Baillet Lab: Dynamic Neuroimaging Laboratory (neuroSPEED)

Pictures from MEG training workshop at The Neuro.


Our team develops methodological and experimental approaches to probe the dynamics of the human brain. We are particularly interested in exploring the multiplicity of time scales where brain processes occur and dovetail: from milliseconds (as necessary for perception) to the lifespan (as revealed during learning, re-learning following a brain insult and aging).

We specialize in developing original approaches for time-resolved imaging of brain functions and dysfunctions. To this end, electromagnetic brain imaging using MEG is our scanning method of choice. We also investigate how the integration of multimodal information, e.g. of brain structures, activity and connectivity, helps contribute to a better understanding of the dynamics of brain activity, from the millisecond to the life span.

We are interested in translating our research to innovative approaches for routine clinical applications of MEG in a variety of neurological and neurosurgical conditions. Our collaborations so far have a strong clinical focus on the pre-surgical evaluation of epilepsy, the rehabilitation of motor and language functions after stroke, and in the evaluation of cognitive impairments.

One additional primary mission of our lab is to provide state-of-the-art support and expertise to scientific investigators interested in using MEG as a tool for cognitive and clinical neuroscience studies. The MEG Program at McGill’s Montreal Neurological Institute is part of the comprehensive McConnell Brain Imaging Centre and is an open platform for academic researchers and industrial partners.


Sylvain Baillet, PhD
Associate Professor Department of Neurology and Neurosurgery
Associated with the Department of Biomedical Engineering
Director, MEG research

Philippe Albouy, PhD
Research Associate

Elizabeth Bock, MSc
MEG System Manager

Therese Lennert, PhD
Research Associate

Benjamin Morillon, PhD
Research Associate

Julia Guiomar Niso Galan, PhD
Research Associate

François Tadel, MSc
MEG Software Engineer, Brainstorm project

Students, Trainees & Visitors

- Christine Cahaney: Undergrad Student Volunteer, McGill (with Alain Dagher)
- Eva Chadnova: PhD student, Integrated Program in Neuroscience, McGill (with Robert Hess)
- Hui Ling Chan: Visiting Graduate Research Trainee, Neuroscience (Electrical Engineering)
- Hao Yu Chen: Undergrad Student Volunteer, McGill
- Li Yuan (Debby) Chen, Undergrad Student Volunteer, McGill
- Sébastien Déry: Masters Student, Biomedical Engineering, McGill
- Thomas Donoghue: Undergrad Student Volunteer, McGill
- Peter Donhauser: PhD Candidate, Integrated Program in Neuroscience, McGill
- Konstantinos Nasiotis: PhD Candidate, Integrated Program in Neuroscience, McGill (with Christopher Pack)
- Mansooreh Pakravan: Visiting PhD Candidate, Sharif University, Iran
- Soheila Samiee: PhD Candidate, Integrated Program in Neuroscience, McGill
- Maryse Thomas: PhD Candidate, in rotation for the Integrated Program in Neuroscience, McGill (with Vince Gracco)
- Ishan Walpola: Undergrad Student Volunteer, McGill

More about neuroSPEOPLE:

Alumni (former PhD students and post-doc associates)

Esther Florin, PhD
Research Associate

Diana Escalona: Visiting Graduate Research Trainee, Biomedical Engineering (Mexico)
Samantha Gauvreau: Undergrad Student Volunteer, McGill
Chia-Hsiung Cheng: Visiting Graduate Research Trainee, Neuroscience (Taiwan)
Rey R. Ramirez, PhD, 2008–11 (now MEG scientist at the University of Washington)
Yohan Attal, PhD, 2007–10, Computer-assisted decision making using MRI during the acute phase of stroke (now post-doc at Institut du Cerveau et de la Moelle, Paris)
Sheraz Khan, PhD, 2006–09, (50% with Habib Ammari) Optical flow and Helmoltz-Hodge decomposition of the dynamics of cortical currents. (now Lecturer at MGH/Harvard Medical School)
Guillaume Auzias, PhD, 2005–09, Sulcal-based diffeomorphic coregistration of cortical surfaces. (now post-doc at University of Marseille-Mediterranee)
Florence Gombert, PhD, 2005—09, Electromagnetic functional imaging of epilepsy (now at Development & Communication Office at Institut du Cerveau et de la Moelle, Paris)
Charlotte Rosso, MD, PhD, 2005—09, On the role of MRI in the evaluation of acute stroke. (now Stroke Neurologist at the La Salpetriere Hospital Stroke Center, Paris)
Benoit Cottereau, PhD, 2004—08, Multiresolution electromagnetic brain imaging with an application to dynamic retinotopy. (now post-doc at CNRS, Toulouse, France)
Julien Lefèvre, PhD, 2004–07, Spatio-temporal sequencing of brain activity (now Assistant Professor of Computer Science, University of Marseille-Mediterranee)
Lucie Luneau: MSc student, Neuroscience: Paris VI University, France
Nidiyare Hevia-Montiel, PhD, 2002–06, Anticipation of stroke outcome during the acute phase using diffusion-weighted MRI. (now research scientist at University of Mexico)
Karim Jerbi, PhD, 2001–05 (with Line Garnero), Long-distance cooperation between cerebral areas. (now INSERM Principal Investigator, Lyon, France)

Ongoing projects

Functional image reconstruction from MEG/EEG data, with coregistration with MRI
Methods: Inverse models, estimation and statistical appraisal.

Selected publications:
Baillet, S.; Mosher, J. & Leahy, R. (2001), Electromagnetic brain mapping, IEEE Signal Processing Magazine, 18(6), 14–30.
Cottereau, B.; Jerbi, K. & Baillet, S. (2007), Multiresolution imaging of MEG cortical sources using an explicit piecewise model, Neuroimage, 38, 439–451

Applications of MEG and EEG source imaging
Inter-regional brain connectivity, fast processes in visual system.

Selected publications:
Cottereau, B.; Lorenceau, J.; Gramfort, A.; Clerc, M.; Thirion, B. & Baillet, S. (2011), Phase delays within visual cortex shape the response to steady-state visual stimulation, Neuroimage, 54, 1919–1929
Jerbi, K.; Lachaux, J.; NDiaye, K.; Pantazis, D.; Leahy, R.; Garnero, L. & Baillet, S. (2007), Coherent Neural Representation of Hand Speed in Humans Revealed by MEG Imaging, Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 104, 7676–7681

Advanced methods for the characterization of dynamics of cortical current flows
Optical flow techniques adapted to arbitrary surface manifolds; Helmoltz-Hodge decompositions.

Selected publications:
Lefèvre, J. & Baillet, S. (2008), Optical flow and advection on 2-Riemannian manifolds: a common framework., IEEE Trans Pattern Anal Mach Intell, 30, 1081–1092
Lefevre, J. & Baillet, S. (2009), Optical flow approaches to the identification of brain dynamics. Hum Brain Mapp, 30, 1887–1897
Khan S., Lefevre J., Ammari H., Baillet S., Feature detection and tracking in optical flow on non-flat manifolds, Pattern Recognition Letters, 32(15), 2047–2052

Time-resolved imaging of resting-state brain activity
Investigate multiscale dynamics of the resting-brain.

Real-time functional brain imaging with MEG
Provide sensory feedback to subjects based on real-time, ongoing brain activity in target brain areas.
Selected publication:
Sudre, G.; Parkkonen, L.; Bock, E.; Baillet, S.; Wang, W. & Weber, D. J. (2011), rtMEG: a real-time software interface for magnetoencephalography, Comput Intell Neurosci, 327953

Anatomical brain registration
Full 3D registration of brain surface and volumes constrained to the individual sulcal inprints.
Selected publication: Auzias, G.; Colliot, O.; Glaunès, J. A.; Perrot, M.; Mangin, J.-F.; Trouvé, A. & Baillet, S. (2011), Diffeomorphic brain registration under exhaustive sulcal constraints, IEEE Trans Med Imaging, 30, 1214–1227

Collaborative work
Attentional processes, language development, eye-hand coordination, etc.

Selected publications:
Dehaene-Lambertz, G. & Baillet, S. (1998), A phonological representation in the infant brain. Neuroreport, 9, 1885–1888
Sergent, C.; Baillet, S. & Dehaene, S. (2005), Timing of the brain events underlying access to consciousness during the attentional blink, Nature Neuroscience, 8, 1391–1400
DelCul, A.; Baillet, S. & Dehaene, S. (2007), Brain dynamics underlying the non-linear threshold for access to consciousness, PLoS Biology, 5
Senot, P.; Baillet, S.; Renault, B. & Berthoz, (2008), Cortical dynamics of anticipatory mechanisms in interception: a neuromagnetic study, J Cogn Neurosci, 20, 1827–1838
Bristow, D.; Dehaene-Lambertz, G.; Mattout, J.; Soares, C.; Gliga, T.; Baillet, S. & Mangin, J.-F. (2009), Hearing faces: how the infant brain matches the face it sees with the speech it hears. J Cogn Neurosci, 21, 905–921

Development and distribution of Brainstorm, a free, open-source software application for EEG/MEG data analysis and source imaging.

Selected publications:
Baillet, S.; Friston, K. & Oostenveld, R. (2011), Academic software applications for electromagnetic brain mapping using MEG and EEG. Comput Intell Neurosci, 972050
Tadel, F.; Baillet, S.; Mosher, J. C.; Pantazis, D. & Leahy, R. M. (2011), Brainstorm: a user-friendly application for MEG/EEG analysis. Comput Intell Neurosci, 879716


Publication lists on PubMed and Google Scholar

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