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How Can I Participate in one of the Studies?

Submitted by woliverw on Sun, 06/07/2015 - 7:05pm

How Can I Participate?

How can I participate in one of the studies?

Help us learn how kids brains develop!

To be considered for the study, the child has to:

  • Be a girl
  • Between the age of 4 to 6 years
  • Typically developing child
  • Able to speak/understand English
  • Able to lie still for approximately 1 hour while watching a movie
  • Able to wear ear plugs or headphones

A person cannot participate in the study if:

  • She has been diagnosed with a neurological or neurodevelopment disorder

In addition, we will not be able to include children who have certain metal implants or metal dental devices, including braces. Please give us a call if you are interested in participating and we will ask you some questions to figure out if you are eligible.

 What participation involves:

  • 2 sets of 2 visits to the Alberta Children’s Hospital spaced 6-months apart

Visit 1:

  • Complete some brief questionnaires (parents)
  • Brief assessments of attention skills, short IQ test

Visit 2:

  • MRI to take pictures of your child’s brain

Contact information

Please contact Dr. Signe Bray at slbray@ucalgary.ca or (403) 955-7440.

The study was approved by the University of Calgary Conjoint Health Research Ethics Board. Ethics ID: REB14-1089

Brain development in childhood and adolescence study

Your child must meet the following criteria in order to participate:

  • Between the age of 8 to 13 years
  • Typically developing child
  • Able to speak/understand English
  • Able to lie still for approximately 1 hour while watching a movie
  • Able to wear ear plugs or headphones

 A person cannot participate in the study if:

  • He/she has not been diagnosed with a neurological or neurodevelopment disorder

In addition, for safety reasons, we will not be able to include children who have certain metal implants or metal dental devices, including braces (check with us regarding eligibility).

What participation involves:

  • One initial scanning visit, during which your child will be asked to undergo an MRI brain scan at the Alberta Children's Hospital. The scan itself will last for approximately 1 hour. Your child will also be asked to complete a cognitive assessment (approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes) and you will be asked to complete a questionnaire (approximately 5-10 minutes). Scanning visits usually last for 3 hours. Passes for visitor parking will be provided and participants will be given a $30 dollar reimbursement for their time. In addition, participants may request an image of their brain to take home.
  • One follow-up visit. If the initial scanning visit is a success, your child will be invited to return for one follow-up visit in two years time. This visit will be structured like the initial visit. Additionally, participants will receive a parking pass and a $30 reimbursement, and participants may request another image of their brain to take home.

Contact information

Please contact Dr. Catherine Lebel and her team at clebel@ucalgary.ca or brainmri@ucalgary.ca or (403) 955-2966.

The study was approved by the University of Calgary Conjoint Health Research Ethics Board. Ethics ID: REB13-1346.

ASD and typically developing

Your child must meet the following criteria in order to participate:

  • Between the age of 14 to 20 years
  • Typically developing child OR diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
  • Able to speak/understand English
  • Able to lie still for approximately 1 hour while watching a movie or performing a task
  • Able to wear ear plugs or headphones

 A person cannot participate in the study if:

  • We will not be able to include children/adults who have certain metal implants or metal dental devices, including braces (check with us regarding eligibility).

 What participation involves:

  • Completing a 30-minute survey on your computer
  • One visit to do some pen and paper tests
  • A second visit to have a brain MRI

Contact information

Please contact Dr. Signe Bray at asdwebstudy@ucalgary.ca or (403) 955-7440.

The study was approved by the University of Calgary Conjoint Health Research Ethics Board. Ethics ID: 25210

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (rTMS) for Adolescent Depression

To be considered for the study, the person has to:

  • Be between 12-21 years of age and suffer from depression,
  • Have  used antidepressants - for at least 8 weeks - and they have not worked well and the person is still depressed,
  • Be right-handed
  • Able to speak/understand English
  • Able to lie still for approximately 1 hour while watching a movie
  • Able to wear ear plugs or headphones

 A  person cannot participate in the study if:

  • They have had previous seizures or epilepsy, hypertension, or additional neurological or psychiatric diagnoses,
  • They are pregnant

In addition, for safety reasons, we will not be able to include children/adults who have certain metal implants or metal dental devices, including braces (check with us regarding eligibility).

What participation involves:

  • First we do an assessment to make sure your child is a good fit for the study and to better understand how they are doing.
  • If your child is a good fit for the study, then we do an MRI scan and blood sample.
  • Then we do the rTMS treatment. This is 5 days a week for 3 weeks - so this is a significant commitment - but we need to repeat it as we are retraining the brain to work more like it should.
  • Then a final assessment, MRI scan, and blood sample to look for changes after treatment.

Contact information

Please contact Dr. Frank MacMaster and his team at, brainkids@ucalgary.ca 

The study was approved by the University of Calgary Conjoint Health Research Ethics Board. Ethics ID: 24656

Neuroimaging of Pediatric Obesity

To be considered for the study, the child has to:

  • Be between 7-11 years of age,
  • Be right-handed
  • Able to speak/understand English
  • Able to lie still for approximately 1 hour while watching a movie
  • Able to wear ear plugs or headphones

A child cannot participate in the study if he/she:

  • Use weight loss medications or binge eat
  • Is claustrophobic
  • Has neurological conditions, including but not limited to epilepsy, stroke, or traumatic brain injury with loss of consciousness greater than 10 minutes
  • Has gone through puberty

In addition, for safety reasons, we will not be able to include children/adults who have certain metal implants or metal dental devices, including braces (check with us regarding eligibility).

The study details are:

  • First, we do a mental health check and some brain function testing,
  • We then take a small blood sample (through finger prick),
  • Finally we take an MRI scan of the brain

Contact information

Please contact Dr. Frank MacMaster and his team at, brainkids@ucalgary.ca 

The study was approved by the University of Calgary Conjoint Health Research Ethics Board. Ethics ID: 24796.