Biophysical characterization of synthesized fluorescently labeled biologically relevant phospholipids

The chemical synthesis of lipids with defined fatty acid side chains in terms of chain length and the degree of saturation/unsaturation is important to provide high-quality products for life science research. When dyes are added to the lipids, they can be used to a variety of biomedically relevant experiments by measuring be color and amount of signal collected in a light detector. Moreover, very important lipids need to be isolated and purified from natural sources.

Optimization of Bacteriophage Production for use in Treatment and Prevention of Bacterial Diseases in Swine

This project will involve research into the optimal production and purification methods for bacteriophages that are effective against bacterial infections in pigs. Cytophage’s bacteriophages will provide a highly effective, environmentally safe, and a cost competitive alternative to antibiotics in the pork industry. This project will benefit Cytophage by helping to advance our technology and product development.

Test package for digital microfluidic electrochemiluminescence assays

Portable medical tests that could be used in the clinic or at the patient’s home significantly reduce the time it takes to get a diagnostic result. To make them portable, miniaturized fluid handling systems are used to control and automate the test procedure. By combining these tests with sensitive detection strategies, we can use small volumes of samples, such as a finger prick of blood. Verv Tec of Sudbury Ontario is developing the next generation of portable medical testing systems and require assistance in developing and optimizing diagnostic tests.

Testing the biofiltration capacity of a hydroponic green wall system for airborne VOCs

Air pollution is linked to 7 million deaths worldwide, making air quality one of the top ten global causes of death. Eighty percent of Canadians live in cities, and growing evidence suggests that indoor air within the built environment has significant health impacts. Our research will evaluate the contaminant removal capabilities of an active ‘living wall’ biofilter designed by a Canadian company for residential use.

The use of a fast platform to design and develop anti-SARS-CoV-2 peptides for a therapeutic intervention of COVID-19

We are attempting to cure COVID-19! This is a very important initiative! Currently, no cure or vaccines are available to combat SARS-CoV-2. There is an immediate need to develop such therapies. The importance of developing a cure for COVID-19 cannot be overstated! Here, we propose an alternative approach to traditional drug development methods. Our approach provides a very fast and cost-effective method to develop anti-COVID-19 therapies. It is well established that the viral S protein that binds to the human ACE2 receptor.

Developing genomic and transcriptomic tools for analysis of cannabinoid producing yeast strains

The therapeutic potential of cannabinoids is well established. The study of these molecules is primarily based on their availability from the cannabis plant (Cannabis sativa). In addition to common cannabinoids, there are dozens of rare cannabinoids produced in C. sativa with potential therapeutic benefits that cannot be fully evaluated because of their scarcity. Thus, there is a need for alternative production methods for these molecules. Willow Analytics is developing yeast strains that are capable of producing two rare cannabinoids that cannot be practically sourced from cannabis plants.

Lynx Population and Landscape Genetics in NW Boreal Landscapes

Our project will use genomics to help understand how climate change and land use are impacting the coupled population dynamics of Canada lynx and snowshoe hares in boreal forests. The lynx-hare cycle is a key process regulating biodiversity the boreal forest food webs, which are increasingly under threat from climate-driven increases in wildfire, insect pests, and disease. We are developing genomic tools to help resource managers understand differences in regional lynx population dynamics and identify movement corridors of habitat that can help connect these regional populations.

Inclusion of Genetic Information to Better Inform Coffee Choices

Coffee is one of the world’s most popular beverages due to the delivery of caffeine and diverse flavours. The genetics of how caffeine is processed in the human body is fairly well understood. With the decrease in cost and increase in popularity of consumer genetics, we are interested in learning how modern genetic analysis techniques can benefit the choice of caffeine and flavour for coffee consumers.

Measuring up? Assessing approaches used to measure the effectiveness of protected areas at conserving biodiversity

The world is currently facing a biodiversity crisis driven by the loss and degradation of habitat resulting from the conversion of natural areas to agricultural land and urban development. To combat this biodiversity crisis, the government committed to Convention of Biological Diversity and national targets of protecting at least 17% of terrestrial land through network of protected areas. The goal of protected areas is to ensure that biodiversity is conserved, however, whether protected areas are effective at conserving biodiversity is debated.

Examining the role for intimal cell communication in early atherosclerosis

Atherosclerosis is a disease defined by unresolved inflammation in the major arteries. High cholesterol is a major risk factor, resulting in fatty lesions developing silently for decades before causing heart attacks and strokes. Currently, no therapies exist that target the cells of the artery wall to suppress this disease. Myeloid cells (MCs) are white blood cells found in the inner artery wall, residing under a barrier of cells called endothelial cells (ECs). In the aorta, MCs are found only in areas where lesions grow.

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