nervous system

Investigating the Role of MicroRNAs on Granule Cell Development during Mouse Cerebellar Development

The cerebellum is a complex region of our brain involved in the coordination of our movements and cognition. Evidence shows that cerebellum is involved in several brain disorders such as ataxia (inability to move properly), autism, and medulloblastoma (the most prevalent brain tumor in children). The cerebellum is made of different cell types. Among them, the most numerous cell type, the granule cells, contribute to many crucial cerebellar functions. Indeed, an uncontrolled division of granule cells results in the most common form of pediatric brain tumor, the medulloblastoma.

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2019

Knowledge translation for a new understanding of sexual pain in endometriosis

Co-leads:

  • Paul Yong
    University of British Columbia
  • Jessica Sutherland
    BC Women's Hospital + Health Centre

Trainee:

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2018

Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy (SUDEP): A new model for mechanistic and therapeutic investigation

Epilepsy is one of the most common brain disorders. The condition is characterized by uncoordinated brain electrical activity and recurrent seizures. Epilepsy patients may die unexpectedly with unknown cause, a phenomenon termed “sudden unexpected death in epilepsy” (SUDEP). SUDEP accounts for about 50% of deaths in individuals suffering from drug-resistant epilepsy in which severe seizures are followed by alterations in respiratory and cardiac functions.

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2018

High-throughput automated mouse model to pilot translational brain stimulation during recovery from stroke

There are 62,000 strokes in Canada each year–one every nine minutes–and 405,000 Canadians are living with the effects of stroke. Stroke rehabilitation is a large field with a need for further research and treatment development.

Dr. Balbi will investigate brain stimulation and movement-based stroke rehabilitation by studying brain activity and forelimb movement in mice stroke models.

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2018

Impact of treatment for neurogenic bladder dysfunction on autonomic dysreflexia and cerebral blood flow in SCI individuals

Spinal cord injury (SCI) resulting from traumatic accidents is one of the most debilitating chronic conditions. In addition to the toll on quality of life, lifetime health care expenditures for these patients are among the most expensive of any medical condition, since many injuries occur in young patients who live with SCI for decades. SCI also comes with steep indirect costs, including morbidity due to chronic complications. 

Primary Investigator: 
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Year: 
2017

Genetic etiology of progressive multiple sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is the most common cause of neurological disability in young adults, other than trauma, with over two million people affected worldwide. Approximately 100,000 Canadians have MS, a rate that is nine times higher than the global average. MS symptoms vary widely and may affect vision, hearing, cognition, balance, and movement; negatively affecting many aspects of quality of life. To date, there is no cure or prevention for MS.

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2017

Breaking the link between obstructive sleep apnea and cardiovascular disease using a translational experimental approach

Previous research by Dr. Foster has illustrated that angiotensin receptor blockade can abolish the blood pressure response to intermittent hypoxia (IH), reduce oxidative stress and increase nitric oxide bioavailability. In addition, recent work suggests heightened peripheral neurovascular transduction in response to baroreflex activation.

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2017

Using aerobic exercise to enhance motor learning and cortical excitability after stroke

The severity of motor impairments due to stroke vary markedly in different people, and with therapy, a degree of recovery is possible. Understanding the underlying neural mechanisms supporting motor recovery from stroke would inform development of more effective therapies.

Primary Investigator: 
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Year: 
2015

Characterization of the acute morphological response of brain microglia to decreased oxygen levels and study of the mechanisms underlying microglial dynamic motility

This work will investigate three aspects of the role that the immune cells of the brain (microglia) play in stroke — a disease affecting more than 50,000 Canadians every year. First, it will characterize the acute reaction of microglia to low oxygen levels. Second, it will analyze the molecular mechanism by which microglia extend filopodia, thin actin-rich protrusions essential for their role in sensing brain damage.

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2015

Cardiac responses to spinal cord injury and exercise

The prognosis for the 2.5 million North Americans living with spinal cord injury (SCI) is poor. These wheelchair bound individuals are subjected to a number of physical, social, and environmental barriers that compound paralysis and limit daily physical activity. The five-fold increase in risk for heart disease reduces life-expectancy and costs the North American healthcare system $3 billion per annum.

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2014
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