Preparatory research to enable the implementation of a multi-site research project: Getting it right - Pharmacist-led pharmacogenetic testing in community pharmacies

Making sure patients have well controlled post-operative pain is imperative for patient well-being, optimal recovery, and to prevent chronic pain from developing. Opioid medications are often used to treat post-surgical pain, but some people respond in unpredictable ways and this may be related to their genetics. Pharmacogenetic (PGx) testing is a way of finding out how people’s genes affect the way they respond to medications.

Effects of a Virtual Reality Exercise Program on Sleep Quality in Assisted Living Residents

Older adults are the largest growing segment of the Canadian population. Almost 40% of men and 59% of women aged 65 to 79 years experience sleep disturbances. Non-pharmacological interventions, such as educational programs and exercise, can improve quality of life of older individuals by enhancing sleep quality. Although strong evidence suggests that virtual reality (VR) programs are effective for improving mood, memory, and cognitive performance, little is known about the effect of VR exercises on sleep quality.

Development of specific peptide antagonists of muscarinic receptors to repair the nervous system

Drugs that block muscarinic receptors are able to enhance nerve repair in various diseases of the peripheral nervous system. In collaboration with WinSanTor Inc based in San Diego, USA, the laboratory of Dr. Paul Fernyhough at University of Manitoba now plans to develop novel peptide antagonists that also block the muscarinic receptor. These peptides will provide new intellectual property and permit testing of efficacy to prevent disease in animal models of neuropathy.

Implementation of risk minimization measures and trends over time in the frequency of outcomes

Opioid-related harms such as abuse, misuse, addiction, diversion and overdose have been rising exponentially, a phenomenon referred to as the opioid epidemic. The current research will examine federal and provincial risk minimization measures (RMMs) regarding the opioid epidemic starting in 2016. We will develop a landscape of federal and provincial opioid RMMs, describe trends over time in the number and types of RMMs, assess the association between RMMs and public awareness and the association between RMMs and opioid-related harms.

Validation of Selective Phytocannabinoids Using In Vitro Glaucoma Models

Glaucoma is the second leading cause of blindness in the world, mainly induced by increased pressure in the eye. Marijuana has been shown to reduce such pressure, thus benefit glaucoma patients. In the previous project, we screened several individual components from marijuana extracts and tested their ability on keeping cells alive. The current project puts an emphasis on neuroprotection and therapeutic aspects of glaucoma. We propose to target and analyse the effect of our selected compound for major downstream pathways that are significantly modulated in to Glaucoma pathology.

Assessment of DNA Ministring technology in cell transfection and the treatment of Colorectal Cancer (CRC) - Year two

Despite the power of gene therapy, its successful application to medicine has been diminished due to: (i) high toxicities and potentially fatal adverse effects; (ii) poor transgene expression in target cells; and (iii) extensive vector degradation. While viral vectors greatly improve efficiency, they sometimes lead to cancers due to chromosomal integration and may suffer from a lack of desired tissue selectivity. In contrast, nonviral systems have proven safer, but less efficient.

Novel Treatments for bladder inflammation and pain

Interstitial cystitis is an inflammatory disease of the urinary bladder and is recognized as a serious medical condition associated with a profoundly negative impact on patients? quality of life. Currently, there are no widely acknowledged causes of this disorder and no effective treatments available. Panag is a Halifax based drug company which focuses on development of novel therapeutic treatments which can be used to alleviate both pain and inflammation associated with IC. The goal of our research is to provide IC patients with symptom and pain relief, as well as to improve outcome.

Cannabis used for medical purposes by children in Canada

Cannabis products are being used for a variety of conditions. In Canada, there are no cannabis products approved for use in children. Without evidence from clinical trials doctors are hesitant to recommend cannabis products for children. In order for doctors to feel confident in advising parents on medical cannabis they need better information on if these products work, how to dose them and long-term safety. Our national collaboration between parents, doctors, researchers, industry and policy makers will study the use of medical cannabis in children.

Fibrostenotic Crohn’s disease: Regulation of Fibrosis and inflammation with Cannabigerol and other cannabinoids

The goal of the project is to determine if the cannabis-derived, non-psychoactive compound, cannabigerol (CBG) (a key component of Cannabis), which is known to reduce inflammation in a mouse model of colon inflammation, can also prevent intestinal strictures (fibrosis) and narrowing of the intestine in the setting of intestinal inflammation. We will use cell culture and animal models that develop key features of fibrosis, to determine if CBG can prevent fibrosis and stricture formation.

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.