Martha Funabashi

BSc, MSc, PhD

Clinical Research Scientist, Division of Research, Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College

Martha Funabashi 018.JPG


Researchgate: Martha_Funabashi


Research interests and skills

Dr. Martha Funabashi is a Clinical Research Scientist at the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College (CMCC). Her research interest involves the safety aspects spinal manipulative therapies (SMTs), including the development and implementation of a trusting environment promoting patient safety culture for SMT providers.

Her research interests is also on the underlying mechanisms of SMT and investigating safety aspects of SMT through basic science. Dr. Funabashi also has an interest in knowledge dissemination and translation, reducing the gap between what is known to what is done in clinical practice. In addition to her degrees, she also has a certification as a clinical osteopath and has a certification as a clinical research manager.


  • Patient safety and SMT

  • Adverse events following SMT

  • SMT force characterization

  • SMT underlying mechanisms


Ongoing research

  • Prevalence and risk factors of developing musculoskeletal pain in university students

  • Active surveillance to collect adverse events after spinal manipulation therapy

  • A Survey on patient safety attitudes and opinions

  • Lumbar spine biomechanical testing


Research publications

  • Funabashi M, Nougarou F, Descarreaux M, Prasad N, Kawchuk G. Does the application site of spinal manipulative therapy alter spinal tissues loading? The Spine Journal, 2018; 18: 1041-52.

  • Funabashi M, Nougarou F, Descarreaux M, Prasad N, Kawchuk G. New Investigator Award-Winning Paper. The influence of spinal manipulative therapy force magnitude and application site on spinal tissue loading: A biomechanical robotic serial dissection study in porcine motion segments. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, 2017 Jul-Aug; 40(6): 387-96. [Download here]

  • Funabashi M, Nougarou F, Descarreaux M, Prasad N, Kawchuk G. Spinal tissue loading created by different methods of spinal manipulative therapy (SMT) application. Spine (Phila pa 1976), 2017 May 1; 42(9): 635-43. [Download here]

  • Funabashi M, Kawchuk G, Vette AH, Goldsmith P, Prasad N. Tissue loading created during spinal manipulation in comparison to loading created by passive spinal movements. Sci Rep 2016 Dec 1; 6:38107; doi:10.1038/srep38107. [Download here]

  • Funabashi M, El-Rich M, Prasad N, Kawchuk G. Quantification of loading in biomechanical testing: the influence of dissection sequence. J Biomech 2015 Jun 26; 48(12):3522–6.

  • Erwin WM, DeSouza L, Funabashi M, Kawchuk G, Karim MZ, Kim S, Maedler S, Matta A, Wang X, Mehrkens A. The biological basis of degenerative disc disease: proteomic and biomechanical analysis of the canine intervertebral disc. Arthritis Res Ther 2015 Sep 5; 17(1):240. [Download here]