Kudos for April 2013




Harry Atkins and Mark Freedman interviewed by CBC and the Ottawa Citizen for their ground-breaking clinical trial that uses bone marrow stem cell transplant in combination with chemotherapy to treat multiple sclerosis. Drs. Atkins and Freedman are currently finalizing their manuscript submission for this trial.

Virginia Roth interviewed by Ottawa Sun and Ottawa Citizen in regards to C. Diff outbreak at The Ottawa Hospital in response to a Public Health Ontario report. The report criticized practices and hygiene at both campuses of TOH.  Dr. Roth described special cleaning teams – “rapid response teams” -  that have been assembled to improve cleaning throughout the hospital.

David Grimes interviewed by newswire services in regards to Health Canada’s approval of NEUPRO® patch for treatment of Parkinson’s disease and restless legs syndrome.  Dr. Grimes was quoted as saying “The ability to ensure a steady 24-hour delivery of medication with NEUPRO® may help to reduce debilitating on and off symptoms which many patients experience with Parkinson’s treatments.”

John Bell’s research on the use of cancer-killing viruses was featured in an Ottawa Citizen series, called “Our Health” – ‘Ottawa home to promising new cancer treatment.’ Collaboration

Fraser Scott has published a paper in Diabetes which gives compelling evidence that diet is a major environmental promoter of autoimmune Type 1 diabetes. The paper also identifies a specific host-defence protein called CAMP that could serve as a way to identify important immune system anti-inflammatory agents, called M2 microphages. This knowledge could lead to a new way of treating or preventing diabetes by targeting immune cells in the gut. Details can be found in Diabetes.

Alexander Sorisky and his research team have furthered understanding of the complex ways the immune system is involved in the accumulation of fat tissue. Dr. Sorisky found that interleukin-1 beta, a factor made by immune cells called macrophages, blocks the formation of mature fat cells. Details can be found in the Journal of Endocrinology.


Dar Dowlatshahi is co-PI on a CIHR funded operating grant that will compare the health-care cost and medical benefits of oral blood thinners taken by seniors. This study will use data for patients who have experienced bleeding while on blood thinners and compare the older drug, warfarin, to the newer blood thinners. Details on CIHR website.

Gonzalo Alvarez received CIHR grant – Modeling the impact of interventions for tuberculosis control in Inuit communities. Grant is in collaboration with investigators from McGill University Health Centre Research Institute. $100,000 for 2012-2013. This grant will continue his work on TB in Canada’s northern communities and build on his TAIMA TB grant.

Shawn Aaron awarded a clinic incentive grant from Cystic Fibrosis Canada for 2013-2014 in the amount of $42, 134.


Al Forster had an article which found that physicians are ordering unnecessary MRIs for lower back pain, resulting in longer wait times for others who are in need, published in JAMA Internal Medicine (published online March 25th, 2013). “Overuse of Magnetic Resonance Imaging.”  Dr. Forster collaborated with researchers from University of Alberta, University of Calgary and  University of Toronto on this study.  Media coverage included Globe and Mail, Vancouver Sun, Global News, CTV news, Huffington Post. 


Keith Wilson is the winner of the 2013 Award for Research Excellence from the Canadian Association of Psychosocial Oncology (CAPO). Dr. Wilson’s research has focused on the psychosocial and spiritual needs of cancer patients facing the end of life. He will receive the award at the 2013 CAPO Conference in Ottawa, April 24-26th.

Xuan Pham, Division of Nuclear Medicine, received a prestigious appointment to the 2013 Royal College Examination Board in Nuclear Medicine. Dr. Wanzhen Zeng stepping down after several years of dedicated service to the Board.

Marc Carrier presented with the Faculty of Medicine Distinguished Young Professor Award at Faculty ceremony on February 28th.

Deb Pugh won the best oral presentation award at AIME, held on Friday April 5th. Her presentation was entitled: A Procedural Skills OSCE for Internal Medicine Residents to Assess Multiple Competencies.

Mylene Cote won the AIME young investigator award. Her presentation was entitled: Assessing the Validity of a Multidisciplinary Mini-CEX: A Comparison to a Multidisciplinary OSCE.

Jim Dimitroulakos awarded 1 of 3 Joan Sealy Trust 2012-2103 uOttawa funding awards. His application was ‘Evaluating novel therapeutic approaches in ex-vivo tumour tissues.”

Jennifer Beecker nominated for a 2013 PAIRO Excellence in Clinical Teaching Award.

Loree Boyle awarded the 2013 PAIRO Excellence in Clinical Teaching Award for the University of Ottawa. This award was established in 1982 and is now a well-recognized way for residents to acknowledge clinical teachers who have excelled in their role.