Turmeric, the rhizome of Curcuma longa plant belonging to the ginger family Zingiberaceae, has a history in Ayurvedic and traditional Chinese medicine for treatment of chronic diseases, including metabolic and cardiovascular diseases (CVD). This parallels a prevalence of age- and lifestyle-related diseases, especially CVD and type 2 diabetes (T2D), and associated mortality which has occurred in recent decades. While the chemical composition…
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The Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health Innovation Fund Kickstart Research Grant is intended to help kick-start new research collaborations, directions, and technological developments. It supports new projects that generate preliminary data for future grant applications to external funding agencies. The following are DMCBH researchers who have received this year’s Grant. Congratulations to all the winners! Drs. Kamyar Keramatian(pictured top, middle), Erin…
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Every week, more Canadians are rolling up their sleeves to get the shot that will protect them against COVID-19.  One of the breakout vaccine technologies of this pandemic are the mRNA vaccines developed by Pfizer-BioNtech and Moderna. Those were some of the earliest vaccines out of the gate because of how easy they are to create. They also work incredibly…
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The BC Diabetes Research Network is delighted to release our fifth podcast from Season 2 of our official podcast: “Diabetes: From Beta Cells to Bicycles”. Podcast host Krista Lamb is joined by BC Diabetes Research Network researcher Dr Francis Lynn. Dr. Francis Lynn is an Associate Professor in the Department of Surgery and the School of Biomedical Engineering at the University of…
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Bold Therapeutics, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company, is announcing that the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has granted BOLD-100 an Orphan Drug Designation (ODD) in the treatment of gastric (stomach) cancer. BOLD-100 is a first-in-class ruthenium-based small molecule therapeutic that (1) alters the unfolded protein response (UPR) through selective GRP78 inhibition; and (2) induces reactive oxygen species (ROS) which causes…
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Virginia (Ginny) Pichler, a doctoral student in Microbiology and Immunology, is one of 16 graduate students and medical residents doing research in the field of health to receive this year’s Friedman Award for Scholars in Health. Winners range from a variety of programs, including Electrical and Computer Engineering, Experimental Medicine and Kinesiology. The Friedman Award for Scholars in Health supports…
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SARS-CoV-2 RNA Quantification Using Droplet Digital RT-PCR

Quantitative viral load assays have transformed our understanding of viral diseases. They hold similar potential to advance COVID-19 control and prevention, but SARS-CoV-2 viral load tests are not yet widely available. SARS-CoV-2 molecular diagnostic tests, which typically employ real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), yield semi-quantitative results only. Droplet digital RT-PCR (RT-ddPCR) offers an attractive platform for SARS-CoV-2 RNA quantification.…
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Tiny Tumours and Oscillating Oxygen

The words “cancer” and “hypoxia” frequently come up in the same conversation (in some cases, literally). Defined by the National Cancer Institute as a “condition in which there is a decrease in the oxygen supply to a tissue,” hypoxia can be exhibited by certain cells within a tumour due to problematic blood vessels. Cell culture that reflects the 3D nature of tumours can…
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Climate change represents potentially the biggest environmental threat to human kind since our existence. Still, our chemical industry relies mostly on the usage of fossil resources for the production of various products, such as plastics, chemicals, or fuels. In my work with microalgae, we describe an alternative process that sequesters CO2 from the atmosphere and allows a carbon-neutral production of all…
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Dr. Stuart Turvey, Dr. Henry Lu, and their colleagues at BC Children’s and UBC were surprised to find that two unrelated children from Alberta carried the same previously unknown genetic variant that leads to a dangerously weakened immune system. Experts call this profound combined immunodeficiency, or CID — a condition that can result from a wide variety of genetic and environmental causes.
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