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J. Spence

J. David Spence CM, MD, FRCPC, FAHA

Professor of Neurology and Clinical Pharmacology and Director, Stroke Prevention & Atherosclerosis Research Centre, Robarts Research Institute, Western University, London, Ontario, Canada

Professor Spence has focused on prevention of stroke throughout his career. He pioneered the measurement of 2-dimensional carotid total plaque area beginning in 1986, and since 1994 has collaborated with Prof. Aaron Fenster and Dr. Grace Parraga at the Robarts Research Institute in measurement of 3D plaque volume, plaque ulceration and assessment of vulnerable plaque. His research program focuses on measurement of atherosclerosis by ultrasound, for patient management, genetic research and for assessing effects of new therapies. He pioneered a new approach to vascular prevention − “treating arteries instead of treating risk factors” − that has markedly reduced risk among high-risk patients with carotid stenosis. Other areas of expertise include vitamin therapy for homocysteine, the clinical pharmacology of stroke prevention, physiologically individualized therapy for resistant hypertension, identification of high-risk asymptomatic carotid stenosis and the role of the intestinal microbiome in atherosclerosis. His publications include 4 books and over 500 publications in peer-reviewed journals. In 2015 he received the Research Excellence Award from the Canadian Society for Atherosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology. In 2019 he was appointed to the Order of Canada, “for his contributions to the understanding of atherosclerosis and Stroke Prevention.

B.A. University of Western Ontario 1965

M.D. University of Western Ontario 1970

Fellowship in Clinical Pharmacology at the Cardiovascular Research Institute, University of California at San Francisco 1974-76