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Robert B. Zipursky

Bob is Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Toronto. After graduating from Cornell, Bob returned to Hamilton, Ontario where he attended medical school at McMaster University. He completed residency training in psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh in 1986. He went on to do fellowship training in brain imaging in psychiatric disorders at Stanford University.

Bob returned to Canada to assume a faculty position in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Toronto in 1991. He developed the First Episode Psychosis Program at the Clarke Institute of Psychiatry/CAMH to advance the understanding of the biology of schizophrenia and to develop approaches to optimize the outcomes from schizophrenia. The innovative programs he developed included a dedicated inpatient research unit and specialized outpatient clinic, a home treatment team for first episode psychosis, and a community-based program to help support young people with psychosis to return to school and work. During Bob’s 15 years at Toronto, he was appointed Professor and Tapscott Chair in Schizophrenia Studies, and Vice Chair for Research in the Department of Psychiatry.

Bob’s MRI research identified widespread differences in brain gray matter volumes in patients with schizophrenia and demonstrated that these differences were apparent at illness onset. His contributions to MRI research also include publications describing structural brain differences associated with aging, alcoholism, bipolar disorder and anorexia nervosa.

In 2007, Bob was appointed Professor and Morgan Firestone Chair of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences at McMaster University, Chief of Psychiatry and VP for Mental Health and Addiction Services at St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton and Hamilton Health Sciences Hospitals. In these roles, Bob co-led the development of a new psychiatric hospital, St. Joseph's Centre for Integrated Healthcare, which brought together comprehensive mental health and addiction services with specialized medical and imaging services in a teaching and research environment.

Bob returned to University of Toronto in 2018 where the focus of his clinical and research work is on treatment-resistant schizophrenia.