Developing a High Throughput RNA Synthesis and Purification Microfluidic Platform

Modern molecular techniques increasingly rely on high quality synthetic RNA molecules. One of the most important examples of this is the CRISPR-Cas genome editing technology. However, synthesis of RNA molecules important for this process suffer from a number of limitations including being slow and expensive. In order to accelerate research and development in this important area of science we propose to develop a new platform for synthesizing high quality RNAs, cheaply and in large amounts.

Quantification of Intra-Host Diversity of Piscine orthoreovirus (PRV-1) Infecting Atlantic and Chinook Salmon in BC

The decline in many populations of wild Pacific salmon is of great concern given their critical importance to First Nations, the ecosystems of the Pacific Northwest, and wild and farmed fisheries. The conservation efforts of the Pacific Salmon Foundation (PSF) have provided opportunity for research into infectious diseases like Heart and Skeletal Muscle Inflammation (HSMI) and jaundice/anemia that may contribute to these declines. Piscine orthoreovirus (PRV) causes HSMI in Norwegian Atlantic salmon.

Development of testing & quality control methods for e-textiles

From the invention and commercialization points of view, the world of the textile industry has been undergoing revolutionary changes at an unprecedented speed with novel research works in the field of textile processing chemicals, fibres and yarns, technical textiles, and now e-textiles (electronic textiles). E-textiles have massive potentials to change the health care, safety, and protection industries due to their unique capability to sense physiological and environmental conditions, alert about a potential issue, and mitigate the change in conditions.

Fish passage and the importance of sea-run brook trout in small coastal watersheds in Prince Edward Island

Diadromous native salmonid species in coastal areas have been impacted by a multitude of factors including poor fish passage for over a century, and by an introduced salmonid, the rainbow trout. The overall goal of this study is to examine the impact of fishway improvement and anadromy, or the lack thereof, on brook trout populations. This research will provide data to inform coastal restoration efforts, particularly fish passage/fishway design, and generate new knowledge useful to the assessment environmental flows and the impacts of the introduction of non-native fish species.

Epigenetic effects of smolt-to-adult rearing in Atlantic Salmon

Stocking remains an important component of managing and conserving Atlantic Salmon populations, but it also has the potential to cause negative effects to wild populations. To understand the cause of these effects and the potential consequences of using a smolt-to-adult supplementation approach we will use cutting edge technology to investigate epigenetic changes in captive reared salmon. Epigenetic changes do not alter the genetic makeup of the fish but cause changes in the way genes are expressed which can affect their ability to survive.

Measuring the contributions of non-crop areas to precision canola yield

Canola growers recognize that the beneficial arthropods that live in natural habitats and non-crop areas may play an important role in augmenting and stabilizing crop yields. These bees, flies, beetles, spiders and other arthropods may spill over into the crop, and through pollination or pest control, help to improve yields, decrease inputs, and increase profitability. A postdoctoral fellow will assess the relationship between natural habitats and canola yield that may result from these spillover effects, or other ecosystem services.

Connecting ecological dots through striped bass diets by using DNA barcoding and stable isotopes

Striped bass invaded Labrador, Newfoundland and Labrador in August 2017 and were identified to feed on Atlantic salmon and capelin; two important fishes to NunatuKavut Community Council (NCC). This project aims to sample striped bass in Labrador to identify what it is consuming. We will combine traditional stomach content morphological identification with a new approach for identifying stomach contents using DNA from the partially digested stomach “goo”. Species-specific DNA fragments (primers) will be used to identify prey through methods like the ‘barcode of life’ project.

The control of pathogen infection in Cannabis sativa

The cannabis boom in Canada is reaching a full swing. At the same time, the research on agricultural and medicinal cannabis is still lagging behind. Cannabis is typically grown at high density in the contained environment. Such conditions lead to high pathogen pressure. Fungal pathogens like those causing powdery mildew, grey and white mold result in a significant decrease in yield and sometimes even in a loss of entire crop or a recall of various products.

Management and conservation of polar bears in Davis Strait: An integrated population modeling approach to estimating population size, growth rate and Total Allowable Harvest of a priority species in Nunavut, Canada.

Estimates of population size and structure of the Davis Strait polar bear population are uncertain due, in large part, to the prohibitive costs of conducting regular aerial surveys. In recent years, Inuit have indicated that increased bear abundance has resulted in public safety concerns. In addition, Inuit believe that polar bears have negatively impacted other wildlife through increased consumption of seals, and eggs in bird colonies.

Treating the Untreatable: Targeting Paediatric Brain Tumours with Multi-omics and Drug Discovery - Year two

Brain tumours, including ependymoma, are some of the most difficult cancers to treat. Although the past few years have seen many exciting advances in characterizing these brain tumours, there are few effective therapies available for patients, many of whom are children and young adults (and for whom long-term side effects can be extremely damaging). Until very recently, research in this area has been hampered by a complete lack of cell lines and animal models.

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