Newsroom

For media enquiries or more information about research at the Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health, please contact Emily Wight, Communications Manager.

To keep in touch with the Centre and up-to-date on our research, follow us on Twitter or subscribe to Brain Matters, our monthly e-newsletter.

Dr. Judy Illes
Neuroethics Canada awarded funds to develop strategy for evaluating new treatment options for pediatric epilepsy Sep 26, 2018

A team led by Neuroethics Canada's Dr. Judy Illes (pictured) and Dr. Patrick McDonald will explore ethical issues confronting families and clinicians when considering new treatment options for drug-resistant epilepsy in children.

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Dr. Brianne Kent in the lab at the Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health.
UBC postdoc takes Harvard Medical School appointment to study sleep and Alzheimer’s disease Sep 25, 2018

Pictured: Dr. Brianne Kent. Image credit: Paul Joseph/UBC.

As anyone who has ever lain awake in the dark hours after going to bed will attest, sleep is complicated and a lack of it can be disruptive to every aspect of one’s life. Deep sleep is important for a number of brain functions, and essential in clearing the brain of toxic proteins such as beta-amyloid, which can accumulate in the brain over the course of the day. Beta-amyloid proteins contribute to the plaques that form in the brain in disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease.

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Renee Fleming (left), American opera singer and soprano, visited the Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health on September 19 and is pictured with Dr. Jon Stoessl (centre) and Dr. Vesna Sossi (right).
Member news: September 2018 Sep 24, 2018

Pictured: Renée Fleming (left), American opera singer and soprano, visited the Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health on September 19; she enjoyed meeting several members of our research community, including Dr. Jon Stoessl (centre) and Dr. Vesna Sossi (right). For information on Ms. Fleming's interest in brain research, visit her website.

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Hockey player on the bench.
New research shows athletes may be returning to the game too soon after concussion Sep 4, 2018

Detailed scans of University of British Columbia hockey players who had suffered concussions found that the protective fatty tissue surrounding brain cell fibers was loosened two weeks after the injury—even though the athletes felt fine and were deemed ready to return to the ice.

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Members of the EMBED team chatting informally in Shanghai.
EMBED project using digital tools to assist depression diagnosis and care Aug 30, 2018

Can technology help solve the global burden of mental illness? A five-year project, jointly funded by Canadian Institutes for Health Research and National Natural Science Foundation of China, has brought international researchers, led in Canada by Dr. Raymond Lam, together to study the effectiveness of digital technologies for depression in community mental health centres across Shanghai, China.

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Researcher works at fume hood, wears headphones.
Member news: August 2018 Aug 28, 2018

Dr. Matilde Balbi (PI: Dr. Tim Murphy), Dr. Katharina Held (PI: Dr. Yu Tian Wang), Samrat Thouta (PI: Dr. Terry Snutch) recieved Research Trainee Awards from the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research (MSFHR). 

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Jennifer Campbell.
GPN emphasizes wellbeing, works to improve graduate student experience Aug 27, 2018

The 2017/18 academic year saw major changes to the Graduate Program in Neuroscience (GPN), from the appointment of Dr. Liisa Galea as Graduate Program Director in July 2017, to the hiring of Jennifer Campbell (pictured above) as Graduate Program Coordinator in March 2018.

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Dr. Matthew Farrer at the University of British Columbia.
Genetic model offers elegant tool for testing Parkinson's disease therapies Aug 21, 2018

Pictured: Dr. Matthew Farrer. Image credit: Paul Joseph/UBC.

For the past decade, Parkinson’s disease researchers have relied on the experimental equivalent of using a sledgehammer to tune a guitar to test new therapies for the disease. This may be a reason clinical trials of promising neuroprotective drugs fail. But, in new research published today in Nature Parkinson’s Disease, researchers at the Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health (DMCBH) may have found the ideal tool for the job.

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Figure showing neurons with and without connection points.
Essential 'sugar' for brain communication: a new therapeutic path for autism, schizophrenia Aug 9, 2018

Pictured: wild-type and model neurons showing connection points. When the glycan associated with neurexin is absent fewer connection points exist, impairing communication within the brain. 

For twenty years, researchers thought they knew everything there was to know about the composition of neurexin, a protein that connects neurons and is essential for communication within the brain. Neurexin is a key building block of synapses, the specialized sites where neurons connect and signal via chemical messengers.  

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