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Marco Prado and Robert Bartha receive $1.3 million grant from Weston Brain Institute

Robarts Research Institute scientists Marco Prado, PhD, and Robart Bartha, PhD, are among the first to receive funding from the Weston Brain Institute, established with $50 million dollars in funding from the W. Garfield Weston Foundation.  

The Weston Brain Institute, announced Thursday, is Canada's largest privately funded national initiative aimed at accelerating breakthrough discoveries for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases of aging, including Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).  The fund will directly support Canada's world-class neuroscience research community and focus on high-risk, high-reward research, using an innovative and flexible fast-track granting model.

Prado and Bartha were awarded $1.3 million to create a method of testing therapeutics on mice using touch screens to better test and quantify behaviour.  They will be collaborating with fellow Robarts scientists Vania Prado, Jane Rylett and Greg Dekaban, as well as University of Guelph scientists Boyer Winters and Elana Choleris, and Stephen Strother of the University of Toronto.

“The Weston Brain Institute has been launched to support innovative research that can help to develop new medicines for neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease. They want to be transformative and make a difference for Canadians. The Weston Brain Institute chose to support this particular area of research because of the societal and health costs of these devastating diseases,” says Prado.  “Our funded research aims to help academic and industry research groups working on new medicines to advance and perhaps predict which drugs can be moved to clinical trials to benefit patients with dementia.”

For more information about the Weston Brain Institute, visit: www.westonbraininstitute.ca