Dr. Ben Goldstein examines cardiovascular ties to early-onset bipolar disorder with support from the Miner’s Lamp Fund

Dr. Ben GoldsteinDr. Benjamin Goldstein’s new research project is moving forward with support from the Miner’s Lamp Fund — a partnership between IAMGOLD Corporation and the University of Toronto’s Department of Psychiatry.

Heart disease occurs much earlier and more frequently among people with bipolar disorder, which is why Dr. Goldstein wants to know what role, if any, abnormalities in tiny blood vessels throughout the brain and body play in the underlying cause of bipolar disorder.

Dr. Goldstein, who is also a senior scientist at Sunnybrook Research Institute, plans to examine tiny microvessels of 140 adolescents — 70 with bipolar disorder, 35 whose parents have bipolar disorder and 35 with no personal or family history of the disorder.

He hopes to connect dots between these two conditions, by using multiple innovative measures, including magnetic resonance imaging of the brain and heart, and photographs of the eye’s retina. This work could help uncover new targets in preventing early-onset bipolar disorder.

Dr. Goldstein was also the 2017 recipient of the Royal-Mach-Gaensslen Prize for Mental Health Research, a national prize that provides funding to outstanding researchers who are affiliated with a Canadian academic or clinical research institution in the field of mental health.