CSC Board of Directors

 Executive Committee

Nicolas Cermakian, President

After my studies in Biochemistry at the Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières and University of Montreal, I went to do postdoctoral training in the laboratory of Dr. Paolo Sassone-Corsi at the Institut de génétique et de biologie moléculaire et cellulaire in Strasbourg, France (1998-2002), where I started to work on circadian rhythms. In 2002, I took up a position at the Douglas Institute Research Centre and McGill University, where I am presently an Associate Professor. My research deals with the molecular mechanisms underlying circadian clocks in mice and humans, and how these clocks can regulate different physiological systems, in particular the immune response. In addition to my role in the CSC, I have also sat on the Board of Directors of the Society for Research on Biological Rhythms for several years, presently as Secretary.

Michael Antle, Vice-president

After earning my Bachelor’s with Dr. Ben Rusak at Dalhousie University in 1994, I travelled to British Columbia for my graduate work with Dr. Ralph Mistlberger at Simon Fraser University (MA, 1998; PhD 2001).  Following a Post-Doctoral Fellowship with Dr. Rae Silver at Columbia University in New York, I took up my appointment at the University of Calgary and the Hotchkiss Brain Institute where I am a Full Professor.  My NSERC-funded research program examines the form and function of the mammalian circadian system, focusing on both photic and non-photic resetting of the circadian clock, as well as the underlying neural networks.  We study the circadian system with a variety of approaches, including behavioural, genetic, electrophysiological, and pharmacological.

Hai-Ying Mary Cheng, Secretary 

I hold a PhD in Medical Biophysics at the University of Toronto, under the supervision of Dr. Josef Penninger. It was Josef who taught me the power of mouse genetics and, more importantly, not to be afraid to step outside of my comfort zone in my journey to figure out the phenotypes of the knockout mice that I had generated or was studying. That journey led me to explore various fields during my doctoral training, including immunology, pain, addiction, cancer and finally circadian rhythms. In 2004, I moved to Columbus, Ohio to complete post-doctoral work in the lab of Dr. Karl Obrietan, a chronobiologist whose research focused on signal transduction pathways that regulated photic entrainment of the clock. Karl inspired me with his deep knowledge of signal transduction and his hands-on approach to mentorship; he also introduced me to the world of microRNAs. I started my own lab in 2008 at the University of Ottawa, and subsequently relocated it to the University of Toronto at Mississauga in 2011. The research that takes place in my lab reflects the diversity of my own training experiences and interests. My students study everything from signaling proteins to microRNAs to ubiquitin ligases, and their roles in circadian timekeeping or adult neurogenesis.

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Patricia Lakin-Thomas, Treasurer

I am originally a Californian who earned my PhD in Biology at the University of California, San Diego. I worked in Stuart Brody's lab where I learned to love the fungus Neurospora crassa and its circadian rhythms of spore formation. I subsequently spent a number of years at the University of Cambridge (UK) as an independent research fellow and lecturer before moving to the Biology Dept at York University as an Associate Professor in 2002. My lab is still using Neurospora as a model system to study the molecular basis of circadian rhythmicity. We use genetics, biochemistry and cell biology to investigate rhythmicity that doesn't require the canonical transcription/translation feedback loop. Our work may point towards common mechanisms of rhythm regulation in all eukaryotes.

 Members at large


Joel Levine

I became interested in chronobiology when I was an undergraduate at the University of Pennsylvania.  I volunteered in Norm Adler’s laboratory in the Department of Psychology. Norm studied reproductive behaviour in rats and also developed an independent interest in chronobiology. Alan Rosenwasser was a post-doctoral fellow in the lab and he taught me a lot about circadian rhythms.  After leaving that lab I get a PhD with Rich Miselis. My doctoral research involved using neural tracers to evaluate retinohypothalamic  projections in female rats.  Next I worked with F. Rob Jackson at the Worcester Foundation for Experimental Biology. Rob introduced me to Drosophila research and we worked on a role for the dunce gene in circadian timing. I also worked with Dr. Steven Reppert at the Harvard Medical School and Massachussetts General Hospital. My work with Steve focused mainly on clock genes in the silkmoth Antheraea Pernyi. Finally, I worked with Jeff Hall at Brandeis University.  It was in Jeff’s lab that I became interested in Drosophila social behaviour and the effect of the social environment on biological timing. This is what we study in my lab at UTM.

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Rae Silver

Helene L and Mark N Kaplan Professor of Natural and Physical Sciences

Psychology Department, Barnard College

Psychology Department, Columbia University

Department of Pathology and Cell Biology, Columbia University Medical School

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Florian Storch

Dr. Storch is an Associate Professor at the Department of Psychiatry at McGill University and a Researcher at the Douglas Mental Health University Institute. After completing his Ph.D. at the Max-Planck Institute for Biochemistry (Munich) in 1999, Dr. Storch pursued postdoctoral studies on the mammalian circadian timing system at Harvard Medical School’s Neurobiology Department before joining the faculty at McGill University in 2008. Dr. Storch’s lab focuses on rhythms and their role in physiology and pathophysiology using the rodents as a model organism. The lab is interested in the interaction of the circadian timing system with the reproductive axis and most recently in ultradian rhythms of behavioral arousal. Prompted by the findings in mice, Dr. Storch now explores in collaboration with the Douglas Bipolar Disorders Clinic possible links between rhythm dysregulation and psychopathology.

 Trainee Members

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Sarah Ferraro

I am currently a doctoral candidate at Concordia University under the supervision of Dr. Shimon Amir. I completed my bachelor’s degree at McGill University in the department of Physiology. During my time as an undergraduate, I had the opportunity to learn about chronobiology and developed a very passionate interest for the field. My thesis work is focused on circadian organization and clock gene expression in an animal model of autism. However, my research interests extends to the topic of circadian disruption in psychiatric disorders. 

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Andrea Smit

I am pursuing my PhD at Simon Fraser University in beautiful British Columbia. I received my BSc in Psychology from Trent University, and what started as an interest in sleep eventually led me to the field of chronobiology. I finished my masters under the supervision of Dr. Ralph Mistlberger, and am continuing my doctoral research in his Sleep and Circadian Neuroscience Lab as an NSERC CGS-D scholar. My research interests vary widely from examining the role of dopamine in food anticipatory activity, to measuring electrophysiological indices of attention in humans, but my dissertation work is concentrated on exploring the effect of light and industrialization on sleep timing and duration in those living traditional subsistence lifestyles. 

Past Board Members

Sara Hegazi, trainee representative, 2015-19

Tami Martino, Treasurer, 2013-19

Emma O’Callaghan, trainee representative, 2017

Lalanthi Ratnayake, trainee representative, 2017-18

Marc Cuesta, trainee representative, 2013-15

Elena Tsimakouridze, trainee representative, 2013-17

Ralph Mistlberger, member-at-large, 2013-15

Marie Dumont, member-at-large, 2013-17

Valérie Mongrain, Secretary, 2013-17

© Canadian Society for Chronobiology 2019