Mātai Medical
Research Institute

World-leading research to enhance medical imaging capabilities
using advanced software, image-processing, and machine learning.

Who are we?

Mātai is a registered not-for-profit charitable trust and operates as an independent research institute, with national and global collaborations. Mātai Medical Research Institute (Mātai) is a world-leading medical research and education centre based in Tairāwhiti, and is focused on significantly advancing understanding of the roro (brain), manawa (heart) and tinana (body) in both health and well-being. 

Through our work in enhancing the capabilities of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) using new and advanced software, post-processing and artificial intelligence, we have the ability to deliver health, social, and economic benefits to the people of Tairāwhiti.

Want to know more about our clinical services?

Our Research

Our Community

MRI allows us to see inside the human body, providing non-invasive insights into injury and disease. It has great potential to further our understanding of brain and heart diseases. Using state-of-the-art MRI technologies and leading expertise, Mātai is focused on enhancing health outcomes for our community, particularly conditions that disproportionately affect Māori.

Our location, at the Gisborne Hospital/Te Whatu Ora Tairāwhiti ensures strong collaboration between scientists, doctors, and Iwi healthcare providers. These close collaborations will help us lead innovations in healthcare.

Our role extends beyond research: Mātai has the goal is also to inspire our people through career opportunities, training & education.

Community Health

Our whānau will have access to advanced equipment and expertise, resulting in earlier diagnosis and treatments.

Social Impact

By conducting research on medical conditions and technologies, being a vital role in improving healthcare outcomes, ultimately benefiting the community's overall well-being.

Inspiring Our Rangatahi

Our local rangatahi have opportunities to gain scholarships and internships, providing the pathway to future career's in the health and research field, while giving back to their community.

Future Campus Build

Coming soon...


Mātai Overview

Download the latest overview of our projects, engagements, and get the inside look to our strong team of knowledge.

Support our research

Mātai Medical Research Institute is a non-profit research institution dedicated to advancing our understanding of the brain, heart, and body to bring about health benefits not only locally but also on a global scale. We greatly value the support of individuals like you, as it plays a crucial role in furthering our mission.


Thank you for considering supporting Mātai Medical Research Institute and joining us on our mission to create a healthier future for all.

See Our Latest News

Sharing knowledge

Sharing knowledge

Mātai News Sharing knowledge: Mātai Medical Research Institute to host two-day symposium The Gisborne Herald, 16 November 2023 Full article here “The goal is to share knowledge to accelerate innovations that improve quality of life,” says Mātai chief executive and research director Dr Samantha Holdsworth. Some of the best scientific minds from New Zealand and overseas will be in Gisborne…

Sir Richard Faull bestowed kōrowai and tokotoko

Sir Richard Faull bestowed kōrowai and tokotoko

Mātai News Sir Richard Faull bestowed kōrowai and tokotoko for services to Māori and neuroscience Te Ao Māori News, 14 November 2023 Full article here After realising Māori weren’t participating in brain science because of tapu associated with the head, he set about developing whakanoa rituals within the University that are now standard practice. Sir Richard Faull (Ngāti Rāhiri, Te…

Cerebral Palsy & Muscle Development

Cerebral Palsy & Muscle Development

Mātai News Cerebral Palsy & Muscle Development RNZ, 04 October 2023 Listen here Cerebral palsy is the most common cause of physical disability for children in Aotearoa. An impairment in the developing brain either during pregnancy or shortly after birth leads to problems with movement and posture. Dr Geoffrey Handsfield of the Auckland Bioengineering Institute musculoskeletal modelling group wants to understand what is happening…


Mātai Tairāwhiti Relief Fund

Donation Information:

Account Name: Mātai Medical Research Institute
Account Number: 06-0645-0585640-01
Code: MTRF
Reference: Name & Contact Number (for receipt purposes)

For residents outside of New Zealand, please use the above account details and


Applicant Information:

Please complete the below application form, attach supporting documentation where necessary and send to b.allan@matai.org.nz

Where there is insufficient space, please feel free to attach supplementary notes. 

For general enquires please contact b.allan@matai.org.nz

Tairāwhiti Farming Recovery Fund

Donation Information:

Account Name: Mātai Medical Research Institute
Account Number: 06-0645-0585640-02
Code: FARM
Reference: Name & Contact Number (for receipt purposes)

For residents outside of New Zealand, please use the above account details and


Applicant information:

Gisborne Tairāwhiti Farmer Recovery Fund will contact farmers directly.

For further information please contact Jen Mildenhall 027 4100 773.