Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada

Dr. George S. Robertson

Professor, Psychiatry/Pharmacology, Dalhousie University

Dr. George S. Robertson was jointly appointed as Professor and CIHR-Rx&D Chair in the Departments of Psychiatry and Pharmacology at Dalhousie University on October 1, 2002. His laboratory employs cell-based and animal models for neurodegenerative disorders to identify the mechanisms that regulate neural cell death, survival and repair. Dr. Robertson's doctoral studies were completed in the Department of Pharmacology at Dalhousie University under the supervision of Dr. Harold A. Robertson from 1985-1989. He then performed postdoctoral studies in the Division of Neurological Sciences at the University of British Columbia with Dr. Chris Fibiger from 1989-1992. This was followed by his appointed as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pharmacology at the University of Ottawa in 1992 and promotion to the rank of Associate Professor in 1996. During his tenure at the University of Ottawa, Dr. Robertson demonstrated that virally-mediated over-expression of the anti-apoptotic proteins NAIP and XIAP preserved neuronal cell survival and function in animal models of ischemic stroke and Parkinson’s disease. The therapeutic implications of these findings led to his recruitment to the Merck Frost Centre for Therapeutic Research in Kirkland (Quebec) where he served as Head of the Department of Pharmacology from 1998-2002. He has published 115 peer-reviewed papers of which 25 have been cited at least 100 times.

Learn more about Dr. Robertson

How did you become interested in MS research? What inspires you to continue advancing research in this field?

My father was afflicted with an aggressive form of MS. I am inspired by the tremendous progress that has been made in the diagnosis and treatment of MS over the last few decades.

What do you enjoy most about doing research and what are some of the challenges you face?

I most enjoy working with my undergraduate and graduate students that often pursue careers in fields related to MS. The major challenge I face is the lack of funding for basic biomedical research, particularly in Atlantic Canada.

Describe the importance and level of collaboration in your research?

Collaboration is very important to my work. This enables us to learn from other laboratories and share our limited resources to perform critical experiments.

How important is the support from the MS Society in enabling you to conduct research?

Essential - without funding from the MS Society, I would be unable to conduct research directed towards the development of improved therapies for this crippling disorder.

Dr. Robertson’s MS Society supported project:

Gait parameters as predictors of functional recovery in a mouse model of MS