The Ontario Brain Institute Marks Ten Years of Excellence in Brain Health

OBI brings together a community of experts through collaborative research, commercial innovation and connected care.

Established in November 2010 with funding from the provincial government, the Ontario Brain Institute (OBI) marks a decade of excellence in brain health – improving the lives of the 1 in 3 people impacted by brain disorders.

Ontario ranks in the top five globally for science productivity, is home to over 1000 neuroscientists, world-class brain research centres, a vibrant neurotechnology cluster, and an engaged and empowered patient community. In recognition of the world class community of experts, OBI was formed to harness this talent to improve brain health in Ontario.

Working in partnership with Ontario’s brain health community, OBI has integrated research, commercialization and care into a learning healthcare system that accelerates discovery and spurs innovation. Some of the system-wide changes have been focused on advancing knowledge of brain disorders, sharing unprecedented levels of data through Brain-CODE, increase in clinically validated neurotechnology and the creation of tools and services to help manage brain health and wellness. OBI’s positive impact on research, commercialization, and brain health from the last 10 years are captured here.

“Since our inception, OBI has championed collaboration within the brain health community. And thanks to the exceptional support from our partners, we have been able to produce quality results directly impacting the community through our translational work”, said Tom Mikkelsen, President & Scientific Director of OBI. “Currently, living through a health crisis, we can fully appreciate the importance of teamwork, something OBI began a decade ago – and we look forward to the next 10 years with this renewed confidence.”

OBI’s work is grounded by its three pillars: research, commercialization and care with the end goal of moving research from the lab into the community. In the last decade alone, OBI has created a network that represents 192 researchers, 89 partners, 61 entrepreneurs, 163 interns, 81 portfolio companies and 29 community organizations. Together they helped leveraged $389 million, facilitated 128 open data requests, gathered data from 20,954 participants, brought 20 products to market and published 248 tools and resources.

“OBI has achieved some remarkable results over the last 10 years; and on behalf of the Ontario government, I’d like to congratulate them on this exciting milestone,” said Ross Romano, Minister of Colleges and Universities. “Over the years, OBI has been successful in aligning with our province’s priorities of improving the health and wellbeing of Ontarians diagnosed and living with brain disorders, enhancing collaboration in research and technology, and driving the province’s long-term economic competitiveness through innovation and intellectual property commercialization. Through their hard work, dedication and collaboration with various research partners, OBI has successfully enhanced research and technology development in the brain health sector to improve the lives of Ontarians impacted by brain disorders.”

OBI’s strategic investments in bringing lab to life have been supported by its various programs and initiatives to build a system of integrated care. OBI’s Brain-CODE, a state-of-the-art neuroinformatics platform was designed to promote open science and safe data sharing; the ONtrepreneurs Program offers support to early-stage entrepreneurs whereas NERD is built to help de-risk neurotech investments; OBI-GEEK supports community-led programs to spread and scale while the Priority Setting Partnerships with the community are meant to take community priority needs and questions back to research and policy experts.

Marking 10 years of accomplishments, OBI is set to continue its work with renewed rigour and to continue to improve the lives of the 1 in 3 people living with a brain disorder. For more information on OBI and its work, please visit the website here.

About the Ontario Brain Institute

The Ontario Brain Institute is a not-for-profit organization that accelerates discovery and innovation, benefiting both patients and the economy. Our collaborative ‘team science’ approach promotes brain research, commercialization and care by connecting researchers, clinicians, industry, patients, and their advocates to improve the lives of those living with brain disorders. Welcome to Brain Central. Funding provided, in part, by the Government of Ontario. Visit for more information. Follow us on Twitter (@OntarioBrain).

Fatima Khan

Senior Lead, Communications

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