Rotstein, Benjamin

Benjamin Rotstein, PhD, is an associate professor in the Department of Biochemistry, Microbiology and Immunology at the University of Ottawa, and director of the Molecular Imaging Probes and Radiochemistry Laboratory at the University of Ottawa Heart Institute.


Dr. Rotstein obtained his BSc from Dalhousie University and the University of King’s College in Halifax, NS, and his PhD in organic chemistry from the University of Toronto. His doctoral research focused on the reactivity of amphoteric molecules and their applications in macrocyclization of peptides. He then undertook postdoctoral training in radiochemistry and molecular imaging at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital, where he was promoted to faculty in 2015. During his postdoctoral work, he discovered spirocyclic iodonium ylides for radiofluorination and contributed to the development of new enzyme and receptor tracers for positron emission tomography.

Dr. Rotstein’s previous training was supported by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) in the form of postgraduate scholarships and a postdoctoral fellowship. He has received Young Investigator Awards from the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging as well as the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF). He also received an Early Researcher Award from the Ontario Ministry of Research Innovation and Science. He has served on grant panels with the Canadian Institutes of Mental Health Research and other science funding organizations. He held a leadership role within the Society for Radiopharmaceutical Sciences Think Tank from 2016–2020.

Dr. Rotstein’s research is funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, Canadian Arrhythmia Network,  the Canadian Foundation for Innovation (CFI), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), and the Ontario Ministry of Research, Innovation and Science. In addition to UOHI and uOttawa Faculty of Medicine, Dr. Rotstein holds appointments in the Department of Chemistry at uOttawa and the Royal’s Institute for Mental Health Research.

Research and clinical interests

Research in the Molecular Imaging Probes and Radiochemistry Laboratory is directed towards the discovery of radiopharmaceuticals for both studying biochemical and pharmaceutical mechanisms in living systems, and diagnosis of disease conditions. Specific cardiovascular imaging targets include ones relevant for atherosclerosis, arrhythmias, valve disease, and heart failure. In support of these goals the lab also develops innovative chemical methodologies for small molecule bioconjugation with short-lived radioactive isotopes such as carbon-11 and fluorine-18.


See current publications list at PubMed.

Selected publications:

Rotstein, Benjamin

Rotstein, Benjamin

Rotstein, Benjamin


Appointments and affiliations

University of Ottawa Heart Institute

Molecular Imaging Probes and Radiochemistry Laboratory
University of Ottawa Heart Institute;

Associate Professor
Department of Biochemistry, Microbiology and Immunology
Faculty of Medicine
University of Ottawa