Dr. Johanna Lake



  • Doctorate of Philosophy, McMaster University
  • Master of Science, McMaster University
  • Bachelor of Arts Honours, University of Western Ontario

Research Interests

My current postdoctoral research is broadly focused on the health and well-being of individuals with developmental disabilities. More specifically I am involved in the Secret Agent Society: Operation Regulation (SAS:OR) program, studying and delivering cognitive behavioural therapy to children with neurodevelopmental disorders. I am particularly interested in how this therapy affects change in child emotion regulation and parent co-regulation. I am also interested in supporting caregivers of individuals with developmental disabilities using Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT).

Selected Published Manuscripts

Lake, J.K., Cardy, S., & Humphreys, K.R. (2010). Animacy and word order in individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 40, 1161-1164.

Lake, J.K., Balogh, R., & Lunsky, Y. Polypharmacy profiles and predictors among adults with autism spectrum disorders (2012). Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 6, 1142-1149.

Lake, J.K., Perry, A., & Lunsky, Y. (2014). Mental health services for adolescents and adults with high functioning autism spectrum disorder: Underserved and overlooked. Autism Research and Treatment, Article ID 502420 http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2014/502420

Balogh, R., Lake, J.K., Lin, E., Wilton, D., & Lunsky, Y. (2014). Disparities in diabetes prevalence and preventable hospitalizations in persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities: A population study. Diabetic Medicine. doi: 10.1111/dme.12573

Lunsky, Y., Lake, J.K., Durbin, J., Perry, A., Bullock, H, Morris, S., & Lee, J.S. (2014).  Understanding and improving care for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities in the emergency department.  International Review of Research in Developmental Disabilities, 47, 1-37. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-12-800278-0.00001-4

Vogan, V., Lake, J. K., Weiss, J., Robinson, S., Tint, A., & Lunsky, Y. (2014). Factors associated with caregiver burden among parents of individuals with ASD: Differences across intellectual functioning. Family Relations. doi: 10.1111/fare.12081

Vogan, V., Lake, J.K., Tint, A., Weiss, J.A., & Lunsky, Y. (2016). Tracking health care service use and the experiences of adults with autism spectrum disorder without intellectual disability: A longitudinal study of service rates, barriers and satisfaction. Disability and Health Journal, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.dhjo.2016.11.002

Lake, J.K., McMorris, C., & Lunsky, Y. (2016). Specialized and Mainstream Psychiatric or Mental Health Services for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities. In C. Hemmings & N. Bouras (Eds.), Psychiatric and Behavioural Disorders in Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. (3rd ed.).

Lake, J. K., Denton, D., Lunsky, Y., Shui, A. M., Veenstra-VanderWeele, J., & Anagnostou, E. (2017). Medical Conditions and Demographic, Service and Clinical Factors Associated with Atypical Antipsychotic Medication Use Among Children with An Autism Spectrum Disorder. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 1-12. doi: 10.1007/s10803-017-3058-8

Selected Conference Presentations

Lake, J.K., Azimi, K., & Lunsky, Y. Polypharmacy profiles and predictors among adults with autism spectrum disorders. Presented at the 2012 International Meeting for Autism Research (IMFAR).

Lake, J.K., McMorris, C., & Lunsky, Y. Crisis in adults with autism spectrum disorders: antecedents and outcomes. Presented at the 2013 International Meeting for Autism Research (IMFAR).

Morris, S., Lake, J.K., Perry, A., & Lunsky, Y. Emergency Department Visits. Presented at the 2013 Annual National Association for Dual Diagnosis Conference.

Denton, D., Lake, J.K., Lunsky, Y., Anagnostou, E., & Veenstra-Vander Weele, J. Treatment Choices in Autism Spectrum Disorders. Presented at the 2013 American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry 60th Annual Meeting.

Lake, J.K., Vogan, V., Sawyer, A., Weiss, J.A., & Lunsky, Y. Parent perspectives on psychotropic medication use and prescribing health care providers among adolescents and young adults with ASD. Presented at the 2014 American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities


  • 2016 The development of virtual mindfulness groups for adults with ASD and families. Autism Speaks Canada (Role: Co-investigator)
  • 2015 The evolving health and social needs of adults with developmental disabilities and complex mental health problems: A needs assessment project. Ministry of Community and Social Services. (Role: Co-investigator)
  • 2015 PRIV-SENSE: Privacy, security, and ethics of the use of emerging technologies: development and validation of a framework for research and policy, AGE-WELL NCE Inc.  (Role: Co-investigator)
  • 2015 Mom to mom: Evaluation of a group intervention to improve the health and wellbeing of mothers of individuals with ASD. The Women’s College Hospital $15K Women’s Xchange Challenge. (Role: Principal Investigator)
  • 2015 Faculty Teaching Award, Excellence in Small Group Teaching, Mississauga Academy of Medicine, University of Toronto
  • 2011 CAMH Postdoctoral Fellowship Award


Email: jlake@yorku.ca