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 Home / About Us > Dr Alain Dagher

Contact info

Dr Alain Dagher
Montreal Neurological Institute
3801, University Street
Montreal, QC H3A 2B4

Tel: 1-514-398-1726
E-mail: [email protected]


Research keywords

  • Appetite control
  • Functional brain imaging
  • Cognitive neuroscience
  • Decision-making
  • Ghrelin


Alain Dagher, MD
Professor of Neurology & Neurosurgery and Psychology

Biographical Sketch

Alain Dagher received his B.Eng and M.Eng in Electrical Engineering from McGill University. He then completed his MD at University of Toronto, followed by a residency in neurology at Cornell University Medical Center in New York, and at McGill University. He did a postdoctoral fellowship at the Hammersmith Hospital and National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, Queen Square, London, where he trained in movement disorders and functional brain imaging. There he developed a novel method for measuring in vivo dopamine release in the human brain using positron emission tomography. He returned to the Montreal Neurological Institute in 1997 where his lab works on various aspects of functional brain imaging with a particular interest in Parkinson's disease, addiction and appetite control. He is Professor in the departments of Neurology and Neurosurgery and Psychology at McGill.

Click here for pdf CV

Click here for PubMed listing

Research Interests

Broadly speaking my research aims to understand the function of brain regions innervated by dopamine. These interconnected brain areas play a key role in reward, learning, motivation, and decision-making. This research has applications to Parkinson's Disease, schizophrenia, drug addiction and obesity, and to gaining an understanding of normal brain function. Almost all of my work uses functional brain imaging methods in human subjects. I have also made contributions to basic imaging methodology, most notably in developing a PET technique that allows the measurement of dopamine release in vivo in the human brain.

I use fMRI to model addiction as a disorder of choice. I have used neuroeconomics approaches to the study of drug craving and hunger, based on the analogy between incentive salience and “economic value”.

I have become interested in the role of the reward system in appetite and obesity. We were the first group to show that the appetite stimulating hormone ghrelin acts on brain reward systems. Our current studies aim to understand the role of energy balance signals, stress, personality in the neural control of appetite.

� Montreal Diabetes Research Center 2018
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