LOZANO, Andres M.

University Professor and Canada Research Chair, University of Toronto. 

Dr. Andres Lozano is University Professor and Chairman of Neurosurgery at the University of Toronto and holds both the RR Tasker Chair in Functional Neurosurgery and a Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Neuroscience.

He is best known for his work in Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS).  His team has mapped out cortical and subcortical structures in the human brain and have pioneered  applications of DBS  for various disorders including  Parkinson’s disease, depression, dystonia, anorexia, Huntington’s and Alzheimer’s disease.

Prof. Lozano has approximately 500 manuscripts published or in press and is according to Thompson Reuters, the most cited neurosurgeon in the world for the 11 year period from 2002 to 2012. He has trained over 50 international fellows in Functional Neurosurgery,  many who have become leaders in their field.  Prof. Lozano serves on the board of several international organizations and is a founding member of the scientific advisory board of the Michael J Fox Foundation and the Weston Brain Institute.  He has received a number of awards including the Margolese National Brain Award, the Olivecrona medal and the Pioneer in Medicine award, has been elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences and has received the Order of Spain.



17:00-18:30 5 NOVEMBER
thematic SESSION i.B: mapping the brain, unlocking the mind

Adjusting the Dials in the Circuits of the Human Brain with Deep Brain Stimulation
It is increasingly being recognized that neurologic and psychiatric disturbances are caused by dysfunction in specific brain circuits. Using a novel surgical technique called Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS), it is possible to introduce electrodes within malfunctioning circuits in the human brain and deliver constant electrical stimulation through implanted pacemakers.   This permits the adjustment of the activity of the malfunctioning brain circuits- turning them either up or down as required. This is being done mostly for Parkinson’s disease and over 120,000 patients worldwide have now received DBS with striking results.

With the success of modulating circuits that control movement as in Parkinson’s disease, the possibility of introducing electrodes and modifying other circuits,  for example those regulating mood and cognitive function is being examined. The use of Deep Brain Stimulation in treating depression, obsessive compulsive disorder, anorexia, epilepsy and even Alzheimer’s disease is actively being investigated.  The advantage of the DBS procedures is that because of the precision of the surgical techniques,  specific brain areas can be targeted – influencing only those brain structures that are malfunctioning and  delivering treatment only where it is needed.  In addition, by controlling the dose of electrical current delivered, DBS allows the adjustment of the activity of these circuits to optimize clinical benefits and minimize any untoward effects.

These techniques are driving us to probe novel areas in the brain and allowing are us to gain a better understanding of what goes wrong in the brain in neurologic and psychiatric disorders.  The application of DBS is showing promise in developing novel therapies to treat many of the patients throughout the world  who continue to be disabled despite our currently best available efforts.