A significant pool of physicians works in Saguenay, in the genomics and biomedical fields. The research is founded on regional phenomena.
Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean population characteristics and distinctive, tested clinical practices implemented in the region have stimulated development in terms of therapeutic health intervention research and innovation. Both fundamental and applied researches are founded on regional phenomena and interests for the growth and development of expertise on the national and international scales.
Leading health research groups have advanced their expertise in the fields of chronic diseases and primary care (Chaire de recherche sur les maladies chroniques en soins de première ligne and Projet V1SAGES), Epigenetic determinants of risk factors for cardiovascular diseases (EPIMET team), neuromuscular diseases (Neuromuscular disease research group – GRIMN), systemic approach to dyslipidemia and associated risks (ECOGENE-21 program and Centre de médecine génique communautaire de l'Université de Montréal). Finally, several clinician-scientists contribute with industry to find innovative care solutions in a range of biomedical fields.
The Biobank, Génome Québec Technology Centre, is established at the Regional University Hospital Centre of Chicoutimi, a world-calibre, state-of-the-art infrastructure. Dedicated to health and biodiversity sample management, the centre provides services to wide-ranging projects and initiatives.
Such a biobank is a genuine genetic strongbox, where a significant number of biological samples can be safely stored (e.g. blood, plasma, DNA, human tissue, urine, etc.). These biological samples are used by researchers to investigate the genetic foundations of a number of diseases and understand the relations between the environment and health. The data may also be used to paint the picture of regional health in an effort to help authorities better distribute public funds, especially for prevention and promotion purposes.
The Biobank drives technological innovation in its field.