Kudos for February 2012


Erin Keely has accepted the position of Vice-Chair Medical Education in the Department of Medicine, effective March 1st, 2012.

Marc Rodger has published new research about the role of blood clotting in pregnancy. He and colleagues found that 2/3 of new mothers had evidence of blood clots in their pelvic veins a few days after delivery. Results of this small study published in American Journal of Obstetrics. 10% of all maternal deaths in Canada and US are due to pregnancy-related blood clotting so more research is needed. Dr. Rodger is currently leading a multi-national clinical trial looking at anti-clotting drugs in high risk pregnant women after delivery.


Duncan Stewart and Michael Rudnicki interviewed by media after the Government of Canada announced new funding for personalized medicine.

Bill Dalziel interviewed by media in regards to the stigma of dementia.

Kumanan Wilson interviewed by media regarding a report that flu shots should be mandatory for health care workers. He was also interviewed by Maclean’s magazine about declining vaccination rates in Canada and a link to an outbreak of measles in Quebec. The article discussed his research which shows that serious side effects from vaccines are extremely rare.

Jim Walker interviewed on CTV morning show about prevention, early recognition and treatment of malignant melanoma in Ottawa and Eastern Ontario.

Jennifer Beeker interviewed and had a 1-page article in The Ottawa Citizen on Tuesday January 17th re her Pigmented Lesion Clinic designed to screen for melanoma in high risk patients.

Michael Rudnicki interviewed for Global TV special on ‚Äėstem cell tourism‚Äô. Dr. Rudnicki cautioned patients from going overseas for unproven stem cell procedures. A patient who had undergone a novel bone marrow stem cell transplant procedure for MS (trial led by Harry Atkins & Mark Freedman) was also interviewed for this same piece. Stem Cell Network has developed a website: www.closerlookatstemcells.org.

Mark Clemons was interviewed by The Ottawa Citizen about the growing use of personalized medicine in the treatment of cancer, including the use of molecular tests to predict which patients are most likely to benefit from particular therapies.

Carl van Walraven interviewed by CBC TV Ottawa about a new ePrognosis tool developed by Californian researchers to predict how long an older patient will live. Dr. van Walraven has developed similar tools:

  1. to predict the likelihood of urgent readmission or death after 30 days
  2. to predict how long a patient with end-stage kidney disease will live with and without a transplant

Dr. van Walraven feels that these types of tools can help doctors and patients make difficult treatment choices.

The Province of Ontario’s decision to cut $66 million in health research led to several interviews about detrimental effects to health care and research in Ontario. Dr. John Bell and Dr. Duncan Stewart were both interviewed on this topic.


Dennis Bulman and his group, in collaboration with CHEO researchers, have identified the genes behind four different rare human diseases. The latest discovery, Floating-Harbor Syndrome, was published in the American Journal of Human Genetics and shows that this syndrome is caused by mutations in a gene known as SRCAP which is involved in packaging DNA into active versus inactive forms. Previous research focused on Weaver Syndrome, Joubert Syndrome and Split-hand/foot malformation with long-bone deficiency.

Rachel Goodwin has published a paper on new targeted therapies for cancer. The paper was published in the European Journal of Cancer and describes the work of the Methodology for the Development of Innovative Cancer Therapies (MDICT) Task Force. The task force includes 16 academic centres from 9 countries, as well as 9 pharmaceutical and regulatory observers. Together they came up with criteria for moving new targeted agents through various stages of drug development and established a number of areas for future research.


CIHR 2012 Grant Announcements

COOPER, Curtis L -¬†Canadian Association for HIV Research (CAHR) 2012 Conference- “A Turning Point in HIV/AIDS: Meeting New Challenges”

CAMERON, D. – HIV Prevention Through International Knowledge Exchange

ANGEL, Jonathan B – Regulation and Function of Soluble IL-7 Receptor Alpha (CD127) in HIV Infection

MACPHERSON, Paul – The HIV Tat Protein Removes the Interleukin-7 Receptor from the Surface of CD8 T-Cells

HALL, Pippa G - The role of the arts and humanities in the education of health professionals: What is the impact?

GRIMSHAW, Jeremy – Developing an International Research Agenda for the Theoretical Domains Framework

BALFOUR, Louise C - The Canadian HIV quit smoking trial: Tackling the co-morbidities of depression and cardiovascular disease in HIV+ smokers

BRAND, Marjorie C - Hematopoietic transcription factors and their role in leukemogenesis

BURGON, Patrick - Cardiac Manifestation of Laminopathies; elucidation of the functional role of a novel muscle enriched lamin interacting protein (MLIP) in the heart.

LEENEN, Frans - Molecular Dissection of Brain Mechanisms Contributing to HF post MI.

LIDDY, Clare - Improved Delivery of Cardiovascular Care (IDOCC) through Outreach Facilitation

STEWART, Alexandre F - Translational derepression during ischemia

TINMOUTH, Alan T - Safety and Efficacy of a Therapeutic Platelet Transfusion Strategy in Outpatients

WILSON, Kumanan - Developing a framework for applying the precautionary principle for blood transfusion safety decisions.

ALVAREZ, Gonzalo G - TAIMA TB (STOP TB) in Nunavut Knowledge Translation Project

KENNEDY, Christopher - Validating Nox5 as a target for diabetic renal complications


George Wells and Anthony Tang won a national award for answering the question: does a next-generation pacemaker save the lives of people with moderate heart failure? They led a study across 3 continents that showed powerful evidence the little device does save lives in those with less severe heart failure. The two will receive a 2011 Top Achievements in Health Research Award from CIHR and the Canadian Medical Association Journal.

Jim Walker was the ‚Äúlast man standing‚ÄĚ at the Dept of Medicine‚Äôs January party. He closed down the successful event.

Kudos to the Tracy Serafini and the LM 12 Medicine Staff for a successful Winter Party.