Funding: New Frontiers in Research Fund competition results announced

Researchers from the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry received nearly $500,000 in funding through the New Frontiers in Research Fund (NFRF)’s 2020 Exploration Competition, administered on behalf of Canada’s three federal research granting agencies.

Justin Hicks, PhD, Assistant Professor of Medical Biophysics, along with Shehzad Ali, PhD, Associate Professor of Epidemiology and Biostatistics and Leonard Luyt, PhD, Associate Professor of Oncology, were awarded $249,900. Their research, conducted at the Lawson Health Research Institute, will assess barriers to access among rural and remote Canadian communities to nuclear molecular imaging technology for diagnosis and study of dementia.

After examining the sociodemographic and health system factors limiting access to PET– positron emission tomography – the study will explore how to adapt single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) technology for this purpose, which would be more cost effective and accessible for these communities.

Dr. Jorge Burneo, Professor of Clinical and Neurological Science and Epidemiology and Biostatistics, is taking part in a study led by Kibret Mequanint, PhD, from Western University’s Faculty of Engineering. The NFRF awarded $250,000 in support of their project, which will investigate a novel way to administer anti-epilepsy drugs with a single, once-a-day capsule.

Across Canada, 117 interdisciplinary projects were funded through the NFRF Exploration Competition.