Jonathan Downar, MD PhD FRCPC
Dr Jonathan Downar is Director of the MRI-Guided rTMS Clinic at the Toronto Western Hospital, Scientist at the Krembil Research Institute, and Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Toronto. He completed a BSc in biology at McGill University, followed by a PhD in neuroimaging at the University of Toronto with Dr. Karen Davis, before obtaining his medical degree from the University of Calgary in 2005. He then returned to Toronto for his psychiatry residency training, during which he also completed a research fellowship in neuroeconomics with Dr. Read Montague at Baylor College of Medicine.
Dr. Downar joined the Department of Psychiatry at Toronto Western Hospital on completion of his residency in 2010. Shortly thereafter, he established the MRI-Guided rTMS Clinic, with a mandate to accept referrals from the community as a clinical resource, while simultaneously conducting translational research into improving the efficacy, cost, access, and range of indications for non-invasive brain stimulation in psychiatric illness. The rTMS clinic is now among the busiest in North America, with 5 full-time treatment suites and over 3000 patient referrals to date. The clinic offers treatment without charge to approximately 50-70 patients each day.
Dr. Downar's research work focuses on translating advances in basic neuroimaging and neuroscience research into improvements in the efficacy, capacity, and cost of rTMS. His lab also seeks to identify better targets for rTMS across a wider range of conditions, and to identify neuroimaging biomarkers to predict the best treatment parameters for individual patients presenting for treatment. He currently holds grants from the National Institutes of Health, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Brain Canada, the Klarman Foundation, and the Buchan Family Foundation. His work to date has been published in leading clinical and basic research journals including Nature Neuroscience, JAMA Psychiatry, Biological Psychiatry, Neuropsychopharmacology, Brain Stimulation, Nature Medicine, and Lancet.