BC Mental Health and Addictions Research Institute

2010 News

> November 30, 2010

Dr. Jehannine Austin Receives Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Translational Psychiatric Genetics

austinDr. Jehannine Austin: "The overall objective of my program of research is to use a clinical genetics perspective to inform the development of novel biological and non-biological interventions to improve outcomes for individuals with psychiatric disorders and to support their families."



> August 3, 2010

BCMHARI Researchers Win Mind Foundation Grants

mindThe Mind Foundation of BC (MFBC) Grant Recipient Selection Committee met on June 1, 2010 to review a total of 16 grant applications. Of five grants awarded, four went to BCMHARI Researchers:

Dr. Donna Lang and Dr. Todd Woodward have both received a Young Investigator Award valued at $100,000 over two years. Dr. Lang will study the effects of physical exercise on hippocampal neuroplacticity and cognition in chronic schizophrenia, which is expected to have immediate positive impact on patient health. Dr. Woodward's study will employ fMRI and MEG to investigate task-positive and task-negative brain areas in schizophrenia and healthy controls. The failure of task-negative areas to deactivate during cognitive tasks has been identified as a possible cause of distorted thinking in individuals with schizophrenia.

Dr. Clare Beasley and Dr. Donna Lang have both received one-year research grants valued at $20,000. Dr. Beasley's project aims to study the damaging side effects of currently used typical and atypical antipsychotic drugs. In rat models, oxidative stress markers will be examined in order to define better treatment regimens and to identify potential supplements to reduce harmful effects of antipsychotic medication. Dr. Lang is undertaking a study of the effects of isopropyl alcohol on the brains of rats. Very little is known about the neurotoxicity of this substance which is commonly abused by street people and others as a cheaper substitute for ethanol.