The new Associate Director, Scientific, hopes to build on the strong foundation left by his predecessor. (Photo: UHN)

Dr. José Zariffa is no stranger to UHN's KITE Research Institute.

The Senior Scientist and Associate Professor with the University of Toronto trained as a graduate student and post-doctoral fellow in biomedical engineering at the Institute while also studying at U of T. For the past decade, Dr. Zariffa has served as a principal investigator with the Neural Engineering and Therapeutics (NET) Team.

With all of this impressive experience under his belt, it should come as no surprise to anyone that Dr. Zariffa has been appointed KITE's Associate Director, Scientific. He officially took over the role on July 1, succeeding Dr. Elizabeth Rochon, who stepped down from the role in June in order to retire, following a four-year term.

Dr. Zariffa's research focuses on developing technology to measure human function in order to create personalized and responsive approaches for treating central nervous system injuries, such as spinal cord injury or stroke. He has led a range of projects from studying the use of novel technologies to monitor hand function at home, to connecting assistive devices directly to the nervous system.

As he steps into his new position, Dr. Zariffa sat down to reflect on his goals for the future.

Q: How do you feel about being appointed Associate Director, Scientific, at KITE?

A: It's humbling. It's my responsibility to help KITE succeed and maintain its high quality of research. I take this very seriously as I want to do everything in my power to assist my colleagues by ensuring the Institute gives them the support necessary to continue doing their excellent research. 

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