Developing a Field Deployable Assay System for Environmental Monitoring

There are currently over 9,000 potentially contaminated sites in Canada that require environmental assessment. The Field Deployable Assay (FDA) is a simple and cost-effective method for performing accurate environmental monitoring and site assessments. The FDAs are composed of a stationary main body and a variety of interchangeable cartridges. These cartridges act as miniature greenhouses, easily allowing for the monitoring of the growth of plants and fungus over an extended period.

Macrofungal biodiversity in coastal temperate rainforests of British Columbia

Coastal temperate rainforests hold a high biodiversity of living organisms, including many fungal species. The
diversity of fungi remain poorly described in forests of BC. In the proposed study, we will document these species
and improve our understanding of ecosystem complexity by gathering essential baseline information on fungal
communities. This will be useful for applied research and for the long-term monitoring these forests, particularly
when considering future climate change impacts. This project has two broad objectives that will target the
macrofungal community in forest ecosystems.

AAV Vectored Immunoprophylaxis for Prevention of Respiratory Infectious Diseases

This project aims to provide an alternative therapeutic for the prevention and treatment of the virus responsible for COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, as well as respiratory syncytial virus and influenza. Using a single viral vector platform, we will deliver antibodies from human survivors of these diseases to provide sustained levels of protection against the virus for all patients, including the elderly and immunocompromised. This project will help Avamab Pharma Inc.

Development of coconut oil-like seed oil through heterologous expression of thioesterases in Arabidopsis

Canola oil cannot be used in the margarine and surfactant industry in contrast to Cocos nucifera (coconut) that grows in tropical and subtropical regions. Although the canola industry is one of the most innovative, obtaining coconut oil-like canola seed oil has not been established yet. In this proposal, we will investigate multiple approaches to facilitate the development of a coconut oil-like seed oil in Arabidopsis. Our goal is to develop applied approaches to develop coconut oil-like canola seed oil, which will be an important supply for the Canadian industry.

Developing species-habitat conservation models for priority, wetland-dependent birds in Eastern Canada

Wetland-dependent birds, notably waterfowl, are prominent features of the conservation landscape in Eastern Canada, Ducks and geese in particular denote seasonality through their spectacular migrations, are key harvested species in many regions, and are often visible to connect the public with the sense of “wild”. However, populations of most of these species in Eastern Canada remain below targets set under the North American Waterfowl Conservation Plan, which may be due in part to threats or changes to breeding habitats.

The Tumour Cell Senescence Index: A Possible Tool to Identify Patients At High Risk of Treatment Failure During Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy

While promoting the destruction of the majority of tumour cells, chemotherapy treatment in cancer patients also permits chemo-resistant, senescent tumour cells to survive. Such senescent cells can live off dead tumour cells during and after chemotherapy. They can then form new tumours, resulting in disease progression. We have recently observed that chemotherapy treatment also induces strong degradation of an important macromolecule in tumour cells called ribosomal RNA.

Testing the use of novel stable isotope tools to determine nutrient sources in an eastern Canadian watershed

Cultural eutrophication, the excess input of nutrients by humans to waterbodies, is one of the biggest global threats to aquatic ecosystem health. Effective management of eutrophication requires the identification of nutrient (nitrogen and phosphorus) sources and their relative contributions to an aquatic system. This is difficult, because there can be sources in a single watershed. For instance, potential nutrient sources include runoff from agricultural, livestock, or urban areas, wastewater treatment effluent, pulp and paper mill effluent, and aquaculture operations.

Development of an innovative portable running analysis toolbox

Studying a person's running biomechanics has been limited to a laboratory setting due to the complex, expensive equipment needed to capture their motion and forces. Recent developments in wearable technologies may allow these measurements to be captured outside of the lab, which is not only a cost effective alternative, but may allow for the collection of data in a more "natural" environment. While these wearable sensors may represent the future for assessing a person's running pattern, they need to be compared with the current in-lab, gold-standard approaches to ensure they are valid.

Effects of plant mix, restoration year, and management regime of urban meadows on plant-pollinator network size, structure, and diversity

The purpose of this project is to identify bees and evaluate plant-pollinator networks based on the biomonitoring surveys conducted at the Meadoway in 2020-2021 with the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA). The aim of these surveys is to develop a baseline understanding of bee diversity in The Meadoway and evaluate the effects of plant mix, restoration age, and management regime to improve TRCA best practices for future projects. The intern will conduct timed bee surveys at the Meadoway at sites 1-5 years post restoration and on specific flowers.

Greenland shark bycatch mortality and mitigation in Canadian Arctic fisheries

Accidental fisheries catch ? or bycatch ? is a critical issue for conservation and fisheries management. Greenland sharks are a common bycatch in northern fisheries and are of concern because they are long-lived and may be vulnerable to overfishing.