My major passions in life have always revolved around four things: love for my family and the team members of my laboratory, science and music. All four feed into each other making me the person I am. As far as I can remember, music has always fascinated me, not only the sounds but the mood and the colors it brings in my mind and lifts my soul. For me, if there is no music around, no science at all gets done and I lose my creativity.
Science and literature have always been with me, mostly a fascination for biology and ecology which evolved into microbiology and microbial genetics and recently into genomics, bioinformatics, integrative and systems biology and metadata analysis. I call it ecogenomics, environment and health.
I trained in biology with a major in ecology (BSc) at the Université de Moncton, in medical microbiology (MSc) at the Université de Montréal and in microbiology and bacterial genetics (PhD) at Université Laval. A Medical Research Council of Canada studentship gave me an opportunity to be a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University studying bacterial transposons and antibiotic resistance. An award from the American Society of Microbiology got me at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in the Luria and Delbruck laboratory to learn advanced bacterial genetics. There, I had the chance to meet Nobel James Watson and Barbara McClintock whom had a lasting effect in what I do. Others also had a major role in defining the scientist that I am, George Jacoby, John Wolfson, Bob Hancock, Hamilton Smith, Craig Venter and George Church.