For researchers

New award targets heart-brain connection

Heart & Stroke and Brain Canada unveil a $6 million team grant competition that aims to harness the power of collaboration and innovation in Canada’s research community to explore the heart-brain connection. For details see IMPACT Award below.

Magnified vascular system showing red veins on a blue background.
Latest news
Updates to the research program during COVID-19 +

Due to the unprecedented financial challenges caused by a decreased ability to fundraise during the COVID-19 pandemic we would like to explicitly advise that Heart & Stroke may not be in a position to offer/fund any awards from the 2021/22 competition. The 2021/22 competition closed in September 2020. Please continue to check back for updates.

(07/12/2020) UPDATE: Please be advised that peer review for the F21 competition year is scheduled to take place virtually between January and March 2021. As a result, we will not have results until at least May 2021. Once complete, results will be distributed via email. Please contact us if you have questions/concerns.

(19/06/2020) In order to support the viability and sustainability of the research program, the Heart & Stroke Board of Directors has asked current 2018/19 and 2019/20 Grants-in-Aid holders to reduce their remaining budgets in order to fund the highest ranked applications from the 2020/21 competition with smaller, one-year (only) bridge grants. We remain committed to funding life-saving research and thank the research community for its continued support during these unprecedented times.

Heart & Stroke is proud to fund Canada’s best heart and brain health researchers. The links below provide a comprehensive guide to our funding opportunities, application processes, peer review and more.

Grants and awards
Grants-in-Aid +

The Grant-in-Aid (GIA) program provides operating funds to support important, pertinent, novel research in the areas of heart disease and stroke. GIA funding promotes research discovery, exploration and innovation across all health research themes. Knowledge gained from scientific findings contributes to the cardiovascular and cerebrovascular health of Canadians through prevention, treatment and recovery.

Research is supported across the four health research themes:

  • Basic biomedical
  • Clinical
  • Health services/systems
  • Social, cultural, environmental and population health.

Researchers at all career stages are encouraged to apply to the GIA program. Principal Investigators (and co-PIs) must have a full-time academic or faculty appointment (i.e., at minimum, at the assistant or clinical assistant professor level) in Canada at the time of application.

Grant-in-Aid Program Guidelines

Personnel Awards +

The National Personnel Award (NPA) programs provide salary support to Canada’s top researchers across the career continuum. This support helps ensure the training, retention and success of Canada’s cardiovascular and cerebrovascular researchers.

National New Investigator Award 

This award provides salary support to individuals who have clearly demonstrated excellence during their doctoral and post-doctoral training in cardiovascular or cerebrovascular research. New Investigator awards are tenable in Canada only.

National New Investigator Guidelines

Heart-Brain IMPACT Award +

Brain Canada and Heart & Stroke are pleased to announce a new funding opportunity for Canadian researchers. The Heart-Brain Connection IMPACT Award will launch in March 2021 with detailed guidelines, eligibility criteria and comprehensive information on how to apply. The multi-disciplinary and multi-institutional competition will award two team grants of up to $2.9 million each. 

With its unique competition guidelines, the Heart-Brain Connection IMPACT Award will enable breakthroughs in research aimed at generating new knowledge and accelerating its translation into action for people living with conditions that impact the heart and brain, such as heart disease, stroke and vascular cognitive impairment (VCI).  

The competition launched officially on March 4, 2021.

Watch this space for information or sign up to our quarterly Research e-newsletter for updates as well as all available funding opportunities.

Scholarships +

The Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada - McDonald Scholarships

The McDonald Scholarship was established in honour of Ewing (Mac) McDonald, executive director of Heart & Stroke from 1968 to 1987. Each year, the scholarship is awarded to the highest-rated applicant in the New Investigator competition. Recent winners:

  • 2020-21: Dr. Scott B. Widenmaier  (University of Saskatchewan) — Investigating the molecular interface underlying immunometabolic homeostasis in obesity-linked cardiovascular disease
  • 2018 – 2019: Dr. Gopinath Sutendra (University of Alberta) — Metabolic modulation as a novel therapy for chemotherapy-induced cardiotoxicity.
  • 2017 – 2018: Dr. Wenbin Liang (University of Ottawa Heart Institute) — Role of Wnt signaling in cardiac arrhythmogenesis.
  • 2016 – 2017: Dr. T. Alexander Quinn (Dalhousie University) — Mechanisms and importance of mechano-electric coupling in arrhythmogenesis during acute regional ischemia.

The Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada - Henry J. M. Barnett Scholarships

The Henry J. M. Barnett Scholarship is presented annually to a highly rated investigator working in the area of cerebrovascular research. This prestigious award was established to honour Dr. Barnett’s exceptional contributions to stroke research, education, and patient care in Canada.

  • 2020-21: Dr. Amy Yu (Sunnybrook Research Institute) — Determining sex disparities In Stroke Care and Outcomes to optimize recoVERy (DISCOVER) 
  • 2018 – 2019: Dr. Thalia Field (University of British Columbia) — SECRET: Safety of rivaroxaban for CeREbral venous Thrombosis.
  • 2017 – 2018: Dr. Glen C. Jickling (University of Alberta) — Genomics of high risk transient ischemic attacks.
  • 2016 – 2017: Dr. Claudine Gauthier (Concordia University) — Quantitative MRI of cerebral vascular and metabolic health; cardiovascular risk factors, stroke and exercise.
Chairs and Professorships +

A Chair/Professorship supports a leading investigator to focus on heart disease and/or stroke, often building a network or centre of excellence at the institution. These initiatives are typically designated endowments or done in partnership with like-minded organizations. They provide salary and infrastructure support to enable a leading researcher to develop a specific heart disease and stroke research focus at a Canadian university.

Meet our Heart & Stroke Chairs and Professors

Publication update +


Only updates to the six (6) representative publications attached as part of the proposal and progress sections of the application will be accepted.

Please click to download the Publication Update form and send the completed form with the publication update to Heart & Stroke staff will notify the applicant on acceptance of the publication update.

Heart & Stroke will not accept letters indicating confirmation of acceptance for publication of a paper after 01 December 2020.

National New Investigator

Only updates to the three (3) representative publications attached as part of section 13 of the New Investigator application will be accepted.

Please click to download the Publication Update form and send the completed form with the publication update to Heart & Stroke staff will notify the applicant on acceptance of the publication update.

Heart & Stroke will not accept letters indicating confirmation of acceptance for publication of a paper after 01 December 2020.

Policies and Resources +

The following policies apply to all researchers funded by Heart & Stroke:

If you have questions about the above policies, please contact

Apply to current funding opportunities
Available opportunities +

There are no open competitions at this time.

Our 2021-22 competition closed in September 2020. 

Competition results
Latest results +

Heart & Stroke is honoured to fund the best and brightest researchers across Canada. Our awardees will lead us to ground-breaking discoveries that will help people affected by heart disease and stroke live longer, healthier lives.

Our researchers and their projects represent innovative work within their respective disciplines, as determined by a rigorous peer review process by our Scientific Review Committee (SRC).

We are proud to support the following researchers (listed by research program):

Post award administration
Grants-in-Aid +

All reporting templates for Grants-in-Aid (GIA) are available on CIRCUlink, Heart & Stroke’s online grants management system. Submissions should adhere to the following schedule:

  • Progress reports: A satisfactory progress report must be filed with Heart & Stroke on an annual basis no later than 30 days following the one-year anniversary date.
  • Final reports: Following completion/termination of the award, a satisfactory final report must be filed with Heart & Stroke within 30 days (this may be the approved carry forward year which extends beyond the normal term of the grant).
  • Close-out reports: A satisfactory close‐out‐report must be filed with Heart & Stroke before the first anniversary of the project completion date.


GIA Financial Report

Personnel Awards +

All reporting templates for Personnel awards are available for download below. Completed reports must be emailed to

  • Progress reports: A satisfactory progress report must be filed with Heart & Stroke on an annual basis no later than 30 days following the one-year anniversary date.
  • Final Reports: Following completion/termination of the award, a satisfactory final report must be filed with Heart & Stroke within 30 days.
Strategic Research Awards +

All reporting templates for Strategic Research Awards are available for download below. Completed reports must be emailed to

Progress Report Template (Word Version)

Progress Report Template (PDF Version)

Final Report Template

Research Fund Initiatives Financial Report

Notify us of an upcoming paper +

Heart & Stroke strives to showcase our amazing research and highlight the outcomes of our funding to our donors and volunteers. 

To facilitate transparency and promote our research, Heart & Stroke must be notified in advance of the publication date of any major publications and/or news releases arising from research funded by Heart & Stroke. Ideally, papers accepted for publication should be forwarded to Heart & Stroke when you send your revisions back to the journal. This ensures that we have appropriate time to review and identify potential opportunities for promotion. 

Important: Please send all research publications to

Should Heart & Stroke decide to promote your research, we will work closely with you to draft any relevant materials. While we can't issue a news release for every paper that we receive, we can communicate it via channels including our website and social media.

Peer review
Information on Peer Review +

Peer review at Heart & Stroke is conducted through the Scientific Review Committee (SRC). The SRC’s primary purpose is to ensure transparency, integrity and impact of the resources available for research. In addition to application peer review and program development, the SRC is also responsible for the scientific post-grant administration of funded grants, including scientific monitoring of grants on behalf of multiple funders. The SRC also works with other advisory volunteer bodies within Heart & Stroke.

The SRC peer reviews well over 500 applications on an annual basis. Membership spans all four themes of health research. SRC members donate an estimated 45,000 volunteer hours every year. 

The overall peer review system is led by the SRC executive chair and vice -chair along with approximately 26 members of the Executive Committee composed of SRC sub-panel chairs and deputy chairs.

The SRC oversees the peer review of all research led by Heart & Stroke; SRC panels are formed based on funding opportunities and applications submitted for Grants-in-Aid, Personnel Awards and Impact Awards.

Explore the steps and stages of peer review.

Find research participants +

Heart & Stroke can promote research studies and clinical trials in Canada and help researchers recruit participants. We post short descriptions of studies on our website and in a monthly newsletter and circulate to our extensive e-registry of people with lived experience, both caregivers and survivors. 

Heart & Stroke prioritizes studies that have ethics approval, include gender and sex-based analysis and reporting and offer accessible participation (e.g., accommodate for linguistic, financial, medical/physical restrictions). 

If you are interested in having your study included, please complete the application form.

Heart & Stroke will review and respond within 10 business days after receipt of a completed application. Any questions about this process or the application form should be directed to

View current requests for research volunteers.

Clinical Trials Ontario: Decision Aids for Patient Partner Engagement with Clinical Trials

Women's Research Network +

Since 2016, Heart & Stroke has sought to stimulate dialogue about heart disease and stroke in women, address sex and gender disparities in prevention and management, and ultimately transform and save women’s lives through strategic capacity building, research, and knowledge exchange. 

With the support of a $5 million grant from the federal government, Heart & Stroke supports early and mid-career researchers, funds research on women’s heart and brain health, and coordinates a community of interest to facilitate knowledge sharing and capacity building. The Women’s Heart & Brain Health Research Network aims to improve knowledge sharing and collaboration and to enable capacity building for the next generation of researchers. 

The network facilitates learning and sharing of opportunities and resources. Advancing knowledge and skills related to using Sex- and Gender-Based Analysis and Research (SGBAR) for researchers working on women’s heart and brain health is a priority. 

Knowledge sharing activities facilitate learning from researchers funded through our Women’s initiative as well as experts within the Women’s Heart & Brain Health Research Network. Learning opportunities are convened online and in person.

In this March 2019 webinar, Dr. Bernice Downey describes her effort to understand how Indigenous women’s heart health has been negatively impacted by various cultural and social factors, and how to remedy this problem.

Membership is open and diverse. The network includes Indigenous organizations and communities, individuals with lived experiences including survivors and caregivers for women, professionals such as researchers, clinicians, and knowledge users like government bureaucrats and policy makers. We solicit the engagement of trainees and early career investigators.

If you are interested in joining, please contact us for more information. 

To sign up for the Women’s Heart & Brain Health Research Network eNewsletter, please contact us.

View recent editions:

Women’s Heart Health Summit 2021

Hosted by Heart & Stroke and the University of Ottawa Heart Institute, the 2021 Canadian Women’s Heart Health Summit welcomes primary care providers, cardiologists, neurologists, gynecologists, pharmacists, nurses, rehabilitation providers, allied healthcare providers, researchers, policy-makers, Indigenous organizations, community partners and women with lived experience. 

The 2021 summit will feature plenary sessions, panel discussions, poster displays, and networking opportunities for speakers, delegates and sponsors.

Opportunities for trainees and early career investigators

The Women's Heart & Brain Health Research Network is working hard to enhance the capacity of junior and early career investigators and trainees working on women’s heart and brain health, to better prepare the next generation of researchers.

Trainees can showcase their work and enhance their presentation skills through mini research rounds. These mini-rounds are one-hour webinars open to members of the network and the public to raise the profile of early career investigators, exposing their work to feedback and potential collaboration and career advancement.

If you’d like to showcase your work, please submit an expression of interest.

Contact us and Subscribe to our Research Newsletter +

If you have any questions regarding Heart & Stroke research programs, please contact us at

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