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Welcome to my website!


yoland at the scope I am French Canadian. I was born in a small village of about 2000 people located on the east coast of the Gaspe peninsula in the province of Quebec. I moved to Quebec City in 1980 to pursue my undergraduate education in Biology at Laval University. During the course of my undergraduate studies, I discovered the amazing world of neuroscience research. Upon completing a summer research project during my last year of undergraduate education, I decided to join the laboratory of Dr. Andre Parent, Professor in the Department of Anatomy at Laval University.

I spent five years in Dr. Parent’s laboratory doing a series of anatomical and immunohistochemical studies of the connectivity and neurochemical organization of the primate basal ganglia. After my PhD, I spent two years in the MRC Unit in Oxford University, England where I worked under the supervision of Professor Paul Bolam. Those two years gave me the tools necessary to study the synaptic organization of the brain. I became fascinated by this field of research. After my experience in England, I joined the laboratory of Professor Mahlon DeLong in the Department of Neurology at Johns Hopkins University to increase my knowledge of basal ganglia electrophysiology. These two postdoctoral trainings gave me the basis to start my career as an independent investigator in 1991 as Assistant Professor in the Department of Anatomy in Laval University where I spent five years.

In 1996, I got an offer to join the Department of Neurology and the Yerkes National Primate Research Center at Emory University. The strength of the Department of Neurology in movement disorders research combined with the great opportunity to work in one of the largest primate centers in United States provided a very attractive and challenging offer I could not refuse. Therefore, in September 1996, many of my colleagues and I, left Quebec to establish our new home in the Division of Neuroscience at the Yerkes National Primate Center of Emory University. Since then, our research team has grown dramatically, and we have established strong scientific collaborations with many colleagues at Emory, which gave us the opportunity to expand our research programs to cover a broad range of anatomical, physiological and behavioral aspects of basal ganglia functions in normal and pathological conditions.