Basic Neuroscience Research

Basic neuroscience research is done under the guidance of Dr. Munyao Nzau at the Ottawa Health Research Institute and Neuroscience Institute, in collaboration with Dr. A . Hakim and C. Thomson.

Dr. Nzau’s laboratory uses in vitro and animal models to study:

  1. Mechanisms of Cerebrovascular/ Neurovascular unit injury secondary to traumatic brain injury, intracerebral bleed, hypoxia-ischemic injury of prematurity, and sub arrachnoid hemorrhage.
  2. Pathophysiology of cerebral microvascular disease and associated white matter injury.
  3. Functional and structural remodeling in eloquent brain (motor and sensory cortex) after trauma, ischemia and surgery induced injury.
  4. Mechanisms of endogenous neurovascular unit protection, recovery and regeneration.

Current Research Activities

Implementation of a Concussion Research Project (CRP) Clinic at CHEO

The overall purpose of this study is to optimize the assessment, management and follow-up for children who remain symptomatic three months following a sport related head injury through a collaborative, multidisciplinary approach to care.

Helmet Research

In collaboration with the Neurotrauma Impact Science Laboratory at the University of Ottawa, various helmets are tested to replicate the forces transmitted to the head. The first study looked at helmets worn by children 7 years and under while tobogganing. The second study analyzed children speed skating helmets and compared them with other available helmets.

Research Team

Gail Macartney (Nurse Practitioner and CRP coordinator)
Peter Anderson (Neuropsychologist)
Nick Barrowman (Statistician)
Christine Lamontagne (Anesthesiologist and Chronic Pain Specialist)
Blaine Hoshizaki (Director of the University of Ottawa Neurotrauma Impact Science Lab)
Philippe Rousseau (PhD student at the NISL)
Andrew Post (PhD student at the NISL)

CHEO Research Institute Contact Information


Dr. Michael Vassilyadi
401 Smyth Road
Ottawa, ON K1H 8L1
(613) 738-3985