F Labrie

Laval University, Québec, Quebec, Canada

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Publications (731)2824.43 Total impact

  • F Labrie, C Labrie
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    ABSTRACT: Menopause has been chosen by evolution as the convergence of three factors, namely cessation of ovarian function (reproduction and estrogen secretion), high circulating dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), and intracrine enzymes able to convert DHEA into active sex steroids in peripheral tissues. The arrest of estrogen secretion by the ovaries at menopause causes a decrease of circulating estradiol below the threshold of biological activity, thus eliminating stimulation of the endometrium and risk of endometrial cancer. As much as the arrest of secretion of estradiol by the ovaries is essential to protect the uterus, it is of major importance that sex steroids continue to be made available in most other tissues which need estrogens and/or androgens for their normal functioning. Evolution, through 500 million years, has progressively provided the peripheral tissues with the enzymes able to make androgens and estrogens while high levels of DHEA, the precursor of all sex steroids, have appeared much later with the primates approximately 20 million years ago. All elements were thus in place for the functioning of intracrinology or the cell-specific formation of estrogens and androgens in peripheral tissues from the inactive precursor DHEA, with no significant release of active sex steroids in the circulation, thus eliminating the risks of adverse effects in the other tissues, especially the uterus. The presence of subthreshold levels of circulating estradiol combined with the formation of sex steroids from DHEA in specific peripheral tissues (intracrinology) makes menopause a positive characteristic supporting many years of good-quality postmenopausal life, useful for taking care of children and grandchildren. DHEA, however, decreases with age and is present at very different concentrations between different women, with the consequence that approximately 75% of postmenopausal women have too low circulating DHEA levels and suffer from symptoms/signs of hormone deficiency.
    Climacteric 11/2012; · 1.96 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A proteomic analysis of stratum corneum (SC) samples of normal healthy skin revealed the presence of more than 70 proteins by 2D electrophoresis. The majority of these proteins to our knowledge have not yet been described in normal SC. We analysed by Western blot the levels of 25 proteins in the SC taken from postmenopausal and dry skin compared with young and normal skin, respectively. In postmenopausal skin, there was a significantly increased amount of heat shock protein 27, plakoglobin and desmoglein 1, whereas transglutaminase 3, apolipoprotein D and acid ceramidase levels were significantly reduced compared with the SC of young skin. We confirmed corneodesmosin as a marker of dry skin. In addition, we showed for the first time that the levels of both phosphatidylethanolamine-binding protein 1 and annexin A2 were significantly increased in the SC of dry skin compared with the SC of normal skin. These results suggest that a proteomic analysis of the SC obtained using a non-invasive varnish stripping method is an attractive alternative to invasive methods to better characterize changes in the physiology of ageing and dry skin.
    Experimental Dermatology 03/2012; 21(3):205-10. · 3.58 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To examine the effect of intravaginal dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) on pain at sexual activity (dyspareunia) identified as the most bothersome symptom of vaginal atrophy in postmenopausal women at both screening and day 1. This prospective, randomized, double-blind and placebo-controlled phase III clinical trial studied the effect of prasterone (DHEA) applied locally in the vagina on the severity of dyspareunia in 114 postmenopausal women who had identified dyspareunia as their most bothersome symptom of vaginal atrophy, while meeting the criteria for superficial cells ≤ 5% and pH > 5.0 at both screening and day 1. At the standard duration of 12 weeks of treatment, increasing doses of 0.25%, 0.5% and 1.0% DHEA decreased the percentage of parabasal cells by 48.6  ±  6.78%, 42.4  ±  7.36% and 54.9  ±  6.60% (p < 0.0001 vs. placebo for all) with no change with placebo (p = 0.769). The effects on superficial cells and pH were also highly significant compared to placebo at all DHEA doses. The severity score of pain at sexual activity decreased by 0.5, 1.4, 1.6 and 1.4 units in the placebo and 0.25%, 0.5% and 1.0% DHEA groups, respectively, with the p value of differences from placebo ranging from 0.0017 to < 0.0001. Intravaginal DHEA, through local estrogen and androgen formation, causes a rapid and highly efficient effect on pain at sexual activity without systemic exposure of the other tissues, thus avoiding the recently reported systemic effects of estrogens.
    Climacteric 01/2011; 14(2):282-8. · 1.96 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: SCH 206272, a neurokinin 1, 2, and 3 receptor antagonist, administered to beagle dogs results in testicular toxicity. Therefore, a series of experiments were conducted to determine whether this observed toxicity was associated with changes in reproductive hormones and hypothalamic gonadotrophin releasing hormone (GnRH) levels. Male beagle dogs were administered 30 mg/kg SCH 206272 for up to 7 days. Blood samples were collected at the end of the dosing period for reproductive hormone analysis. Male reproductive organs were stained with hematoxylin and eosin and the hypothalamus was stained for GnRH. Intact male dogs exhibited SCH 206272-related decreases in pulsatility and magnitude of luteinizing hormone (LH) and testosterone, which were associated with seminiferous tubule degeneration, oligospermia, and epithelial atrophy in the prostate gland. Neutered dogs also exhibited SCH 206272-related decreases in LH and FSH. In a subsequent reversibility study, intact male dogs exhibited decreased LH, testosterone, and FSH, which exhibited recovery by 2 weeks post-dosing; however, seminiferous tubule degeneration and oligospermia did not exhibit recovery by 2 weeks post-dosing. Dogs administered SCH 206272 also exhibited an increase in mean number of GnRH-containing neurons in the hypothalamus and an increase in GnRH mRNA/neuron, which exhibited recovery by 2 weeks post-dosing. SCH 206272-dosed dogs exhibited rapid decreases in reproductive hormones and subsequent testicular pathology. Collectively, these changes in hormone levels suggest that the observed SCH 206272-related reproductive tract findings are the result of alterations in hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal function. However, a direct effect on the testes cannot be definitively ruled out.
    Birth Defects Research Part B Developmental and Reproductive Toxicology 11/2010; 89(6):517-25. · 1.97 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Although low dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) is suspected to have a role in skin ageing, little information is available on the mechanisms potentially involved. To obtain information on androgen receptor (AR) and procollagen expression in ageing skin during DHEA treatment. A placebo-controlled, randomized, prospective study was performed with 75 postmenopausal women aged 60-65 years. The women were treated twice daily for 13 weeks with 3·0 mL of placebo or 0·1%, 0·3%, 1% or 2% DHEA cream applied on the face, arms, back of hands, upper chest and right thigh where 2-mm biopsies were collected before and after treatment. Although the overall structure of the epidermis was not significantly affected at the light microscopy level, AR expression examined by immunocytochemistry was markedly increased by DHEA treatment. In the dermis, the expression levels of procollagen 1 and 3 mRNA estimated by in situ hybridization were increased by DHEA treatment. In addition, the expression of heat shock protein (HSP) 47, a molecule believed to have chaperone-like functions potentially affecting procollagen biosynthesis, was also found by immunocytochemistry evaluation to be increased, especially at the two highest DHEA doses. These data suggest the possibility that topical DHEA could be used as an efficient and physiological antiageing skin agent.
    British Journal of Dermatology 11/2010; 163(5):968-76. · 3.76 Impact Factor
  • Samson M, F. Labrie, V. Luu-The
    Hormone molecular biology and clinical investigation 01/2010; 1:67-72.
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    ABSTRACT: The sex steroids, estrogens, progesterone, and androgens, all play a role in mammary development and function. To precisely identify the sites of action of these steroids, we studied the localization of the estrogen receptor alpha (ERalpha) and ERbeta, the progesterone receptor A (PRA) and PRB, and androgen receptors (AR) in the normal human mammary gland. Immunocytochemical localization of ERalpha, ERbeta, PRA, PRB, and AR was performed with reduction mammoplasty specimens from premenopausal women. ERalpha, PRA, PRB, and AR were localized mostly to the inner layer of epithelial cells lining acini and intralobular ducts, as well as to myoepithelial cells scattered in the external layer of interlobular ducts. AR was also found in some stromal cells. ERbeta staining was more widespread, resulting in epithelial and myoepithelial cells being labeled in acini and ducts as well as stromal cells. These results suggest that all sex steroids can directly act on epithelial cells to modulate development and function of the human mammary gland. Estrogens and androgens can also indirectly influence epithelial cell activity by an action on stromal cells.
    Journal of Histochemistry and Cytochemistry 12/2009; 58(6):509-15. · 2.26 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: It is known that the steroid sulfatase (STS) and the estrogen sulfotransferase (EST1E1) are commonly expressed in human breast carcinomas. STS and EST1E1 combined action could maintain the equilibrium between sulfated (inactive) and unconjugated (active) estrogens, which might have effects on development of hormone dependent breast cancer.We studied the expression of the STS and EST1E1 in 88 breast carcinomas and 57 adjacent non-malignant tissues by immunohistochemistry. The results were correlated with the tumor expression of estrogen receptor α (ER-α) and β (ER-β), progesterone receptor A (PR-A) and B (PR-B) and the proliferation marker CDC47, the tumoral type and stage and the age at surgery.STS expression was higher in carcinoma specimens than in adjacent normal tissues, although not to a significant level (p = 0.064) and it was positively associated with CDC47 expression (p < 0.05). These observations support the hypothesis that STS is overexpressed in breast cancer and associated with a worse prognosis.EST1E1 was observed for the first time in the nuclei of epithelial and tumoral cells. Tumor expression of EST1E1 was positively correlated with ER-β (p < 0.01) and PR-B (p < 0.05), two steroid receptors already associated with an improve prognosis for breast cancer.Controlling the STS overexpression in carcinomas could be a way to inhibit cancer growth. The significance of the association between EST1E1 and ER-β or PR-B should be further studied since these two receptors are transcription activators and may regulate the expression of protective enzymes like EST1E1.
    Breast cancer 01/2009; 3:9-21.
  • Maturitas 01/2009; 63. · 2.84 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Summary— The effect of further adrenal androgen blockade with aminoglutethimide (AG) plus low dose hydrocortisone (HC) was studied in 119 patients with clinical stage D2 prostate cancer who previously progressed after standard hormone therapy and were under progression while receiving the combination therapy with Flutamide and castration. Using the objective criteria of the US NPCP, 1 complete, 2 partial and 14 stable responses were obtained for a total response rate of 14.3%, while 102 patients continued to progress. The 50% probability of survival was 21.0 months for the responders and 9.2 months for the non-responders. The present data indicate that further androgen blockade with AG + low dose HC is well tolerated and can be of benefit to a significant proportion of patients in progression at a very late stage of the disease.
    BJU International 11/2008; 63(6):634 - 638. · 3.05 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Estrogens play an important role in the development and progression of breast cancer. 17beta-Hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (17beta-HSD) type 2 and type 5 are involved in sex steroid metabolism. 17beta-HSD type 2 converts estradiol to estrone while 17beta-HSD type 5 converts androstenedione to testosterone. Using immunocytochemistry, we have studied the expression of 17beta-HSD type 2 and type 5 in 50 specimens of breast carcinoma and adjacent non-malignant tissues. The results were correlated with the estrogen receptor alpha (ERalpha) and beta (ERbeta), progesterone receptor A (PRA) and B (PRB), androgen receptor and CDC47 and with the tumor stage, tumor size, nodal status and menopausal status. 17beta-HSD type 2 was expressed in 20% and 17beta-HSD type 5 in 56% of breast cancer specimens. In adjacent normal tissues, both enzymes were highly expressed in almost all the patients. No significant association could be found between the expression of 17beta-HSD type 2 and 17beta-HSD type 5 and between the expression of each enzyme and the clinicopathological parameters studied. The decrease in 17beta-HSD type 2 and 17beta-HSD type 5 expressions in breast cancer may play a predominant role in the development and/or progression of the cancer by modifying the intratumoral levels of estrogens and androgens.
    The Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 11/2008; 112(4-5):194-200. · 3.98 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The objective of this study was to explore, for the first time, the changes in the pangenomic profile induced in human skin in women treated with dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) applied locally. Sixty postmenopausal women participated in this phase II prospective, randomized, double-blind and placebo-controlled study. Women were randomized to the twice daily local application of 0% (placebo), 0.3%, 1% or 2% DHEA cream. Changes in the pangenomic expression profile were studied using Affymetrix Genechips. Significant changes (p<0.05) in sixty-six DHEA-responsive probe sets corresponding to 52 well-characterized genes and 9 unknown gene sequences were identified. A dose-dependent increase in the expression of several members of the collagen family was observed, namely COL1, COL3 and COL5 as well as the concomitant modulation of SPARC, a gene required for the normal deposition and maturation of collagen fibrils in the dermis. Several genes involved in the proliferation and differentiation of keratinocytes were also modulated. In addition, topical DHEA reduced the expression of genes associated with the terminal differentiation and cornification of keratinocytes. Our results strongly suggest the possibility that DHEA could exert an anti-aging effect in the skin through stimulation of collagen biosynthesis, improved structural organization of the dermis while modulating keratinocyte metabolism.
    The Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 11/2008; 112(4-5):186-93. · 3.98 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We present a case report of a patient with prostate cancer who failed to demonstrate consistent testosterone suppression to castration levels and incomplete suppression of serum prostate-specific antigen, although treated with gonadotropin releasing hormone agonists for 48 months. Serum dehydroepiandrosterone, dehydroepiandrosterone sulphate, as well as the androgen metabolite, androsterone glucuronide, were elevated compared to the other patients. The present data suggest that those prostate cancer patients who have even marginally elevated adrenal androgens may especially benefit from combined androgen blockade.
    Prostate cancer and prostatic diseases 07/2008; 12(1):100-3. · 2.10 Impact Factor
  • 05/2008: pages 178 - 209; , ISBN: 9780470719725
  • Fernand Labrie, Michael Koutsilieris
    The Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 03/2008; 108(3-5):179. · 3.98 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Despite that glucocorticoids (GCs), acting through the glucocorticoid receptor (GR) exert a pivotal role in skin physiopathology, specific genes regulated by GR in this tissue are largely unknown. We have used a transgenic mouse model overexpressing GR in epidermal basal cells and outer root sheath (ORS) of the hair follicle (HF) under the control of the keratin 5 regulatory sequences (K5-GR mice) to identify GR-regulated genes in mouse skin. We analyzed the transcriptomic profile of adult K5-GR skin as compared to non-transgenic adult mice by using oligonucleotide microarrays and identified 173 genes differentially regulated by GR in this tissue. Our data were further validated by semiquantitative RT-PCR and quantitative real-time PCR. We have identified a large subset of hair keratin intermediate filament (krt) and hair keratin-associated protein (krtap) genes, as well as several hox genes as GC-regulated. Since dysregulation of krt, krtaps and hox genes can cause hair disorders, as it occurs in adult K5-GR mice, our findings strongly suggest a role of GR in HF morphogenesis through the coordinated regulation of these hair-specific genes. In addition, we found that GR repressed several genes related to cell growth, such as the immediate early genes fosb and c-fos, according to the antiproliferative role described for this hormone receptor. By using cultured keratinocytes treated with GR-agonists and -antagonists, we demonstrated that down-regulation of fosb is mediated by GR. Identification of novel GR-regulated genes will help us to better understand the role of GCs as physiological modulators and pharmacological agents.
    The Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 02/2008; 108(1-2):8-16. · 3.98 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), the major steroid precursor of androgens and estrogens produced in peripheral tissues in primates, has been shown to exert chemopreventive effect on the development of carcinogen-induced rat mammary tumors. Since little is known on the effect of DHEA administration on mammary gland physiology and histology, we have studied the effect of long-term administration of DHEA to normal female monkey and rat on mammary gland histology as well as on serum DHEA, DHEA sulphate (DHEA-S), testosterone and estradiol levels. In monkeys, DHEA treatment (2 or 10 mg/(kg b.w.day)) induced a dose-related increase in serum DHEA and DHEA-S (above 20-fold) levels. At the highest dose of DHEA, serum testosterone levels were significantly increased (three- to fourfold), while serum estradiol concentration was not modified. DHEA treatment did not modify the histological characteristics of monkey mammary glands. In the rat, following DHEA administration (10 or 100 mg/(kg b.w.day)), a dose-related marked increase in serum DHEA and DHEA-S was observed. Serum testosterone was also increased in DHEA-treated animals, while no significant changes in serum estradiol levels were detected. As in the monkey, the histology of the female rat mammary gland remained unchanged following long-term treatment with any of the two doses of DHEA.
    The Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 02/2008; 108(1-2):102-8. · 3.98 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To study the bioavailability of dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) administered by the oral and percutaneous routes, three groups of 12 postmenopausal women aged 60-70 years received two capsules of 50mg of DHEA orally before breakfast daily for 14 days or applied 4 g of a 10% DHEA cream or gel at the same time of the day on a 30 cm x 30 cm surface area on the thighs. Detailed serial blood sampling over 24h was performed following 1st and 14th DHEA administration for measurement of DHEA and nine of its metabolites by liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) or gas chromatography mass spectrometry (GC-MS). Serum levels of estrone (E1) and estradiol (E2) did not change following DHEA administration by any of the three formulations, while serum androstenedione (4-dione), testosterone, DHEA sulfate (DHEA-S), E(1)-S, androsterone glucuronide (ADT-G) and 3alpha-androstanediol-G (3alpha-diol-G), increased in all cases, the effect on these parameters being more important after oral than percutaneous administration due to the metabolism of DHEA into these metabolites in the gastrointestinal tract and liver. No qualitative differences in DHEA metabolism are observed between the oral and percutaneous routes of DHEA administration while the levels of all steroids remain on a plateau during the 24h period during chronic percutaneous DHEA administration. The present data show that DHEA is transformed into active androgens and estrogens in peripheral intracrine tissues with no or minimal release of the active steroids E(1), E(2) or testosterone in the circulation. Moreover, DHEA is preferentially transformed into androgens rather than into estrogens. Most importantly, the present data show that changes in serum DHEA following oral or percutaneous DHEA administration are not a valid parameter of DHEA action since the increase in serum DHEA is at least 100% greater than the increase in the formation of active androgens and estrogens and thus much higher than the potential physiological effects.
    The Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 11/2007; 107(1-2):57-69. · 3.98 Impact Factor
  • G Pelletier, S Li, V Luu-The, F Labrie
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    ABSTRACT: It is well documented that oestrogen suppresses food intake by an action at the hypothalamic level. Using in situ hybridisation, we studied the effect of castration (CX) and short-term administration of oestradiol (E2) in CX female mice for three neuropeptides involved in feeding behaviour: two anorexigenic peptides, (i) the pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC)-derived peptide alpha-melanocyte-stimulating hormone and (ii) corticotrophin-releasing hormone (CRH), and the orexigenic peptide, (iii) neuropeptide Y (NPY). POMC-expressing neurones were mostly laterally located in the arcuate nucleus. POMC mRNA expression was decreased following CX and a single injection of E2 induced an increase in mRNA levels at 12- and 24-h time intervals. In the parvocellular area of the paraventricular nucleus, CRH mRNA levels were similarly decreased after CX and completely restored to normal levels at 12 and 24 h following E2 injection. On the other hand, the levels of NPY mRNA expressed in neurones located in the inner zone of the arcuate nucleus were increased by CX and decreased to the levels observed in intact animals by E2 injection (3-24 h). The present data suggest that oestrogen might exert an anorexigenic action by stimulating POMC and CRH mRNA expression and decreasing NPY mRNA expression in the hypothalamus.
    Journal of Neuroendocrinology 07/2007; 19(6):426-31. · 3.33 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The enzyme 11beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 1 (11beta-HSD1) converts the inactive 11-dehydrocorticosterone into the active glucocorticoid corticosterone. There is accumulating evidence indicating widespread expression of 11beta-HSD1 in the brain. However, there is little information about regulation of 11beta-HSD1 expression in this tissue. Using in situ hybridization involving use of 35S-labeled cRNA probe, we have studied the distribution of cells expressing 11beta-HSD1 mRNA in the male mouse forebrain as well as the effects of adrenalectomy (ADX) and acute administration of corticosterone (3 and 24 h) on 11beta-HSD1 mRNA levels. Cells expressing 11beta-HSD1 mRNA were mostly detected in the cerebral cortex, hippocampus, amygdala and medial preoptic area, with the highest expression in the cerebral cortex (retrosplenial granular area) and hippocampus (CA3 and granular layer of the gyrus dentatus). Seven days following ADX, 11beta-HSD mRNA levels were increased by 50% in the gyrus dentatus, by 100% in the CA3 area, and 105% in the cerebral cortex. Administration of corticosterone to ADX mice induced a significant decrease in mRNA, in both the hippocampus and cerebral cortex so that, at the 24 h time interval, the levels were similar to those observed in intact mice. These results clearly indicate that circulating corticosterone is downregulating the expression of 11beta-HSD1 mRNA in the two forebrain areas studied. This downregulation might contribute to maintain low intracellular corticosterone levels in central regions and then prevent the deleterious effects induced by high glucocorticoid levels.
    Neuroscience 04/2007; 145(1):110-5. · 3.12 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

16k Citations
2,824.43 Total Impact Points


  • 1972–2012
    • Laval University
      • • Département de Médecine
      • • Faculté de Médecine
      Québec, Quebec, Canada
  • 2008
    • Shaare Zedek Medical Center
      • Institute of Hormone Research
      Yerushalayim, Jerusalem District, Israel
  • 2006
    • Université de Rouen
      • Microbiology Signals and Microenvironment Lab (LMSM) (EA 4312)
      Mont-Saint-Aignan, Upper Normandy, France
  • 1979–2005
    • Université du Québec
      Québec, Quebec, Canada
  • 1975–2005
    • Centre hospitalier de l'Université de Montréal (CHUM)
      Montréal, Quebec, Canada
  • 1976–2000
    • Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Québec (CHUQ)
      Québec, Quebec, Canada
  • 1999
    • McGill University Health Centre
      Montréal, Quebec, Canada
  • 1996
    • Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam
      • Department of Pathology
      Rotterdam, South Holland, Netherlands
  • 1992–1995
    • The University of Western Ontario
      • Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology
      London, Ontario, Canada
    • Hebrew University of Jerusalem
      Yerushalayim, Jerusalem District, Israel
  • 1994
    • Endocrinology Research Centre
      Moskva, Moscow, Russia
  • 1992–1993
    • Lawson Health Research Institute
      London, Ontario, Canada
  • 1990
    • University of Saskatchewan
      Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada
  • 1988
    • Memorial University of Newfoundland
      St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada
  • 1978
    • New Orleans East Hospital
      New Orleans, Louisiana, United States
    • Duke University Medical Center
      Durham, North Carolina, United States
  • 1975–1976
    • Tulane University
      • Department of Medicine
      New Orleans, Louisiana, United States