Sylvie Girard, PhD

Associate professor, CHU Ste-Justine, University of Montreal

Complete address

  • 514 345-4931 ext 2448
  • Centre de Recherche du CHU Sainte-Justine,
    3175, Côte Ste-Catherine,
    Montréal, QC H3T 1C5

Research interests

  • Pregnancy complications (preterm birth, preeclampsia, growth restriction)
  • Inflammation at the maternal-fetal interface
  • Role of in utero inflammation on fetal development

Pregnancy complications (i.e. preterm birth, intrauterine growth restriction or preeclampsia) are important pathologies of pregnancy associated with abnormal function of the placenta. These have important negative effects on the developing fetus, affecting primarily brain development but also increasing the incidence of cardiovascular diseases in affected newborns. My laboratory is interested in understanding the role of inflammation, occurring during pregnancy, on the maternal-fetal interface, particularly the placenta, leading to these pathological pregnancies and increasing the incidence of neurodevelopmental disorders. Our work focuses on non-pathogenic inflammatory mediators (namely alarmins or damage-associated molecular pattern, DAMPs), such as uric acid and HMGB1), in order to to determine their role at the maternal-fetal interface, effects on the placenta and the long-term impact on child development. Alongside, we also study pregnancy complications in humans in order to understand the changes in the maternal immune system in relation with placental dysfunction leading to the deleterious impact on the fetus. Globally, our objective is to get a better understanding of the mechanisms linking prenatal inflammation, placental dysfunction and pathological pregnancies in order to develop new diagnostic and therapeutic strategies targeting the placenta to protect the newborn.

Members of the laboratory

Ines Boufaied. MSc
Research Assistant

Marie-Ève Brien, MSc
PhD Student

Camille Couture, MSc
PhD Student

Virginie Gaudreault, BSc
MSc Student

Jonathan Charron, BSc
MSc Student