Kudos for May 2012



Shawn Aaron, Rebecca Auer, Mark Clemons, Duncan Stewart and Philip Wells were interviewed by CFRA radio about cutting-edge clinical trials that could improve treatment for asthma, COPD, cancer, blood-clotting, heart attack and other conditions. Dr. Jack Kitts also spoke about the importance of clinical research to TOH and the community. The radiothon raised more than $60,000.

Dar Dowlatshahi and Antonio Giulivi were interviewed by the Medical Post about how best to prevent blood clots that can lead to strokes in people who are at high risk due to an irregular heartbeat. Warfarin has been used for more than 50 years but now there are new drugs available that are more convenient for patients but they have some rare side effects. Dr. Dowlatshahi and colleagues are creating a registry to study the side effects of these drugs and determine how best to use them.

Smita Pakhale is hoping to develop and test a unique new tobacco cessation program that could save millions of lives in India. The project is explained in a video on the Grand Challenges Canada – Rising Stars in Global Health website. Scientists can go on the website and vote for Dr. Pakhale’s proposal and help her obtain funding.

Gonzalo Alvarez has a youtube video on his TAIMA TB study. Link is:


Tom Foreman, medical ethicist at TOH, interviewed about ethics in the emergency department by CBC. Dr. Foreman quoted as saying “doctors and nurses are trained to rescue and save lives in the rushed, immediate atmosphere of an emergency room and often do not have time to step back and think about the consequences of their actions.”

Media coverage continued for Mark Tyndall in regards to a safe injection site for Ottawa. He appeared in The Ottawa Citizen, Globe & Mail, CFRA radio, CBC, National Post, MetroCanada, Ottawa Sun and CTV.

Rashmi Kothary was featured as a success story in the May newsletter of the Council of Academic Hospitals of Ontario. His research deals with the drug Fasudil which can extend the average lifespan of mice with spinal muscular atrophy from 30.5 days to more than 300 days.


Marc Rodger and colleagues have shown that excessive weight gain during pregnancy can be just as problematic as being overweight or obese before pregnancy. Details in Journal of Maternal-Fetal and Neonatal Medicine. The Ottawa Citizen also picked up this story.

Hsiao-Huei Chen has uncovered a possible link between a gene called LMO4 and the kind of memory loss that occurs in Alzheimer’s Disease. This research could lead to development of new therapies for Alzheimer’s. Details in Journal of Neuroscience.


Michele Turek awarded a Physician Clinician Recognition Award. Recipients are chosen for their excellent clinical skills, their commitment to providing compassionate care to patients, and their dedication to educating the next generation of physicians.

Successful candidates for the Distinguished Teacher Program 2012 are:

  • Beth Pringle
  • Karima Khamisa
  • Ann Bugeja
  • Christopher Skinner
  • Nav Saloojee

Compass awards for individual peer-recognition announced:

  • Leah Shaw, Assistant to Mitch Sabloff, was a Department of Medicine recipient

Shawn Aaron received a Clinic Incentive Award of $41,269 from Cystic Fibrosis Canada for the period April 1,2012-March 31, 2013.

Christina Addison and Mark Clemons have been awarded a grant from Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation to examine novel therapy for bone metastases which involves an inexpensive antibiotic combined with a currently used bone-targeting agent.

Robin Parks received grant from Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada for his work on virus biology and gene therapy.

Antonio Colavita received grant from Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada for his work on the development of the nervous system.

Dar Dowlatshahi and team published a paper in AHA Journal – Stroke entitled ‘Poor prognosis in Warfarin-Associated Intracranial Hemorrhage Despite Anticoagulation Reversal’.

Kevin Burns as published research in Kidney International which could contribute to the development of novel approaches to prevent and treat kidney disease that is associated with diabetes.

Angela Crawley, recipient of an Ontario HIV Treatment Network Junior Investigator Development Award, discussed her research with Jonathan Angel in Ontario HIV Treatment Network’s newsletter. Her research concerns the interaction between the immune system and HIV and focuses on Interleukin 7 signalling pathway.


Debra Pugh organized the first procedures OSCE which was held on April 18th, 2012. There were 5 stations, administered in 5 simultaneous tracks with 50 residents and 26 faculty participating. It involved live standardized patients and nurses as well as mannequins. Residents were expected to make a decision about the need to perform a procedure including the indications and contra-indications; obtain consent from the standardized patient; collaborate with the nurse and perform the procedure on the mannequin. The residents had to deal with complications that were built into the cases and also had to interpret findings. This was the first OSCE of its kind for internal medicine residents. Kudos to Debra for such great work.

José Pereira selected as this year’s OMA Section of Palliative Medicine Award of Excellence recipient. Award was presented at the Hospice Palliative Care Ontario (HPCO) conference at the Sheraton Parkway in Richmond Hill.

Gregory Rose conducted a brief demo to show how the eHealth portlets (OLIS) data is used in his clinic at the TOH/eHealth Media Event on February 8th at the Civic campus. This successful pilot and expansion of access to eHealth portlets plus the consolidation of Hawkesbury and TOH electronic health records in Oacis were being celebrated at the Media event.

John Bell received the Canadian Cancer Society’s prestigious Robert L. Noble Prize ($22,000) for outstanding achievements in cancer research. Dr. Bell has led a number of initiatives aimed at developing oncolytic virus-based cancer therapies.