McMaster University was awarded three new Canada Research Chairs Friday, an honour that recognizes research achievement at universities in Canada.

Two of the new chairholders work in the Faculty of Health Science: Maureen Markle-Reid and Nathan Magarvey. Markle-Reid is a nursing professor who will be researching chronic disease in community living older adults and their family caregivers.

Magarey, an assistant professor in the biochemistry and biomedical sciences departments, will be researching ways to extract drugs from natural sources.

Catherine Connelly, an associate professor from the DeGroote school of business, was also awarded a chair and will researching a number of issues affecting businesses from how workers interpret to electronic communications to how leaders can still be effective in high-stress environments.

McMaster also announced Friday another researcher has had her chair renewed for five more years. Natalia Nikolova, a professor of electrical and computer engineering, will continue to develop novel engineering systems that harness the ability of microwaves to penetrate where sound and optical waves fail.

"Nikolova has already made significant advances in non-invasive diagnostics for early stage breast cancer detection, and concealed weapon detection for public security and surveillance in buildings and transportation," Michelle Donovan, public relations manager for the university, explained in a release.

The university was thrilled at the prestige of now having a total of 61 Canada research chairholders, said Mo Elbestawi, vice-president, Research and International Affairs.

"The Canada Research Chairs program provides our University with the opportunity to retain exceptional talent and to recognize the stellar research undertaken by Professors Connelly, Magarvey, Markle-Reid and Nikolova," he said.

"Their ambitious research programs will create knowledge that is vitally important to our quality of life, and will have a direct impact on the processes, policies and technologies that will shape Canada's future."

McMaster University has been allocated 68 Canada Research Chairs and currently have 61 chairholders.