Réseau de recherche en santé de la vision Logo fonds de la recherche du Québec - santé Logo

History of the network

The Vision Health Research Network (VHRN) was created in 1995 with the determination of several researchers headed by Dr Jean-Réal Brunette, and followed by Dr Hélène Boisjoly, who wished to improve vision health in Quebec by concentrating the efforts of its researchers in vision.

The Vision Health Research Network functions under the auspices of the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Santé (FRQS). This governmental agency instigated the creation of research networks in the early 1990’s in order to promote collaboration within Quebec’s research community and to give Quebec a competitive edge in matters targeted by governmental health policies.

The scientific discoveries resulting from the studies undertaken by the members of the network are essential to the understanding of the normal and pathological visual function and to the development of better therapeutic strategies, such as early diagnosis of eye and brain diseases, visual training, behavioural rehabilitation of visual functions and visual implants.

Today, the network counts among its members more than 140 clinical and fundamental researchers from the seven universities of Quebec: Concordia University, McGill University, Université Laval, Université de Montreal, Université de Sherbrooke, Université du Québec à Montréal, and Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières.

The network’s members are affiliated to the four university ophthalmology departments of the province, the École d’optométrie, a dozen or so departments of fondamental sciences (psychology, biology, pharmacology, biophysics, physiology), a dozen clinical research centers (Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Montréal, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Québec, Centre de recherche Côte des Neiges, Centre de recherche Lucie-Bruneau, Centre Universitaire en Santé de l’Estrie, McGill University Health Center, Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital, Sainte Justine Hospital, Montreal Jewish Hospital, Laboratoire d’organogenèse expérimentale, Montreal Children’s Hospital, Montreal Neurological Institute), and to institutions such as the Institut Nazaret & Louis-Braille.

The VHRN is supported by the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Santé (FRQS) and la Fondation Antoine Turmel.


The Directors


cayouette_2016_zoom noir et blanc 2

Michel Cayouette, PhD
Director, 2018 – present



Pierre Lachapelle, PhD
Director, 2000 – 2011


JeanReal Brunette

Jean-Réal Brunette, MD, FRCSC
Director, 1995 – 1996





Isabelle Brunette

Isabelle Brunette, MD, FRCSC
Director, 2012 – 2018



Hélène Boisjoly, MD, FRCSC, MPH
Director, 1996 – 2000