitan RD, Silveira PP, Dubé L. Gene and environment interaction: Is the differential susceptibility hypothesis relevant for obesity? Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2017;73:326-339. 
  9. Reis RS, Dalle Molle R, Machado TD, Mucellini AB, Rodrigues DM, Bortoluzzi A, Bigonha SM, Toazza R, Salum GA, Minuzzi L, Buchweitz A, Franco AR, Pelúzio MC, Manfro GG, Silveira PP. Impulsivity-based thrifty eating phenotype and the protective role of n-3 PUFAs intake in adolescents. Transl Psychiatry. 2016;6:e755. 
  10. Silveira PP, Gaudreau H, Atkinson L, Fleming AS, Sokolowski MB, Steiner M, Kennedy JL, Meaney MJ, Levitan RD, Dubé L. Genetic Differential Susceptibility to Socioeconomic Status and Childhood Obesogenic Behavior: Why Targeted Prevention May Be the Best Societal Investment. JAMA Pediatr. 2016;170(4):359-64. 

Dr Silveira obtained an MD (2001) and specialized in Paediatrics (2002-2006). She received a MSc (2004) and a PhD (2007) in Neurosciences from the Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Brazil. She also completed a postdoctoral fellowship (2007–2009) in Dr Meaney´s Lab at the Douglas Institute. Before joining McGill and returning to the Douglas Institute in 2016, Dr Silveira was an Assistant Professor in the UFRGS Paediatrics Department (2009-2016) and led the externally funded lab, the DOHaD Porto Alegre group. 

A paediatrician and neuroscientist with extensive research, teaching and clinical experiences, Dr Silveira has also shown significant leadership in preparing tomorrow’s research leaders, supervising over 30 PhD and MSc students and mentoring several post-doctoral fellows.

  • Paulo Mathias Award – 5th International Symposium in Metabolic Programming and Stress/2nd Meeting ofthe Ibero-American DOHaD Chapter (2016)
  • Danone Prize – Science on the first 1000 days – Clinical Science (2016, 2015)
  • Danone Prize – Science on the first 1000 days – Basic Science (2016, 2015)
  • Lundbeck Prize – World Congress on Brain, Behavior and Emotions (2015)
  • David Barker Prize - 1st Meeting of Ibero-American DOHaD Chapter (2014)


Carla Dalmaz                                             - Visiting Professor                               2018-

Lisiane Bizarro                                           - Visiting Professor                               2019-

Maeson Latsko                                           - Postdoctoral fellow, HBHL                 2019-

Barbara Barth                                             - PhD, IPN Program                              2018-  

Aashita Batra                                             - PhD, IPN Program                              2018-

Kelly Guedes de Oliveira Scudini                - Visiting PhD student                          2018-

Randrielly Mercher Sobreira de Lima          - Visiting PhD student                          2019-

Euclides Mendonça                                    - Visiting PhD student                          2019-

Márcio Bonesso Alves                                – PhD UFRGS                                      2015-

Danitsa M. Rodrigues                                 – PhD UFRGS                                      2015-


Staff members

Irina Pokhvisneva

Zihan Wang

Sachin Patel