27 July 2016

2016 Discovery Award Recipients

Congratulations to the Banting Research Foundation 2016 Discovery Award recipients. Six grants were funded in the 2016 competition out of 50 applications. The successful Discovery Award recipients are:

26 July 2016

Christopher Dennison, PhD

Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Alberta

Impact severity metric for focal head and diffuse brain injury

(Photo: Richard Siemens)

(Photo: Richard Siemens)

Whether or not today’s helmets protect the wearer from mild diffuse brain injuries, sometimes referred to as concussions, is the topic of intense debate. One of the primary venues for this debate is in the helmet standards and certification community. READ THE WHOLE STORY »

26 July 2016

Jeffrey Gagnon, PhD

Department of Biology, Laurentian University

Investigating the role of H2S in the regulation of ghrelin secretion

Jeffrey Gagnon with student in lab

Jeffrey Gagnon with student in lab


Ghrelin, a hormone produced in the endocrine cells of the stomach, regulates several aspects of metabolic health, including appetite and energy storage. Recently, meals high in the amino acid cysteine have been shown to reduce ghrelin secretion. Foods rich in this amino acid also lead to increased production of the bioactive gas molecule hydrogen sulfide (H2S). H2S has been shown to regulate many aspects of health, including inflammation, cardiovascular health, and endocrine control. Dr Gagnon believes that ghrelin cells can metabolize cysteine to produce their own H2S, and that this H2S reduces ghrelin secretion and reduces appetite. He will first demonstrate how H2S and its precursor amino acid L-cysteine can regulate ghrelin secretion using several ghrelin producing cell models. He will then examine how this amino acid, and its gas metabolite, can suppress food intake through the suppression of ghrelin. This work will provide important information on how ghrelin and appetite is regulated by H2S and may lead to new strategies in weight management.

26 July 2016

Kaitlyn McLachlan, PhD

Department of Psychology, University of Guelph

Evaluating novel neurobiomarkers in the identification of adults with FASD using portable eye tracking and EEG technology

Individuals with fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) are overrepresented in the criminal justice system. There is an urgent need to identify neurobiomarkers of FASD and individuals at risk in order to reduce recidivism and the resulting high social, health, and economic costs. Novel use of neurotechnologies, including portable eye movement control tracking and EEG, may offer a window into the brain and aid in the identification of patterns of deficits in offenders with FASD. READ THE WHOLE STORY »

26 July 2016

Noam Miller, PhD

Department of Psychology, Wilfrid Laurier University

Exploring neural mechanisms of social behavior using zebrafish (Danio rerio)

(l to r) Ramy Ayoub, Mackenzie Schultz, Noam Miller, Chelsey Damphousse

(l to r) Ramy Ayoub, Mackenzie Schultz, Noam Miller, Chelsey Damphousse

This research study uses zebrafish, a small freshwater species of fish commonly used in genetic and developmental research, to explore the mechanisms of social behavior. Zebrafish spend the majority of their time in groups and have complex social interactions, including learning from each other, making collective decisions about where to search for food, and communicating about the presence of predators. READ THE WHOLE STORY »

26 July 2016

Roxane Paulin, PhD

Department of Medicine, Université Laval

Targeting ErbB2 by TAK-165 reverses pulmonary hypertension in vitro and in vivo

Roxane Paulin and her Groupe de Recherche en Hypertension Pulmonaire, Université Laval

Roxane Paulin and her Groupe de Recherche en Hypertension Pulmonaire, Université Laval

In pulmonary hypertension (high blood pressure in the lungs), cells forming the walls of arteries in the lungs proliferate like cancer cells, narrowing the arteries and making it difficult for blood to pass through. There is also evidence of inflammation, similar to that in infections, and evidence of insulin resistance, as in diabetes. READ THE WHOLE STORY »

Banting Research Foundation
Founded in 1925 by supporters of Frederick Banting,
1923 Nobel laureate for the discovery of insulin


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