Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience

Research Interests

The Bowie Lab uses a combination of techniques to study ionotropic glutamate receptors (iGluRs), GABA-A receptors and more recently, Na+ channels. All ion-channel families are widespread in the vertebrate brain and fulfill many important roles in healthy individuals as well as being implicated in disease states associated with postnatal development (e.g. Autism, Schizophrenia), cerebral insult (e.g. Stroke, Epilepsy) and aging disorders (e.g. Alzheimer's disease, Parkinsonism). We are looking at iGluRs, GABA-A receptors and Na+ channels at two inter-related levels. In molecular terms, we are examining the events that occur when each ion-channel family is activated with the aim of developing novel therapeutic compounds. At the cellular level, we are studying the role that iGluRs, GABA-A receptors and Na+ channels fulfill in shaping the behaviour of neuronal circuits and how these processes may be corrected in disease states.

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Lab news

March 2021 - Congrats to the Meyerson Lab at Cornell University, as well as Amanda and Patricia from our lab, for their recent paper in eLife that highlights structural and functional aspects of heteromeric GluK2/K5 receptors, the most abundant kainate receptor in the mammalian brain.

Congrats to Dr. Bowie for becoming a recipient of an Ignite Grant that will develop intellectual property associated with AMPA-type ionotropic glutamate receptors. The Ignite Grants are part of the Neuro Commercialization Grant program that aims to accelerate the maturation and commercialization of neuroscience-related technology derived from research conducted at McGill. The objective of the Ignite Grant is to support small-scale validation/proof-of-principle efforts in the development of a neuroscience-related technology.

February 2021 - The lab said goodbye to Ryan with a celebratory take-out lunch. He was also gifted with a caricature done by our very talented post-doc, Arjun. Best of luck at UCSF Dr. Alexander, we will miss you! (See pics here).

January 2021 - Many congratulations to former Bowie Lab trainee, Dr. Patricia Brown, who has co-authored an exciting paper in Nature on recent advances in cryo-electron microscopy with her colleagues at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, UK. If you are too busy to read the paper, watch the accompanying YouTube video that she stars in.

Congrats to Niklas and former PhD rotation student Preethi for excellent student presentations at QLS Research Day. Niklas and Preethi were awarded the 1st and 2nd place prizes, respectively. Bravo!

Dr. Bowie wrote an Editorial for the Journal of Physiology titled, "Neurotransmitter-gated ion channels, still front and centre stage" featured in the 15 Jan 2021 Vol 599.2 Issue. This issue includes the work of our very own Dr. Ryan Alexander, as well as cover art done by Amanda Perozzo (see Publications). There are also a number of excellent symposium reviews related to research presented at the 2019 iGluRetreat and ISN Satellite Conference.

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