Farm to Fork: DNA traceability of poultry meat in North America Year Two

In the recent years, the concern for food safety and quality has been on the increase. This concern is escalated by media reports of food alteration, which in turn reduces the consumers’ confidence in food safety and the reliability of labelling. As such, traceability in agricultural/food chain is an essential tool to increase consumers’ trust. Although various traceability systems are currently in place, challenges exist in maintaining farm to fork traceability, thereby highlighting the need for development of reliable tools for food analysis.

Water-Safe UV Curable Antimicrobials Nanoscale coatings for Plastics

The treatment of Hospital acquired infections from pathogenic bacteria continues to be a serious and significant burden on health care resources both nationally and globally. Currently, about 1 in 10 persons will acquire an HAI as result of a medical procedure which can result in an additional hospital stay, treatment and in some severe cases, death. To counter HAI’s, we propose the use of a new UV-curable antimicrobial coatings which will protect common touch surfaces (hospital beds, plastic items) from pathogenic bacteria.

Pediatric Cancer Drivers: From Target Discovery to Clinical Translation

This research cluster, a joint initiative between the Sorensen Lab at UBC and the Morin Lab at SFU with a number of key partners, involves a multidisciplinary approach to better understand the role of genetic changes in individual types of pediatric cancer, and how we might use this information to design better treatments for these diseases.

An omics study of plant responses to non-oncogenic Agrobacterium infection Year Two

Time-course biochemical and transcriptomic (gene expression) analysis of Nicotiana benthamiana in response to Agrobacterium infection and monoclonal antibody (mAB) expression. Host response to Agrobacterium infection may provide insight into novel approaches to increase recombinant protein production. Understanding changes in host gene expression may help identify targets for future engineering to limit negative impacts on the host due to infection and recombinant gene expression. Differential gene expression analysis may also reveal specific up-regulated host defenses (e.g.

Control of point source low volume methane emission using methanobiofiltration technology

Methane is a key greenhouse gas (GHG), and atmospheric methane emissions in Alberta are associated with a variety of industry sectors: sanitary landfills, wood waste landfills, feedlot operations and the oil and gas sector. When the quantities released at individual locations are relatively small, this methane cannot be used as an energy source; therefore, environmentally acceptable methods are needed for their control. Recent research has shown that methanotrophic bacteria are capable of converting methane to carbon dioxide without producing toxic by-products.

Development of simple methods to isolate group 2 innate lymphoid cells

Group 2 innate lymphoid cells (ILC2s) are recently discovered lymphocytes that have innate ability to produce a specific set of hormone-like proteins called cytokines. While the importance of ILC2s in allergic diseases including asthma have been implicated by recent reports, the progress in our understanding of ILC2s has been hampered by the fact that they are rather rare lymphocytes and difficult to detect or isolate. The goal of our project is to develop rapid and simple method to isolate ILC2s from mice and humans.

Statistical advancements in the analysis of migratory movements using a novel broad-scale automated radio-telemetry array.

Partnerships among researchers and corporations are continually pushing the advancement of animal tracking technology, allowing smaller animals to be tracked for longer periods, over greater spatial scales, and at finer scale spatial resolutions. Yet the statistical analyses of these data is lagging behind. Using a novel, state-of-the-art network of 57 automated telemetry arrays distributed across southern Ontario, we will develop statistical methodologies to quantify the migratory movements of birds.

Assessment of the neuroprotective effects of a novel natural product derived formulation in a rodent model of Parkinson’s disease

A number of natural products including ginseng, green tea catechins and the essential fatty acids DHA and EPA display neurosupportive and neuroprotective qualities. These bioactive compounds may be useful in preventing various forms of neuronal cell loss, including the degeneration observed in Parkinson’s disease.

Impacts of hydroelectricity production on aquatic ecosystems: Development of key environmental indicators for Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) approach

In boreal and temperate regions, dams are mainly constructed to provide ecosystem services such as hydroelectricity production. River impoundment and the alteration of natural hydrological regimes are suggested to be major disturbances to aquatic ecosystems. To meet long-term environmental objectives for sustainable development, Hydro-Quebec recently adopted the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) approach. LCA is an ISO standardized approach assessing the potential environmental impacts of product, services and processes throughout its entire life cycle.

Mahseer on the move: Exploring the post-release behaviour and movement of mahseer (Tor spp.) after catch-and-release angling using biotelemetry

Recreational fishing is a popular activity worldwide that contributes an estimated $190B USD in expenditures to the global economy each year. Contrasting the economic benefits of the activity is an array of ecological and biological impacts. Catch-and-release fishing, the act of returning a fish to water (presumably unharmed) after landing, has become an increasingly popular strategy to mitigate these impacts. Yet, different species respond differently to catch-and-release practices.