Centre members receive CIHR funding to further brain health research

Dr. Brian MacVicar in his lab

The Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR) has announced its latest grants, and 14 members of the Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health are among the awardees.

Brian MacVicar, Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Co-Director of the Centre received the largest grant in the Faculty of Medicine from CIHR’s latest round of awards, with a Foundation Grant of $3.3 million over seven years. Dr. MacVicar’s lab will explore neuron-glia interactions in brain disease.

Kurt Haas, Associate Professor in the Department of Cellular & Physiological Sciences, also received considerable funding, with $3.2 million over seven years to explore neural circuit dynamics and identify the origins or neurodevelopmental disorders.

In addition, Rebecca Todd, Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology, received CIHR’s New Investigator award for her project, The influence of neurogenetics and stressful experience on emotionally-biased attention and learning.

Grant recipients were chosen through a rigorous peer-review process.

Foundation Grant recipients

CIHR’s Foundation Grant provides long-term support for the pursuit of innovative, high-impact research programs. Members of the Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health received more than $8.6 million in Foundation Grant funding to support research over the next seven years.

  • Pieter Cullis: Lipid nanomedicines for health and disease.
  • Kurt Haas: Imaging neural circuit dynamics in the awake developing brain: Identifying origins of neurodevelopmental disorders.
  • Brian MacVicar: Neuron-Glia interactions in brain disease.

Project Grant recipients

Project Grants support research projects with a defined endpoint, allowing researchers to pursue innovative, high-risk research questions with potential to improve health outcomes in Canada. Centre members received over $7.4 million in Project Grants.

  • Douglas Allan: Characterization of the genes and gene regulatory mechanisms that control motor neuron stability and neurotransmission in a Drosophila model.
  • Shernaz Bamji: The Palmitoyl Acyl Transferase, DHHC5, in Neural Circuit Development and Function.
  • Lara Boyd: The Influence of Acute Bouts of Aerobic Exercise on Neuroplasticity and Motor Learning after Stroke.
  • Liisa Galea: The aging maternal brain: implications for estrogen therapy on cognitive health and dementia risk.
  • Michael Kobor: Epigenetic Signatures of Successful Aging.
  • Teresa Liu-Ambrose: One size does not fit all: Tailoring exercise prescription for brain health based on BDNF polymorphism.
  • Robert Molday: Molecular Mechanisms and Therapeutic Approaches to Stargardt Macular Degeneration.
  • Jason Snyder: Adult neurogenesis and delay-based decision making.
  • Yu Tian Wang: Developing novel GluN2A-containing NMDAR-based stroke therapies.
  • Catharine Winstanley: Neuroinflammation at the nexus of stimulant addiction, impulsivity and traumatic brain injury.

For more information on CIHR grant programs and these recent funding decisions, visit the CIHR website