Marc-Olivier DEGUISE


Marc-Olivier DEGUISE
Graduate Program: Cellular & Molecular Medicine

Bachelor of Science, Honours in Biomedical Science, University of Ottawa (2009)

Marc-Olivier Deguise


Year of Entry: 2014

PhD Supervisor: Dr. Rashmi Kothary

Personal Background:

I was raised in Sorel-Tracy, a small town near Montreal. Unlike most students in Quebec, I did not do Cegep, and came to Ottawa to do my undergraduate studies after completing grade 12. I conducted a small research project in the second year of my B.Sc. as part of Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP) but did not really get involved thoroughly until the 4th year. I started doing research in the laboratory of Dr. Kothary for my honours project, which truly triggered my passion for research. Since then, I have been striving to understand the pathophysiology of a neuromuscular disorder called spinal muscular atrophy (SMA).

Research Focus:

My research revolves around a paediatric neuromuscular disorder called spinal muscular atrophy (SMA). SMA is a very interesting disease since it is caused by depletion of one protein that is found in every cell of the body, yet only motor neurons seem to show an overt phenotype. Dr. Kothary’s laboratory is interested in understanding the involvement of other organs to SMA pathogenesis. The focus of my project is to elucidate the molecular mechanism underlying the contribution of non-neuronal cell types to SMA disease pathogenesis.

Scholarship Support:

  • 2018 Canadian Medical Hall of Fame Award for medical students
  • 2018 Audrey J. Boyce MD/PhD Fellowship
  • 2017 Award of Excellence in graduate studies – Cellular and molecular medicine program
  • 2017 Dr. Ronald G. Worton Researcher in Training Award of the Ottawa Hospital
  • 2016-2019 University of Ottawa Excellence Scholarship
  • 2016-2019 Fonds de recherche Santé Québec (FRQS) – Doctorat (declined)
  • 2016- 2019 Frederick Banting and Charles Best Canada Graduate Scholarship – Doctoral Award (CGS-D)
  • 2014-2016 - MD/PhD Program Scholarship
  • 2015 - CIHR Graduate Scholarship
  • 2014-2015 - Canada Graduate Scholarships program - CIHR (Master’s program)

Publications list

Fields of Interest

  • Spinal muscular atrophy
  • Neuromuscular disease
  • Metabolism
  • Immune system
  • Muscle
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