Principal Investigator

Rosemary Martino, MA, MSc, PhD

Dr. Rosemary Martino holds a Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Swallowing Disorders, is Professor of Speech-Language Pathology at the University of Toronto, and Senior Scientist at the Krembil Research Institute, University Health Network. She is an expert in the area of swallowing disorders (dysphagia) and clinical epidemiology.

The focus of Dr. Martino’s research is dysphagia, more particularly oropharyngeal dysphagia, secondary to neurological, cancer and cardiovascular etiologies. Dysphagia is an abnormality in swallowing physiology of the upper aerodigestive tract and a common consequence of diseases, including stroke, Parkinson’s disease, cardiovascular disease, and head and neck cancer. The presence of dysphagia can itself cause serious comorbidities. These comorbidities include pneumonia, malnutrition, dehydration, anxiety, depression, poor quality of life and even death. In sum, dysphagia is not only a consequence of diseases that are common in adults, but its presence can have serious sequelae, compromising patient health and overall recovery. Dr. Martino’s research aims to discover high-level evidence to determine whether swallowing interventions are beneficial in reducing or eliminating these unnecessary consequences.

As part Dr. Martino’s research, she developed two dysphagia-related tools – one called the TOR-BSST© for early detection of dysphagia and the other called the MOD to measure medical consequences of dysphagia. This work has established the necessary groundwork for Dr. Martino’s ongoing body of work aiming to establish high-level evidence that early detection of dysphagia reduces medical consequences in adult patients with dysphagia, across all etiologies. These findings will be the first available to help patients with dysphagia and will, as such, guide implementation of practice guidelines regarding early detection protocols. More broadly, findings from Dr. Martino’s research will impact future scientific inquiry in swallowing disorders and enable the efficient direction of limited clinical resources to swallowing treatments with proven health value.

Dr. Martino has published over 80 papers, abstracts, chapters and books. She has given over 250 lectures worldwide. She currently leads a research team of 3 graduate students, 2 clinical research coordinators, and a lab manager. Dr. Martino owns 1 copyright. As principal investigator, Dr. Martino has obtained over 27 grants totaling over $10 million.

View Dr. Martino’s research profile on: PubMed | Scopus | Publons | ORCID | ResearchGate


Post-Doctorate Mentorship – Advanced Measurement Science (2004-2007) Baycrest, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Supervisor: Dr. David Streiner)

CIHR New Investigator Award in Knowledge Translation (2004-2006) Ottawa University, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

PhD, Clinical and Evaluative Sciences / Health Outcomes (1999-2004) Institute of Medical Science, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Supervisor: Dr. Nicholas Diamant). Thesis title: Measuring Impairment Consequences in Adult Patients with Dysphagia.

MSc, Clinical Epidemiology, Health Policy, Management and Evaluation (1995-1999) University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Supervisor: Dr. Gaylene Pron). Thesis title: Oropharyngeal Dysphagia: Reported Practice Patterns of Speech-Language Pathologists.

MA, Speech-Language Pathology (1985-1987) University at Buffalo, State University of New York, Buffalo, New York, United States

Current Appointments at the University of Toronto

Professor, Speech-Language Pathology

Professor, School of Graduate Studies

Professor, Rehabilitation Science (Graduate)

Professor, Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery

Director, Swallowing Disorders Lab

Current Appointments at the University Health Network

Senior Scientist, Health Care & Outcomes Research, Krembil Research Institute/University Health Network

Director, Swallowing Disorders Lab

Distinctions Awards (Major)

2018- 2023  – Canada Research Chair (Tier II) in Swallowing Disorders. Canada Research Chairs Programs

2013 – 2018  – Canada Research Chair (Tier II) in Swallowing Disorders, Canada Research Chairs Program.

2012 – BRS-S Award for best oral paper from a Speech-Language Pathologist, Dysphagia Research Society.

2012 – Fellow of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), ASHA, United States.

2002 – Best of the Best Practices Award, Ontario Hospital Association, Canada.

Research Awards (Major)

2004 – Postdoctoral Fellowship. Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada

2001 – Postdoctoral Fellowship. Canadian Stroke Network

2001 – Postdoctoral Fellowship. Canadian Institutes of Health Research / Canadian Lung Association

2001 – Postdoctoral Fellowship. Canadian Institutes of Health Research / Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada

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