Our Commitment to Research

We are committed to promoting excellence in research into Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias.

We support projects that will significantly advance scientific and clinical knowledge and improve the quality of life for those living with the disease and their caregivers.

AlzSWP supports research programs locally, provincially and nationally through research funding for Western University, the Alzheimer Society of Ontario and the Alzheimer Society of Canada.

Our Involvement in Research

AlzSWP’s partnership with Western University is strong and is a point of pride for our organization. Since 1997, AlzSWP has donated over $1,000,000 towards Western research initiatives. Check out our Graduate and Master’s scholarship and grant recipients below.

The Alzheimer Society of Canada’s research program provides grant and training award opportunities to Canadian researchers and investigators who are conducting biomedical, social or psychological research into Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. Click here for more information about the Alzheimer Society Canada research program.

“Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth leading cause of death in Canada, yet research funding is only 4% of cancer research”

Premier Research Grant

The Premier Research Grant, awarded by the Alzheimer Foundation Southwest Partners, is a $100,000 grant awarded over two years to support dementia-related research, personnel and supporting infrastructure.

Grant Recipient: Dr. Robert Bartha

Dr. Robert Bartha is a Western Medical Biophysics professor at the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry and is a member of Western’s Brain and Mind Institute. Dr. Bartha’s project Metabolic and Functional Brain State: New Indicators of Early Alzheimer’s Disease looks to use powerful magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) equipment to develop a sensitive test to detect early Alzheimer’s disease at a time at which the brain can be repaired.

Grant Recipient: Dr. Stefan Kohler

Dr. Stefan Kohler is a Western psychology professor who is a member of Western’s Brain and Mind Institute. Dr. Kohler’s research project Delusional Misidentifications in Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias, explore the neurological impairment caused by dementia that leads to the belief that well-known people (usually primary caregivers) have changed identity.

Graduate Research Scholarship

The Graduate Research Scholarship is a $15,000 scholarship awarded to full-time graduate student in any faculty who are conducting research related to Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias (ADOD). The research conducted should be in support of projects that will advance the scientific and clinical knowledge of the disease, and improve quality of life for both those living with the disease and their caregivers.

For more information regarding applications and eligibility, visit the Western’s ASLM Graduate Scholarship page.

Graduate Research Award Recipients

Doctoral Award Recipient: Alex Major

Alex’s research project will investigate muscarinic drugs, which are used to imitate and/or replace some of the chemicals that are lacking in the brain of someone with dementia. His research will focus on how muscarinic drugs affect the frontal cortex, the brain region responsible for complex cognitive functions and may validate the use of muscarinic drugs as a future treatment in Alzheimer’s disease.

Masters Award Recipient: Jaqueline Kueper

Jaqueline’s research project will evaluate and attempt to improve the performance of current mild cognitive impairment (MCI) assessment tools to incorporate the assessment of motor functionality and completion of complex daily tasks.

Graduate Research Award Recipient

Master’s Award Recipient: Sehrish Haider

Sehrish’s research project focuses on identifying and raising awareness to the barriers faced by individuals with culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds in order to facilitate the development of strategies to improve healthcare access for this vulnerable group.

Graduate Research Award Recipients

Doctoral Award Recipient: Lindsay Oliver

Lindsay’s research study uses brain imaging to determine the effects of oxytocin and emotional imitation in patients with frontotemporal dementia providing insight into the mechanisms underlying symptoms and potential for oxytocin and/or emotional imitation as forms of treatment.

Masters Award Recipient: Jennifer Au

Jennifer’s research focuses on examining the role in mediating the interaction between Alzheimer’s disease and stroke and investigating the therapeutic potential of catalase-SKL, a biochemically engineered antioxidant known to reduce oxidative stress experimentally.

Graduate Research Award Recipients

Doctoral Award Recipient: Rebecca Affoo

Rebecca’s research examines the effects of Alzheimer’s disease on three related functions – swallowing, salivary flow and cardiovascular regulation and attempt to improve approaches to caregiving for persons with Alzheimer’s disease with research-backed methods.

Masters Award Recipient: Ashleigh Vella

Ashleigh’s research focuses on the grief experience of Alzheimer’s disease caregivers with aims to understand how grief reactions and losses shift over the progression of the disease and to explore how caregivers want or need to be supported.

Graduate Research Award Recipient

Masters Award Recipient: Ankur Bodalia

Ankur’s research project, Contribution of pannexin channels to beta-amyloid1-42 induced neurotoxicity in hippocampal neurons, seeks to answer if disrupting the pathway between beta-amyloid1-42 and pannexin activation can reduce the amount of brain neuron death seen in Alzheimer’s disease.

Quick Links to our available support programs and information:

Support for the Person with Dementia

Support for the Care Partner

Education for the Care Partner


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