Assistant Professor  |  Neuroscience Research Platform

Nicole McKinnon


Peter Gilgan Centre for Research and Learning , (Sickkids), 686 Bay St, Toronto, Ontario Canada M5G 0A4
Graduates, Summer Students


Cross Appointed to Physiology
Assistant Professor, Department of Paediatrics, University of Toronto
Staff Physician, Department of Critical Care Medicine
Scientist Track Investigator, Peter Gilgan Center for Research and Learning 
Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids)

Research Synopsis:

Dr. McKinnon currently focuses on improving our understanding of the effects of sedative medications, such as diazepam, on neurodevelopment following cerebral ischemia, and potentially bridges the gap between basic science and clinical practices. Specifically, she is interested in determining whether functional memory deficits are more pronounced in the setting of sedative agents that act as agonists for the GABA receptor following cerebral ischemia, as well as whether GABA agonism through sedatives alter the hippocampal neuronal involved in learning and memory.

Keywords: Learning and memory, Brain Injury, TBI, Stroke, dopamine, GABA, Animal behaviors, LTP

Detailed Description:  Pre-clinical models of cerebral ischemia. Behavioural paradigms of learning and memory including novel objects, Morris water maze, and fear conditioning. Field and whole cell electrophysiology recordings on hippocampal slices.

Collaborators: Drs. Benjamin Steinberg, Michael Salter


Behavior Tests, Field and Whole Cell Electrophysiology, MCAO brain surgery, Histology


Electrophysiology rig, rodent surgery equipment, behavior tests set-up


Gary Ren (MSc. Candidate)