SFU partners with national healthcare network on concussion research

September 30, 2016

Originally published by SFU University Communications 

A team of SFU neuroscientists will partner with Croton HealthCare Canada Inc to carry out research related to breakthroughs in concussion diagnosis. 

The research will be carried out at SFU’s ImageTech Lab, currently under construction at Surrey Memorial Hospital and slated for opening in 2017. 

The collaboration was announced this week by Croton, a network of companies that are becoming global leaders in magnetoencephalography (MEG) technology and its clinical applications. 

SFU neuroscientists Ryan D’Arcy, Sam Doesberg and Vasily Vakorin, will work with Croton to examine the effectiveness of new diagnostic techniques using MEG. SFU has been instrumental in leading the brain imaging technology’s development for more than 25 years. 

Their results will be analysed using an advanced patent pending technique known as VESTAL. VESTAL software measures the frequency and origin of particular brainwaves, which appear to be specifically affected after brain injury. 

VESTAL was developed at the University of California San Diego (UCSD) and is currently under exclusive license to York Instruments, a company affiliated with Croton.

The methods and associated software platform will be included with York Instrument's newly developed MEGSCAN™ system, which maps brain activity by recording magnetic fields produced by electrical currents occurring naturally within neurons of the brain.

The system will create newly accessible MEG technology solutions for the growing challenges in healthcare.

“It is our hope that this globally innovative science will rapidly lead to better care for the countless people who are affected by concussion and related brain injuries, whether it be from sports related injuries, automobile accidents or other types of trauma,” says Dr. D'Arcy. 

The lab, which is being established by SFU and the City of Surrey, in partnership with Fraser Health, will translate brain technology advances, healthcare innovations in diagnostics and treatment monitoring into standard clinical neuroscience. 

Croton has joined Surrey’s health and technology district on Innovation Boulevard. It is one of several technology partners working to create rapid impacts in health improvement and outcomes.