Kevin Whittingstall

Canada Research Chair in Neurovascular Coupling

Tier 2 - 2011-05-01
Renewed: 2016-05-01
Université de Sherbrooke

049 7071 601 1606

Coming to Canada from

Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Tuebingen, Germany

Research involves

Developing safe and non-invasive imaging techniques that will help identify and lead to better diagnosis of diseases of the brain.

Research relevance

This research will result in improved detection and treatment of neurological disorders.

Decoding Nerve Activity and Blood Flow in the Brain

Every second of the day, we are flooded with input from a multitude of sights, sounds and other kinds of information. Our brains are made up of about 100 billion nerve cells (or neurons) that can organize and process this constant avalanche of data. This remarkable effort is maintained by a constant supply of fresh blood which keeps the neurons well-nourished and responsive.

How does the brain achieve this delicate balance between nerve activity and cerebral blood supply (or neurovascular coupling)? How are disruptions in this balance related to diseases of the brain?

These are some of the questions Dr. Kevin Whittingstall, Canada Research Chair in Neurovascular Coupling, is trying to answer.

Whittingstall is aiming to detect even the most subtle changes in neurovascular coupling by developing methods that can track nerve activity and blood flow in the brain safely and with great precision.

The tools developed by Whittingstall and his team will result in a better understanding of how neurovascular coupling behaves in healthy brains and how it is affected in patients with brain disorders, such as tumours. This will lead to safer and more accurate measures for the detection and treatment of brain disorders.