Platform development to assay immune cell chemotaxis in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is an important global health problem afflicting 384 million people and causing 3 million deaths worldwide each year. Currently, there are no effective therapies for COPD patients. In this proposal, we are developing a novel technology that will both monitor the severity of disease in COPD patients, and allow researchers to better study potential targets and pathways for the design of new COPD drugs. Immune cells, such as neutrophils and macrophages, play important roles in the lungs of COPD patients.

ATP citrate lyase (ACLY) as a novel anti-cancer drug target for hepatocellular carcinoma

The net 5-year survival rate for patients suffering from liver cancer is less then 20 percent and the number of cases is rapidly increasing in Canada. Unfortunately, currently available oral chemotherapies can only extend median survival by 3 - 4 months making the development of new and effective drug treatments critical. The proposed study aims to pave the way for a new class of drugs to help fight liver cancer and give hope to patients suffering from this deadly disease.

Effect of ROS on neurovascular decoupling in epilepsy

In order for the brain to function well, it is important that blood vessels within the brain are healthy. In a healthy brain, these blood vessels can become larger and smaller when necessary, but this is no longer possible after epileptic seizures. An important group of compounds that regulate the size of blood vessels is ROS, but too much ROS is unhealthy for the brain. Therefore, we believe that too much ROS is produced during epileptic seizures. Luckily, the brain also contains antioxidants, which can normally clear the brain from ROS, but possibly not enough during epilepsy.

Evaluation of MRI-based estimation of cortical thickness

The most important structure in the human brain is the cerebral cortex. It makes it possible to perceive our visual environment and sounds, to perform motoric actions such as grasping an object, to speak, to understand speech, etc. The cerebral cortex is a 2-5 mm thick sheet, embedded in the skull. Analysis of MRI data makes it possible to estimate the thickness of the cerebral cortex. In certain neurological conditions such as mild cognitive impairment, Alzheimer's disease and multiple sclerosis, the thickness of specific cortical areas decreases faster than in healthy aging.

Efficacy of CB1R inverse agonists for enhancing insulin secretion in mouse and human islets, ex vivo, and for preventing cytokine-induced ?-cell death in human islets

Inversago and CR-CHUM will collaborate to evaluate new generation Cannabinoid-1 receptor (CB1) blockers for the treatment and/or prevention of type-1 and type-2 diabetes. Previous generations of CB1 blockers have shown their promise in treating several features of the metabolic syndrome, including obesity, type-2 diabetes and liver diseases. However, they were plagued with important psychiatric adverse effects which eventually caused the termination of all development and commercial efforts.

A Novel Bone Anabolic Treatment in a Mouse Model of Osteogenesis Imperfecta

Osteogenesis imperfecta (OI) is a heritable disorder that causes bone fractures. The drugs that are used at present help to decrease the number of fractures by about half, but most people with OI have many fractures despite receiving currently available treatments. Mesentech Inc has developed a new drug that has shown a strong effect on bone formation in rats. In this project, we will test the effect of this drug in a mouse model of OI. The new drug will be injected three times per week during a period of four weeks and the effect on bone strength will be assessed.

Radiofrequency Treatment for Emphysema in Mouse Model

Emphysema, a lung disease that millions of Canadians currently suffer from, has few safe and non-invasive options available. One of the features of emphysema is the lack of proper blood flow in the diseased lungs and this results in poor gas exchange. IKOMED Technologies Inc. has been developing a new technology that has the potential to remove diseased lungs non-surgically. The initial proof-of-concept experiments have already been tested and validated using rat models with Dr. Don Sin.

Effects of a digital lifestyle change program on prediabetes indicators, health outcomes and cost effectiveness.

The number of Canadians living with diabetes is at an all-time high as are the consequential healthcare costs. A scalable solution to this public health crisis is needed. The aim of this research project is to evaluate Transform, a digital health program created by Blue Mesa Health. The program is designed to prevent diabetes by helping people adopt healthier lifestyles. By analyzing existing Transform participant metrics and program outcomes, the intern will seek to understand the nature of the program’s impact on diabetes prevention.

Preventing medication errors in patients with low kidney function.

Patients with low kidney function need to take certain medications at a lower dose because their kidneys cannot filter the medication as well from the body. Taking medications at a high dose may be harmful to a patient and lead sometimes to death. The aim of my research is to help reduce medication errors in patients with low kidney function. I will do this by conducting several large studies to determine optimal medication dosing for patients with low kidney function.