And another (MSc that is…)!

Lab member Monica MacDonald has followed closely on the heals of Jack’s defense, successfully defending her own thesis this past week. Monica’s thesis explored the effect of aerobic fitness on brain excitability. Her results showed that prior aerobic fitness doesn’t seem to affect brain excitability. Stay tuned for a publication!

Special congratulations are in order for Monica as well – in addition to finishing her MSc thesis, Monica ALSO completed her clinical MSc (Physiotherapy) this past week. In fact, Monica is the first graduate of the School of Physiotherapy’s Joint Program, in which students complete research and clinical MSc degrees concurrently. Thanks for blazing the trail Monica!

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A new MSc in the lab!

Congratulations to lab member Jack Solomon on the successful defense of his MSc thesis. Jack’s thesis work examined the mechanisms underlying the inhibition of movement during motor imagery. Great job Jack! Stay tuned for the publication…

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Painting the lab red…

Congratulations go out to lab members Jack Solomon and Emily Rogers, who were recently awarded BrightRed scholarships from the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Nova Scotia. The Heart & Stroke’s BrightRed Student Research Awards Program, offered exclusively in Nova Scotia, is a donor-funded investment, which provides scholarship opportunities for student investigators, in collaboration with training institutions, to strengthen the recruitment and retention of researchers in Nova Scotia that align with Heart & Stroke’s strategic mission priorities. Emily’s award will help support her MSc work examining high intensity interval training and brain excitability, while Jack’s award will help support his PhD work examining consolidation of motor skills learned via imagery. Congratulations Emily and Jack!

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Spreading the word…

Part of the lab crew were busy spreading the word about our research at the recent annual meeting of the Organization for Human Brain Mapping in Vancouver. We presented work from a few different areas, including imagery and expertise, complex skill learning and neuroimaging.

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Student funding for exercise study

Great news yesterday from the Nova Scotia Health Research Foundation – MSc student Emily Rogers has received funding to support her work examining the effect of exercise on neuroplasticity. Emily’s work will look at how high intensity exercise (interval training) affects the excitability of the brain. The long-term goal is to determine how effective this intervention may be for helping to prime the brain prior to neurorehabilitation. Thanks to the NSHRF for their ongoing support of our work and of health research in the province of Nova Scotia.

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NSERC supporting student research

A great week for PhD student Chris Friesen continued! In addition to receiving funding to support his startup efforts (Axem Neurotechnology), Chris was successful in obtaining PhD funding from NSERC in the form of a NSERC PGS-D. The funding will support Chris’s doctoral work that focuses on developing neurofeedback systems to aid learning and rehabilitation. Congratulations Chris!

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A boost to commercialization…

PhD students Tony Ingram and Chris Friesen received a big boost to their startup effort Axem Neurotechnology in the form of a $50K grant from Innovacorp. The funding, provided through the Early Stage Commercialization Fund (ESCF), will support Axem’s efforts in developing wearable technology to aid athletes in mental aspects of their training.

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