Robert Viger, PhD, is a researcher and regular member of the Centre de recherche du CHU de Québec-Laval University, and Professor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproduction at the Laval University School of Medicine. At Laval University, Professor Viger has also been Scientific Director of the Centre de recherche en reproduction, développement et santé intergénérationnelle (CRDSI), since 2014. His laboratory is presently investigating the molecular and genetic pathways involved in early gonadal differentiation, the regulation of gonad-specific gene expression, and the control of gonadal physiology. His research has been continuously funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), since 1998. From 2002 to 2012, he held the Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Reproduction and Sex Development.

Understanding, preventing, and treating problems related to reproductive health

Reproductive dysfunction is a common medical condition. Problems range from differences in the sex determination and differentiation pathways to male and female infertility. Research in these areas is therefore essential to better understand, diagnose, treat, and hopefully prevent these problems that can be devastating for many individuals and couples. His laboratory seeks to understand the molecular and genetic mechanisms involved in human and animal reproduction in both health and disease. His goal is to provide the necessary groundwork for developing novel therapies that can eventually be used to improve reproductive health, and therefore the quality of life of those affected.

His laboratory is specifically interested in defining the transcriptional regulatory pathways that are involved in establishing mammalian sex determination (i.e., the formation of a testis or an ovary) and sex differentiation (i.e., the development of internal and external genitalia, and therefore the male or female phenotype). Over the past several years, his research has also brought new insights into our understanding of several pathologies that affect women’s health such as breast cancer, endometriosis, and polycystic ovary syndrome.

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Silversides DW, Viger RS

What determines maleness? Sex determination, testis formation and the development of the male phenotype

Book Chapter

B, Robaire; P, Chan (Ed.): Handbook of Andrology, pp. 16-1-16-4, Lawrence, KS, American Society of Andrology, 2010.

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Taniguchi H, Komiyama J, Viger RS, Okuda K

The expression of the nuclear receptors NR5A1 and NR5A2 and transcription factor GATA6 correlates with steroidogenic gene expression in the bovine corpus luteum.

Journal Article

Mol Reprod Dev, 76 (9), pp. 873-80, 2009, ISSN: 1040-452X.

Abstract | Links:

Bouchard MF, Taniguchi H, Viger RS

The effect of human GATA4 gene mutations on the activity of target gonadal promoters.

Journal Article

J Mol Endocrinol, 42 (2), pp. 149-60, 2009, ISSN: 0952-5041.

Abstract | Links:

Mazaud Guittot S, Bouchard MF, Robert-Grenon JP, Robert C, Goodyer CG, Silversides DW, Viger RS

Conserved usage of alternative 5' untranslated exons of the GATA4 gene.

Journal Article

PLoS ONE, 4 (12), pp. e8454, 2009.

Abstract | Links:

Viger RS, Guittot SM, Anttonen M, Wilson DB, Heikinheimo M

Role of the GATA family of transcription factors in endocrine development, function, and disease.

Journal Article

Mol Endocrinol, 22 (4), pp. 781-98, 2008, ISSN: 0888-8809.

Abstract | Links:

Pilon N, Raiwet D, Viger RS, Silversides DW

Novel pre- and post-gastrulation expression of Gata4 within cells of the inner cell mass and migratory neural crest cells.

Journal Article

Dev Dyn, 237 (4), pp. 1133-43, 2008, ISSN: 1058-8388.

Abstract | Links:

Miyamoto Y, Taniguchi H, Hamel F, Silversides DW, Viger RS

A GATA4/WT1 cooperation regulates transcription of genes required for mammalian sex determination and differentiation.

Journal Article

BMC Mol Biol, 9 , pp. 44, 2008.

Abstract | Links:

Mazaud Guittot S, Tétu A, Legault E, Pilon N, Silversides DW, Viger RS

The proximal Gata4 promoter directs reporter gene expression to sertoli cells during mouse gonadal development.

Journal Article

Biol Reprod, 76 (1), pp. 85-95, 2007, ISSN: 0006-3363.

Abstract | Links:

Robert NM, Miyamoto Y, Taniguchi H, Viger RS

LRH-1/NR5A2 cooperates with GATA factors to regulate inhibin alpha-subunit promoter activity.

Journal Article

Mol Cell Endocrinol, 257-258 , pp. 65-74, 2006, ISSN: 0303-7207.

Abstract | Links:

Dufresne J, St-Pierre N, Viger RS, Hermo L, Cyr DG

Characterization of a novel rat epididymal cell line to study epididymal function.

Journal Article

Endocrinology, 146 (11), pp. 4710-20, 2005, ISSN: 0013-7227.

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Active projects

  • Centre de recherche du CHU de Québec - Université Laval, Subvention, Centre hospitalier universitaire de Québec - Université Laval, Centres de recherche affiliés, from 2017-01-01 to 2099-12-31
  • Centre de recherche en reproduction, développement et santé intergénérationnelle, Subvention, Institutionnel - BDR, BDR - Centres de recherche reconnus, from 1996-06-01 to 2021-02-02
  • Réseau Québécois en Reproduction (RQR), Subvention, Fonds de recherche du Québec - Nature et technologies, Regroupements stratégiques NT, from 2017-04-01 to 2023-03-31
  • Sex, hormones, and fertility: elucidating the molecular mechanism of action of transcription factor GATA4 in reproductive function, Subvention, Instituts de recherche en santé du Canada, Subvention Projet, from 2019-10-01 to 2024-09-30

Recently finished projects

  • Nouvelles cibles moléculaires dans le but d'améliorer la fonction ovarienne chez la vache laitière, Subvention, Fonds de recherche du Québec - Nature et technologies, Projet de recherche en équipe, from 2017-04-01 to 2020-03-31
Data provided by the Université Laval research projects registery