Christopher Brett is an Assistant Professor of Biology and Canada Research Chair at Concordia University and Adjunct Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology  at McGill University in beautiful Montréal, QC, Canada. His research program is dedicated to understanding how the endocytic system functions and how defects in this pathway lead to symptoms associated with neurodevelopmental disorders like autism, mental retardation and ADHD.

The ion and membrane transport laboratory

Specializing in both yeast and neural cell biology, our lab is dedicated to understanding how sodium hydrogen exchangers (ion transporters) and the fusion machinery (responsible for membrane transport or trafficking) work together in the endocytic system to control protein degradation, to determine organelle size, shape and number, and to allow synaptic pruning in neurons. Mutations in genes responsible for endocytosis - such as NHE9, a sodium hydrogen exchanger - are linked to autism spectrum disorders and ADHD. By determining the effects of these mutations on endocytic function, we aim to uncover the cellular basis of these diseases - a necessary step towards developing treatments.  Our lab is affiliated with the Groupe d'Étude des Protéines Membranaires (GÉPROM), the Centre de recherche sur la conception, les mechanismes d'action et la vectorisation des médicaments (Pharmaqam) and the Centre for Microscopy at Concordia (CMAC). Check out the research page for more details, and have a look at the publications page for a complete list of research articles from the lab.

Research opportunities updated Apr 2014


Applicants with experience studying endocytosis, membrane fusion, or ion transport in yeast or neurons are particularly encouraged to apply. Check out the opportunities page for details.

Laboratory news updated Apr 2014

Apr 26 2013 Congratulations! and a warm welcome to Matthew Carnevale a NSERC USRA recipient and new B.Sc. honours student in the lab.

Apr 25 2014 A warm welcome back to Dipti Patel who, after graduating with her M.Sc., is back in the lab part time to complete her studies on vacuole fusion and fission. Glad to have you back Dipti!

Apr 22 2014 Congratulations! to Alexandra Peebles, Max Howard, Rupinder Boora, Zarin Arshy, Narges Kalantary & Rasha Al-Homsy for completing their B.Sc. honors projects in the lab. Great job guys!

Apr 19 2013 Congratulations! and a warm welcome to new graduate student Jeremy Glass-Pilon a Concordia USRA and NSERC Master's Fellowship recipient. Jeremy is also a leader of Concordia's iGEM team. Keep up the great work Jeremy!

Apr 19 2014 Chris (along with Alisa Piekny, Michael Sacher, and Bill Zerges) was awarded funds for the NSERC RTI program and Concordia University to purchase a laser scanning confocal microscope. Thank you NSERC! It will be a welcome addition to the Centre for Microscopy at Concordia.

Ma 15 2014 Chris along with Bernard Turcotte (McGill) and Malcolm Whiteway (Concordia) will be organizing the international SMYTE meeting held in Montreal this year in late August. More details coming soon!

Jan 15 2014 A warm welcome back to Mahmoud Karim who, after graduating with his M.Sc., is back in the lab as our lab manager and yeast vacuole master technician and plans to start his Ph.D. in the lab this fall. Glad to have you back Mahmoud!

Jan 01 2014 A heartfelt goodbye to Gabriel Lapointe our lab manager and microscope specialist at CMAC. Gabe is now a microscope technician and sales consultant for Olympus Canada.

Oct 30 2013 A big thank you! to Joël Richard, who, after graduating with his M.Sc., stepped in and helped train new students as a technician in our lab. Joël is now a research assistant & evaluator in PEPP at the Douglas Mental Health University Institute.

Sep 20 2013 Congratulations to recent M.Sc. graduates Dipti Patel, Joël Richard, Mahmoud Karim, & Mark Guterman who all defended their theses in a record 4 days.

Sep 01 2013 A warm welcome to Erin McNally, a new graduate student in the lab.

May 03 2013 Concordia University and GEPROM to study the structure and function of NHEs in collaboration with Guillaume Lamoureux and David Wash.

Apr 23 2013 Congratulations Sevan Mattie! He was awarded an NSERC USRA to perform research in the lab over the summer. Sevan was also nominated Valedictorian of the 2013 graduating class at Concordia University. Sevan is now a graduate student in Heidi McBride's lab at the Montreal Neurological Institute.

Want to meet the group?

Check out the members page, or If you want to meet us in person, check out the meetings page for a list of local meetings and scientific conferences that we will be attending in the near future.


Please feel free to contact us.

Funding generously provided by

find us @

Concordia University
Loyola Campus
Biology Department
7141 Sherbrooke St W
Montréal, QC Canada
H4B 1R6
514 848 2424 
x5988 lab
x3398 office


concordia universitycmac • biologymyConcordiasimsshuttle • cscis


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cihr • nserc • crc • cfi  • frq


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michael sacher, concordia • john oh, concordia • jean-louis schwartz, u de m • harley kurata, ubc • sarah jenna, uqam • hojatollah vali, mcgill • • alisa piekny, concordia • alex merz, uw • stéphane lefrançois, u de m • david walsh, concordia • gord rintoul, sfu • frank lynn, ubc • jahn ehses, ubc • vlad titorenko, concorida • guillaume lamoureux, concordia • rajini rao, johns hopkins • mark donowitz, johns hopkins • gyanu lamichanne, johns hopkins • olga kovbasnjuk, johns hopkins • steve walkley, albert einstein 

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