Xia Zhang


Xia Zhang
Research Director

Room: Rm. 6453 ROMHC
Office: 613-722-6521 ext. 6218
Work E-mail: xia.zhang@theroyal.ca

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Xia Zhang holds the position of an Associate Professor at the departments of Psychiatry and Cellular and Molecular Medicine, at the University of Ottawa.

His main research interests are in the areas of brain mechanisms contributing to drug abuse and how these relate to mental illness, especially anxiety and mood disorders.

Dr. Zhang holds two prestigious awards: the New Investigator award from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the Independent Investigator award from the National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and Depression (NARSAD) in the USA.

In addition, he is the Principal Investigator on five peer reviewed grants from CIHR, National Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), Canadian Foundation for Innovation (CFI) and the Heart & Stroke Foundation of Canada.

With over 2 million dollars of research grants, Dr. Zhang's research team is now focusing on the brain CB1 receptors - structures on the surface of brain cells that serve as docking sites for signaling molecules and cannabinoids to relay information or trigger a reaction. Specifically, they are studying mechanisms by which the the cannabinoid CB1 receptors interact with other neurotransmitter (e.g. serotonin, norepinephrine and dopamine) receptors in the brain.

Dr. Zhang' s research has, and will continue to have, an impact on research in the areas relevant to mental health, including discovery of novel treatments for drug addiction, aging-related learning and memory decline, anxiety and depression.

Key words:

cannabis, cannabinoids, endocannabinoids, rewardmemory, anxiety, depression, synaptic plasticity, memory, ischemia, sleep

Fields of Interest

  • How cannabis, cannabinoids and endocannabinoids modulate memory, anxiety, depression, neuronal degeneration and sleep through cannabinoid receptor signaling
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