Collaborative Research Seed Grant Funding


Congratulations to the interdisciplinary teams who received Collaborative Research Seed Grant Funding, including Dr. Parisa Shooshtari and Dr. Qi Zhang.

Project Title: Uncovering the cell-specific epigenetic causes of gene dysregulation in schizophrenia


  • Parisa Shooshtari, PhD, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
  • Nathalie Bérubé, PhD, Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology

Dr. Shooshtari and Dr. Bérubé will aim to gain insight into Schizophrenia mechanism and its relation to brain cells, through mining publicly available Schizophrenia genetics association data and single-cell epigenomic data from the developing brain. They will also experimentally validate their computational model predictions using a mouse model of Schizophrenia that Dr. Bérubé’s lab has recently developed.

Project Title: Sudden unexpected death in Epilepsy: An Interdisciplinary study


  • Qi Zhang, MBBS, PhD, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
  • Ana Suller Marti, MD, Department of Clinical Neurological Sciences
  • Ali Khan, PhD, Department of Medical Biophysics; Scientist, Robarts Research Institute

Patients with epilepsy face an increased risk of dying at a young age. Most of these premature deaths remain unexplained after extensive investigation. This is known as sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP). A new collaborative team comprised of Drs. Zhang, Khan and Suller Marti is bringing together different disciplines by integrating their multidimensional data (genetic variations, clinical characteristics, epidemiology, neuropathology, and neuroradiology). The primary goal of this research is to identify key changes that occur in the cardiorespiratory centers in the brain of SUDEP patients.