Development of Applications of Simultaneous Positron Emission Tomography/Magnetic Resonance Imaging

Funded through a series of NSERC partnership grants, Cubresa Inc. have been working with the applicants to develop technologies for pre-clinical imaging for positron emission tomography (PET) imaging and PET friendly radiofrequency (RF) coils for magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of small animals.

Using wearable sensor-based technologies to detect changes in health status for prevention of adverse health events and to improve overall quality of life

The project goal is to determine the clinical utility of Orpyx LogR technology to detect gait changes and their efficacy to predict and monitor fall risk. Project I will use existing data to determine sensitivity and specificity for prospective classification of fallers and non-fallers for a composite measure drawn from an extensive battery including single and/or dual-task IMU-derived gait metrics as well as from force plate gait initiation data.

Assessing the effectiveness of plain packaging in reducing smoking rates: A mixed method approach - Year two

Tobacco is the number one cause of lung disease and death in Canada, and Nova Scotia in particular. For this reason, tobacco control is the number one priority for the Lung Association of Nova Scotia. To maximize the impact of its initiatives, the Lung Association of Nova Scotia is interested in collaborating with the post-doctoral fellow through the Elevate fellowship.
The engagement of the Lung Association of Nova Scotia with the proposed plain packaging project means that they are supporting local and innovative research.

Validation of novel neurofeedback training engine for improving brain health in aging and neurodevelopmental disorders - Year two

Memory impairment is the most common complaint associated with aging. Promising interventions based on research are generally reserved for clinical settings. Technological advancement has now made it possible to administer neurofeedback, an established technique for self-regulating brain waves, using portable technology. xSensa Labs, the partner organization, has developed a digital solution that translates research protocols for neurofeedback into portable technology for improving cognition.

Development of New Chromophores for Soil Detection on Surgical Instruments

Small surgical instruments can be used multiple times if cleaned properly after each surgery. At the end of the cleaning process, a visual inspection of each instrument is performed in order to detect any traces of soil such as blood, tissue or any other biological materials. However, the human eye is not a flawless sensor and soils that are not visible to the naked can be present.

Exploration of machine/deep learning techniques using Raman spectroscopy for the identification and classification of brain tumors and prostate cancer

Cancer cells are nearly impossible to distinguish from normal tissue without sophisticated detection methods and conventional methods fail to provide real-time information during the surgical procedure. ODS Medical is developing an exclusive Raman spectroscopy system that collects data through an optical probe and is interfaced with sophisticated machine learning algorithm to identify tissues abnormalities in real-time. This technology has proven to be effective for brain tumor and prostate cancer detection. As a result much larger datasets have been acquired both for brain and prostate.

Understanding mental health experiences of adults 50 years and older living in the Similkameen: A qualitative study using photovoice

The purpose of this study is to understand and promote awareness of the mental health experiences of adults 50 years of age and older who live in a rural community. This study uses photovoice, a research and advocacy method that helps people to tell their stories with photos. Participants will determine what types of experiences (e.g., stigma, resilience) will be explored by taking photos. After attending a photovoice workshop, participants will take their photos.

Evaluation measurements for an E-Learning Occupational Mental Health Program

This project will recruit an intern to develop appropriate methodologies in order to assess the effectiveness of an occupational mental health promotion program that uses a blended format of in-person sessions and online learning. The intern will work closely with the industry partner to review, develop, and pilot assessment tools, oversee the data collection, analyze data collected, and generate reports and publications for dissemination.

The development of a novel oncolytic virotherapy for acute myeloid leukemia

Modern molecularly targeted therapies have shown promise in treating some blood cancers, but a cure remains elusive for most acute blood cancer patients. This is largely due to the survival of some blood cancer cells that possess unique properties and can cause treatment failure or relapse, highlighting the need for new therapies. In collaboration with Virogin Biotech Ltd, we aim to develop an innovative oncolytic virotherapy to effectively target acute myeloid leukemia (AML) patient cells that are resistant to current therapies.

Implementation and advancement of image analysis for multiplexed microarrays

Microarray testing allows high-volume analysis. This work will compare open-source software to in-house analysis methods within SQI Diagnostics. The goal is to enhance the performance of current assay designs and to inform and guide the next-generation of assay designs (ie 384 well plates) which will support SQI’s technology leadership position. After implementing a print run and analysis using the current quality control protocols, data will be compared with existing SQI results.