Wataru Inoue, PhD, received a New Investigator Fellowship from the Ontario Mental Health Foundation.
With this grant, Inoue's lab aims to investigate the mechanisms of stress-induced neural plasticity. Dysregulation in this process is believed to be relevant to the pathophysiology of stress-related disorders, such as major depression. Specifically, his team will study the roles of microglia, the brain's immune cells, in helping reorganize neural connectivities during stress and how this process becomes dysregulated in severe chronic stress.
"We are working to understand the exact nature of neural plasticity and the link to clinical depression in order to improve diagnosis, treatment and prevention of the disease," said Inoue. "The Ontario Mental Health Foundation has been a key player promoting scientific discovery that leads to understanding of mental illnesses and better treatments. This grant will jump-start my new stress neurobiology research."
The grant provides $40,000 per year for a total of three years.
For more research details, read Inoue's Bell Let's Talk Day Q&A, Ending stigma through research.