Meet: Dr. Sanjeev Kumar

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Sanjeev Kumar.jpgMeet: Dr. Sanjeev Kumar, ONDRI Co-investigator and Clinical Research Fellow at Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH)

Dr. Kumar feels that jogging (and some running) is one of the best things he can do for himself and his patients. He believes that regular exercise is one  way to prevent dementia and he’s continuously telling his patients to be active.

Why did you choose your profession?

I've always been curious about the mind and my fierce curiosity triggered me to study cognition and psychiatric disorders. I decided to specialize as a psychiatrist in geriatrics because of my strong compassion for people in the later stages of their lives.

I was raised by my grandparents and find it natural to connect with and understand the struggles of navigating this sometimes difficult stage of life. When I'm not working, I spend time educating the community about memory disorders, by giving presentations to retirement homes and primary care physicians.

What award did you recently receive?

I was awarded the prestigious NARSAD Young Investigators Award (now called Brain & Behavior Research Foundation) in 2014, to conduct a study in Alzheimer’s disease using Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation. The award is given to investigators using cutting-edge technologies to develop new interventions or to advance understanding of the brain disorders.

I'm the only NARSAD Young Investigator Award recipient for Alzheimer’s disease this year, and I'm using the grant to get new ideas off the ground, to better understand the illness, and develop a new treatment intervention.

What excites you about ONDRI?

ONDRI’s greatest strength is collaboration. It’s exciting that there’s so much expertise collaborating and working toward a common goal. Our understanding of the brain disorders is still relatively primitive and more efforts like this are needed for the health of future generations. It’s a big study.

What’s your role with ONDRI?

I'm one of the co-investigators and leading the efforts at CAMH. I participate in study workshops, help streamline study procedures, recruit participants, conduct assessments, and manage the flow of the study.

What did you do before working with ONDRI?

I joined CAMH at the University of Toronto in 2013 after working as a Geriatric Psychiatry Fellow at the Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

I completed my Psychiatry Residency at the Carilion Clinic-Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine, and my Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery at Government Medical College in India. After medical school, I also served in the Indian Army as a physician.