Owerko Centre Research Catalyst Grants

The Owerko Centre Research Catalyst Grants develop new collaborative partnerships between researchers studying neurodevelopment and child mental health. 

The goal of the Owerko Centre Reserch Catalyst Grants are to catalyze new research and bring together PIs to create new collaborations. Thus, ideally grants are comprised of researchers who have never worked together before, although the competition is open to existing teams with sufficient justification as to why the project is outside previous collaboration. 

For the 2020 competition, we received 18 outstanding applications and were able to support 5 grants in total: 4 supported with funding from the Owerko Centre and 1 supported by the Hotchkiss Brain Institute. We are very pleased to see that the 2020 winners represent the full breadth of the Owerko Centre, from bench science to policy level work.  

The successful research teams from the 2020 competition are noted below.



Dr. Deborah Dewey & Dr. Nils Forkert 

Using Machine Learning to Predict the Effects of Maternal and Early Childhood Exposure to Neurotoxic Chemical Elements and Essential Nutrients on Neurodevelopmental Outcomes

Dr. Davide Martino & Dr. Laura Sycuro

Cross-disorder approach to the study of gut microbiome in neurodevelopmental disorders


Dr. Ray Turner & Dr. David Schriemer

Restoring Protein Translation in Fragile X Syndrome

Dr. Deborah Kurrasch, Dr. Myriam Hemberger & Dr. Sarah McFarlane

The Effects of Maternal Infection on Placenta and Developing Brains

Dr. Gerald Giesbrecht, Dr. Melanie Noel & Dr. Alfred Yeung

Fibre for Thought: Reducing Pain and Anxiety by Gut-Brain Axis Modulation