Vladimir Hachinski, CM, MD, FRCPC, DSc, FRSC, Doctor honoris causaX4 is Distinguished University Professor, Professor of Neurology & Epidemiology, past Richard & Beryl Ivey Chair, Department of Clinical Neurological Sciences, Western University, Canada. He graduated with an MD from the University of Toronto and trained in internal medicine and neurology in Montreal and Toronto and in research in London, U.K. and Copenhagen.
He pioneered with Dr. John W. Norris the world’s first successful acute stroke unit, now the standard of care. He coined the term brain attack to stress the urgency of stroke and discovered the key role of the brain’s insula in control of the heart that when awry, can lead to sudden death. He is a leading advocate, contributor and thought leader of the vascular (treatable) component of dementia, crystallizing the concepts and coining the terms multi-infarct dementia, leukoaraiosis, vascular cognitive impairment, brain at risk stage, devising the eponymic Hachinski Ischemic Score that identifies the treatable component. (over 2600 citations) He was the principal neurological investigator of the Canadian American Ticlopidine Study (PI M. Gent), the EC/IC Bypass Study and the North American Symptomatic Carotid Endarterectomy Trial (PI HJM Barnett). With Shawn Whitehead and David Cechetto, he discovered a link between Alzheimer disease and stroke, paving the way for novel therapeutic approaches. Recently he and a colleague showed for the first-time decreased dementia incidence at a whole population level, concomitant with a successful stroke strategy. He led the adoption of a Proclamation addressing stroke and potentially preventable dementias on behalf of the World Stroke Organization, endorsed by Alzheimer’s Disease International, World Federation of Neurology, American Heart/Stroke Association, American Academy of Neurology, World Heart Federation, and 17 other organizations aimed at uniting the stroke and dementia communities in a common effort to prevent stroke and potentially preventable dementias. He has authored, co-authored or co-edited 18 books, including the forthcoming “Treatable and potentially preventable dementias” and over 800 scientific and scholarly publications. He has mentored over 100 physicians and scientists, some now leaders. He was the Editor-in-Chief of the journal STROKE, the leading publication of this field from 2000-2010. He introduced 9 international editions and a unique mentorship program for authors of developing countries. He was awarded The International Association of Gerontology Sandoz Prize for Gerontological research for his contributions “to advance scientific knowledge for the benefit of the elderly throughout the world”. He won the first Trillium Clinical Scientist Award “in recognition of outstanding research accomplishments & contributions to Ontario healthcare”. He received a Doctor honoris causa from the University of Salamanca, Spain, the Mihara Award of the International Stroke Society and the Willis Lecture Award, the American Stroke Association’s highest honor. He is a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences. In 2008 he was named to the Order of Canada, the country’s highest award. In 2010 he received the Ontario Premier’s Discovery Award in the Life Sciences & Medicine for “ground breaking research on the relationship between stroke and Alzheimer disease”, and the World Stroke Organization Leadership in Stroke Medicine Award: “Stroke: Committing to a World Agenda”. He won the 2011 International BIAL Merit Award in Medical Sciences for a monograph on “The Long Fuse: Silent Strokes and Insidious
Alzheimer Disease” and in 2012 received a Doctor honoris causa from the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences. In 2013, he was granted the Order of Ontario and a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal and was the Addison Lecturer and was awarded the Chancellor’s Award Lecture in Neuroscience and Neurology for his “contributions to neurological sciences and for outstanding academic leadership” at the University of Louisiana. He is past and first Canadian President of the World Federation of Neurology and the Founding Chair, World Brain Alliance. In 2014, Dr. Hachinski was the Allan & Maria Myers International Visiting Fellow at the Florey Neurosciences Institute, Melbourne, Australia, he received the Karolinska Stroke Research Award, he became the Brain Visiting Scholar at Oxford, Cambridge and London Universities and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. In 2015 he was awarded the Career Scientist Award from the Lawson Research Institute, Ontario, in 2016 the McLaughlin Medal of the Royal Society of Canada, recognizing “research of sustained excellence in medical science”, in 2017 the Prince Mahidol Award Laureate in the Field of Public Health. He will be inducted in the Canadian Medical Hall of Fame in 2018.