Diseases such as cancer, heart disease and diabetes are the primary causes of death in Canadian adults and treating these and other illnesses costs the Canadian health care system billions of dollars annually. The researchers using Ontario Health Study data are investigating factors that increase the risk of developing various diseases, as well as what can be done to reduce the chance of developing them. These risk factors may include where people live and work, what they eat, how much they exercise, whether they smoke and other factors that have not yet been identified.


Atopic dermatitis and risk of hypertension, type-2 diabetes, myocardial infarction and stroke in a cross-sectional analysis from the Canadian Partnership for Tomorrow Project

Dr. Aaron Drucker’s group at Brown University used data from the Canadian Partnership for Tomorrow Project (CPTP) to look at whether atopic dermatitis is a risk factor for cardiovascular and other diseases.

Read the article in the British Journal of Dermatology.

Study examines mental health in common ethnic minorities in Ontario

A study out of York University using OHS survey data has found that ethnocultural minorities are more likely to report suffering mental health but are less likely to access treatment.

Read the article in BMC Psychiatry.

Read the article on OICR News.

Neighbourhood greenspace and health in a large urban centre

Using data from the Ontario Health Study and City of Toronto forestry records, researchers at the University of Chicago have shown the positive effect that living near trees can have on our health.

Read the article in Nature Scientific Reports.

Read an interview with researcher Dr. Marc Berman in the November 2015 issue of the OHS newsletter.

Research Underway

OHS Principal Investigator part of team awarded two grants from the Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR) to study the impact of environmental exposures and genetics

Dr. Philip Awadalla, the Ontario Health Study’s Principal Investigator, is part of a University of Toronto team that was recently awarded a $4 million grant from the Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR) for the Canadian Environmental Urban Health Research Consortium project.

The consortium will play a key role in supporting the research needed to address challenges such as urban sprawl, traffic congestion, car-dependency, social equity and sustainability. More than 80% of Canadians live in cities so it’s important that cities are designed in a way that support the health of those who live there.

The group is tasked with pulling together existing data and information from a wide variety of sources related to urban issues to create one resource. The data relates to aspects of urban living such air quality, green space, and noise and will then be linked to health data platforms such as the Ontario Health Study.

As well, Dr. Awadalla is the team leader for a Pan-Canadian initiative to understand how these environmental exposures interact with an individual’s genome to impact the development of chronic diseases and cancer. This study is supported by the CIHR programmatic initiative in Environments, Genes and Chronic disease.

Click here to learn more.

New funding from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research will help Ontario team study metabolic syndromes

Data and samples from the Ontario Health Study will be used to research a range of health conditions that increase the risk of serious disease.

Read the media release to find out more.