Exploring the Potential of Convalescent Plasma Therapy as an Intervention in the Pandemic Response

Convalescent plasma--used for over a century as the first treatment option in outbreaks caused by novel pathogens. The therapy involves transfusion of blood plasma from recovered donors, which contains antibodies, that can prevent or treat infection in recipients. Convalescent plasa therapy has been observed empirically or in small studies to confer passive immunity to susceptible or already infected recipients. Very little rigorous evidence has been available to confirm safety, effectiveness, appropriate target population and delivery strategies of this therapy for specific pathogens.

Piece of Mind: arts-based knowledge translation of Parkinson's disease research and lived experience

academic sphere, and limit interactions with the stakeholder community. This project promotes meaningful collaboration for the co-construction of knowledge around Parkinson's disease (PD), using the performing arts as an interactive tool for knowledge translation. Piece of Mind brings together researchers, performing artists, and persons affected by PD to create a performance piece based on scientific research and lived experience.

Development of a Sustainable Program Quality Improvement Framework using a Balanced Scorecard Methodology at Family Services Ottawa

FSO (Family Services Ottawa) is a not-for-profit social service agency whose mission is to assist individuals, to build on their strengths and to improve their mental health. FSO does so by providing counselling, education, and advocacy within a context of working to foster systemic change. Although their programs are increasingly monitored and evaluated at the program level, FSO does not currently have a tool to assess and monitor their organization as a whole.

Developing a machine learning-based diagnostic strategy to detect early onset of double negative prostate cancer by integrating SEMA3C-associated genomic variations and blood biopsies

The main goal of this research project is to study if a protein named SEMA3C can be a biomarker for early detection of an aggressive and lethal form of prostate cancer, named Double Negative Prostate Cancer (DNPC). To test if SEMA3C is a contributing factor in the progression of DNPC, we will compare SEMA3C level in tissues from patient and healthy individuals. Then, we will study if SEMA3C level changes in parallel to genetic variations, happening in tumors with cancer growth.

At the intersection of a global pandemic and social justice movement: Effects of the Covid-19 pandemic and the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement on the development of passion for a cause, mental health and well-being of Black young adults in Canada.

The historic events of the spring of 2020 - the collision of the worst public health crisis in a century and the largest Black civil rights movement in half a century - offer a unique opportunity to examine how the frustrations and hopes of Black young adults were affected. We sought to understand the potentially competing impacts that the public health and social justice crises have had on the young adults in their communities.

AI-based Platform for Population-level Social Isolation Detection and Prediction

Social isolation is a serious public health issue which has many negative effects on quality of life and well-being of individuals. This research project aims to develop and test a Minimally Viable technology platform (MVP) to tackle population-level social isolation. This platform is designed to collect and analyze surveys from the users and detect socially isolated people and identify individuals at risk of isolation in a community using AI and social network analysis techniques.

Vital Sign Monitoring for Overdose Detection and Emergency Notification

This research looks to develop a wearable device that is capable of monitoring users’ vital signs to detect an opioid overdose and send an emergency notification to emergency services for intervention. The vital sign monitoring will be carried out by a pulse oximeter, and will focus on the blood oxygen saturation, heart rate, respiratory rate, and heart rate variation of users to determine when an overdose has occurred.

Digital interventions to improve social connectedness and mental wellbeing of vulnerable older adults during COVID-19 and beyond

This project aims to 1) identify and understand the unique social and psychological burdens that vulnerable older adults face during the pandemic, 2) explore and identify successful and unsuccessful digital interventions that has been done at the West End Seniors Network (WESN) to help raise social connectedness, and 3) develop strategies and design future interventions to improve the mental wellbeing of the diverse senior population in Vancouver. The intern will conduct semi-structured interviews and focus groups with seniors in the community in order to accomplish the project goals.

Technology Innovations to Improve Patient Outcomes After Spinal Cord Injury

Spinal cord injury (SCI) results in severe paralysis, for which there are no effective treatments. Advanced technologies, however, can play an important role in assisting in the diagnosis, monitoring, and treatment of SCI patients who suffer many impairments beyond the loss of voluntary muscle control. In this proposal, we will develop and apply innovative technologies for SCI. We will develop a novel biosensor for the injured cord to inform doctors how to best support its healing in the early stages of injury.

Real-time food analysis using deep learning for Diabetes Self -Monitoring

Our proposed research is to create an algorithm capable of pre-evaluating diabetes patients’ meals before they consume them with the snap of a picture. We are attempting to accomplish this goal by employing AI, machine learning as well as computer vision for real-time analysis. Our goal is to analyse a users meal to return an accurate carb count and offer portion size adjustments to reduce their blood sugar fluctuations.

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