For the second year in a row, the Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health Alzheimer’s Disease Research Competition was held. Below are a list of the successful applicants along with a brief description of their projects. Congratulations to all the winners!

Using Non-Invasive Brain Stimulation to Treat Mild Cognitive Impairment

Research team: Drs. Fidel Vila-Rodriguez (pictured), Haakon Nygaard, Robin Hsiung, Sherri Hayden and Alex Levit

Project description: This pilot study will use repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) to enhance memory and executive functioning in patients with a form of mild cognitive impairment that often progresses to Alzheimer’s disease. The data from this study will help researchers in their ongoing work to develop personalized, targeted treatments for people with mild cognitive impairment.

Understanding the influence of genetics and sex differences in Alzheimer’s Risk

Research team: Drs. Liisa Galea, Annie Ciernia, Cheryl Wellington, Jonathan Epp, Staci Bilbo and Lisa Saksida

Project description: This collaboration includes researchers from UBC, the University of Calgary, Duke University and Western University. Their study will look at the intersection of advancing age, genetics and sex differences in the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.

Searching for the source of oxidative stress in brain cells

Research team: Drs. Brian MacVicar and Haakon Nygaard

Project description: This study will advance previous work from Drs. MacVicar and Nygaard looking at oxidative stress in the brain which is thought to be associated with Alzheimer’s disease. By identifying the source of oxidative stress in brain cells, new therapies can be created to reduce this stress in Alzheimer’s patients.

Tracking the impact of multi-sensory brain stimulation on Alzheimer’s Disease

Research team: Drs. Tim Murphy and Mark Cembrowski

Project description: This project aims to identify patterns of brain activity both at rest and when engaged in memory tasks. The results of this study will offer important evidence for the potential of multi-sensory brain stimulation targeted towards specific regions of the brain, in order to improve memory for Alzheimer’s patients.