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New lab opens for brain disease and disorders diagnostics


Halifax, NS – A new brain imaging lab has opened at the IWK Health Centre in Halifax. The Clinical Magnetoencephalography (MEG) Lab will be used to diagnose brain disease such as epilepsy and brain tumours.

The centre is a partnership between the National Research Council of Canada, IWK Health Centre, and the proponent of the MEG technology, Elekta Neuromag of Finland. MEG is a non-invasive and risk-free neuroimaging technique, and is well suited for a wide range of patients including children.

The lab represents a critical link between basic science and real-world clinical problems. It will bring medical doctors and scientists together, serving as a focal point for specialists from all disciplines. At the present time, the group is attracting brain imaging experts from around the world and includes more than 20 local collaborators.

“It is the critical mass of expertise in the Halifax cluster that has attracted Elekta’s direct investment in the city,” says Dr Roman Szumski, NRC vice president for life sciences. “The investment in the MEG lab puts Halifax in an excellent position to further stimulate growth both in the medical devices sector and research in the early detection of disease.”

“Halifax is emerging as a centre of expertise on the human brain and this facility will be used collaboratively by doctors and researchers from around the globe,” said Dr Patrick McGrath, vice president research at the IWK Health Centre. “The MEG lab will allow us to conduct important research in areas such as the assessment of consciousness in persons with brain injuries, neurocognitive function, developmental disorders and altered awareness.”