Kudos for April 2014



Kumanan Wilson, a pandemic planning expert and scientist at the OHRI and a Canada Research Chair in Public Health Policy developed a free smartphone app called ImmunizeCA that puts vaccination and public health information at the fingertips of Canadians. It not only will improve vaccine record-keeping but could also reduce vaccine preventable outbreaks.

Mark Tyndall, Head of Infectious Diseases at TOH is a high-profile supporter of a local supervised injection site and sympathizes with the dilemma officials at the city-run public health agency face. Ottawa’s medical officer of health, Dr. Isra Levy, is in a difficult position because he answers to the mayor, who along with the police chief opposes opening a safe injection site in Ottawa

For the past decade, Dr. Robert Roberts has run the University of Ottawa Heart Institute. His second and final term as president ends this month, and Sunday marked his last annual telethon fundraiser for the institute’s foundation. Roberts, 73, talked to the Citizen about the last 10 years and why he’s not ready to retire.

Jeff Turnbull spoke at the Canadian Health Coalition’s luncheon event in Ottawa to mark the end of the national health accord and call for new federal leadership on medicare. Patients are going without medicine that could potentially cure them because they can’t afford it. He called for a sweeping national plan to move the focus from treating illness in hospitals to promoting health – especially for the poorest and most vulnerable – and getting patients safe, high-quality care when and where they need it.


Phil Wells: Congrats on a definitive review of VTE treatment published in JAMA this month… http://jama.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=1829996

Mitch Sabloff: Congrats on the 60K Joan Sealy Trust fund grant for “The marrow microenvironment and radiation based transplantation in AML”.

Esteban Gandara: Congrats on a TOHAMO grant to pilot an outpatient anticoagulation and source of embolus investigation program for patients with peripheral arterial embolism admitted to vascular surgery. One of many collaborations EG has established with our vascular surgeons.

Andrew Aw: Congrats to Andrew for his successful U of O postgraduate fellowship award for a clinical and research fellowship in Lymphoma and Health Economics here at U of O and in Oxford.

Natasha Kekre: Congrats to Natasha for renewal of her U of O postgraduate fellowship award for a clinical and research fellowship in BMT and Cord Blood transplants at Dana Farber (including an MPH at Harvard).

Lothar Huebsch: Received the Andre Peloquin Award – it was heartening to hear a senior physician at UOHI tell LBH how much he enjoyed being a junior resident while LBH was a senior resident on his CTU service a few years ago.

Christopher N. Bredeson, MD, MSc, has been chosen by ballot among American Society for Blood and Marrow Transplantation (ASBMT) members to be the Society’s Vice President. The election places him in line to assume the presidency in two years. Dr. Bredeson is Professor of Medicine in the Division of Hematology, University of Ottawa, and Head of Malignant Hematology and BMT at The Ottawa Hospital.

Drs. Jonathan Angel and Nongnuj Tanphaichitr have been awarded a $620,000 grant from the CIHR that will have them continue their research to develop a unique vaginal contraceptive that has the potential to also prevent sexually transmitted infection in women, including HIV.

John Bell, senior scientist at OHRI and a professor with UOttawa faculty of medicine, has been awarded The Cancer Society Impact Grant, which will be used for research to tailor cancer-fighting viruses for pancreatic cancer. The funding amount is $1,244,770.

Rashmi Kothary has been awarded $253,800 over three years from the Muscular Dystrophy Association to further his research into spinal muscular atrophy, a disease affecting neurons and skeletal muscle that impacts very young children, leading to paralysis for which there is currently no effective treatment.

Alexander Sorisky has been awarded a $276,215 grant by the HSFC for another three (2014-June 2017).

Mark Tyndall has been awarded $100,000 by the CIHR to examine the risk of acquiring HIV among drug users in Ottawa. The study will involve 1,200 people who have smoked or injected drugs (other than marijuana) in the past year. The findings will provide a better understanding of the HIV risk environment among drug users and could lead to the development of community-based models that enhance HIV testing and treatment.

David Picketts has been granted more than $835,000 from the CIHR to further his research into developmental disorders and intellectual disabilities. Dr. Picketts and his team are studying how the ATRX gene organizes chromosomes and keeps cells functioning properly. The research could lead to treatments for complex intellectual disabilities.

Gregoire Le Gal: Heart and Stroke Grant for development of a clinical decision rule for recurrent venous thromboembolism (235K) and his senior author publication in JAMA validating the use of age adjusted D-Dimer to rule out PE in more patients with suspected PE .

Richard van der Jagt: Recent publication entitled “Open-label, randomized, noninferiority study of bendamustine-rituximab or R-CHOP/RCVP in first-line treatment of advanced indolent NHL or MCL: the BRIGHT study” pre-published online in Blood.

Christopher Norman Bredeson: Elected to Vice- President and incoming President of ASBMT


Mark Clemons and Christina Addison have just published a study funded by The Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation, examining the effectiveness of using drugs called bisphosphonates, which reduce pain and skeletal complications in patients whose breast cancer has spread to the bone.

Manish Sood has concluded a large scale study into the different types of dialysis used to treat end stage kidney disease in different regions of Canada. The study found significant variations between in hospital hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis that is typically administered at home. Peritoneal dialysis allows for better quality of life and offers significant cost savings.

Drs. Dariush Dowlatshahi and Santanu Chakraborty led a new study that describes a way to use time-resolved CT angiography for assessing patients who suffer from bleeding in the brain, or hemorrhagic stroke. The PloS One study showed that this 3-dimensional CT angiography improves the detection of blood leakage in the brain, providing a better understanding of where and how blood pools within the brain.

In a recently posted video, Dr. Michael Rudnicki, shares insights into his work and collaborations with Muscular Dystrophy Canada.

Drs. Chris Kennedy and Dylan Burger published a paper in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology that identifies a novel urinary biomarker for diabetic kidney disease. The test could potentially identify patients who are at risk of developing more advanced kidney damage.

Michael Rudnicki’s group has published a paper in The Journal of Cell Biology that describes a novel approach to dramatically enhance the efficiency of stem cell therapy for skeletal muscle diseases, such as Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

The Canadian Society of Nephrology has launched a new journal called “The Canadian Journal of Kidney Health and Disease,” the first and only journal of kidney disease in Canada. Dr. Manish Sood is the journal’s founder and Deputy Editor-In-Chief. The journal is open access, meaning that it is free to read for patients and their families.


Catherine Dubé, staff physician at TOH and Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Ottawa, has been appointed as Clinical Lead for the provincial ColonCancerCheck Program.

Curtis Cooper has been awarded the Dr. John M. Embil Mentorship Award from the Canadian Foundation for Infectious Diseases. The award recognizes clinical specialists in infectious diseases who have served as role models and mentors to junior clinicians, faculty, fellows and students involved in the field.

The 6th Floor of the Critical Care Wing was officially named the “Sinclair Centre for Regenerative Medicine“; it houses the laboratories of Drs. Duncan Stewart, David Courtman, Catherine Tsilfidis and Bernard Thebaud, as well as a GMP cell manufacturing facility.