Ala Birca (Alumni) - University of Montreal
|Award Type:||Career Development Award|
|Supervisor(s):||Dr. Anne Monique Nuyt|
|Project Title:||Individualized strategies for improving neurological outcomes in critically ill neonates.|
Ala Birca, M.D., Ph.D., is a Pediatric Neurologist at the Sainte-Justine Mother-Child University Health Center, affiliated with the University of Montreal where she is also an Assistant Professor in the Department of Neuroscience. She is a CCHCSP/FRQs-funded Clinical Investigator within the Research Center of Sainte-Justine. Dr. Birca obtained her clinical training in Pediatric Neurology at the same institution, where she also completed her Ph.D. in Neuroscience, and she is board-certified in Neurology and in Clinical Neurophysiology. She then pursued a post-doctoral fellowship at The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto which helped her to crystallise her research focus in neonatal neurology and neurophysiology. Her research program is devoted to ensuring an optimal brain health and neurodevelopment in critically ill neonates. Through interdisciplinary collaborations, she is developing brain monitoring strategies aimed at detecting the early signs of brain injury, which will enable neuroprotective interventions. She is also collaborating in the pan-Canadian Neonatal Brain Platform. She focuses on improving outcomes in the most vulnerable populations of neonates such as those with birth asphyxia and congenital heart disease. Her research strategy involves their longitudinal follow-up to understand how brain injury, genetic/congenital anomalies and environmental factors interact in order to develop more efficient interventions. Dr. Birca’s research is funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Santé (FRQS).