Cancer and Genetic Diseases

Cellular Interactions and Development

Under the direction of Jean Vacher

Research Unit

The ultimate goal of the laboratory is to understand the molecular and cellular mechanisms that regulate bone homeostasis. Throughout life, equilibrium between two opposite phenomena, bone formation and bone resorption, has to be maintained. When osteoclast activity is affected severe diseases such as osteoporosis and osteopetrosis can occur. Particularly, osteopetrosis is observed when osteoclast cells are deficient or absent, thereby causing an excess of bone mass and a severe reduction of the bone marrow cavity, leading to death. 

To gain insights into osteopetrosis, the team studies the grey-lethal Ostm1 null mouse model that reproduces the human infantile and most severe form of this disorder. Mouse genetics including transgenesis, conditional ablation and genome editing are used in the laboratory to dissect in vivo the intracellular role(s) and molecular mechanism(s) of Ostm1. 

Jean Vacher

Research Unit Director

  • Director, Cellular Interactions and Development Research Unit, IRCM
  • Full IRCM Research Professor
  • Full Research Professor, Department of Medicine (accreditation in molecular biology), Université de Montréal
  • Adjunct Professor, Department of Medicine (Division of Experimental Medicine), McGill University

Degrees and relevant experience

  • D.Sc. in biochemistry, Université de Paris VII, France (1980)
  • Thesis in biochemistry, Université de Paris VII, France (1985)
  • Postdoctoral fellowship in genetics of development, Cornell University, New York, USA (1986-1987)
  • Postdoctoral fellowship in molecular biology, Princeton University, New Jersey, USA (1988-1991)
Jean Vacher
Research Unit Director
Michael Bruccoleri
PhD student
Monica Pata
Research Assistant
Pardis Yousefi Behzadi
M.Sc. student

Ongoing projects


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Contact information

Montreal Clinical Research Institute (IRCM)
110, des Pins Avenue West
Montréal, Québec  H2W 1R7

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Cancer and Genetic Diseases