Dr. Liam Brunham was recently announced as a recipient of the Canada’s Top 40 under 40 Award for 2017. Dr. Brunham is a Principal Investigator at the Centre for Heart Lung Innovation, an Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine at UBC, and an attending physician in the Healthy Heart Program at St. Paul’s Hospital. Founded in 1995 by Caldwell…
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Mutations in amyloid β precursor protein (APP) gene alter APP processing, either causing familial Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) or protecting against dementia. Under normal conditions beta-site APP cleaving enzyme 1 (BACE1) cleaves APP at minor Asp1 site to generate C99 for amyloid β protein (Aβ) production, and predominantly at major Glu11 site to generate C89, resulting in truncated Aβ production. We discovered that…
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The number of scientists who report conducting purely fundamental research in Canada dropped from 24% to 1.6% between 2006 and 2015, according to a survey released on 28 June. The analysis reveals researchers’ frustration with the country’s long-term shift towards the support of applied research over basic science. The survey was conducted by the Global Young Academy — an international…
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Dr. Janice Leung Wins MSFHR Health Professional-Investigator Award

“This is an emerging public health issue – people with HIV are living longer and surviving thanks to effective treatments. But now we have to consider what the long-term effects of surviving with HIV are and the fact of the matter is that many are suffering from chronic lung diseases.” This quote from Dr. Janice Leung, a respirologist at St. Paul’s…
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A Heme-Dependent Enzyme Forms the Nitrogen-Nitrogen Bond in Piperazate

Molecules containing a nitrogen-nitrogen (N-N) linkage have a variety of structures and biological activities; however, no enzyme has yet been demonstrated to catalyze N-N bond formation in an organic molecule. Here we report that the heme-dependent enzyme KtzT from Kutzneria sp. 744 catalyzes N-N bond formation in the biosynthesis of piperazate, a building block for nonribosomal peptides.
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An experimental treatment for bladder cancer will move into an early phase clinical trial under an agreement signed today between Cancer Research UK and Cancer Research Technology (CRT), the charity’s commercial arm, and Canadian biotechnology company Sitka Biopharma Inc., a spin-off of The Centre for Drug Research and Development (CDRD) and the University of British Columbia (UBC), financed by Quark…
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The Western red cedar occupies a special place in British Columbia’s history, culture and economy. Growing to 60 metres, its majesty, versatility and durability have made it a cornerstone of Northwest Coast Aboriginal traditions and a major cash crop for B.C. Not surprisingly, it is the province’s official tree. The wood is also toxic to some of the people who…
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PD-L1 and Intratumoral Immune Response in Breast Cancer

PD-L1 is thought to play an important role in the antitumor immune response. In this study, we investigated the expression of PD-L1 within breast tumor subsets to better define its prognostic significance. METHODS: Immunohistochemistry was performed to determine PD-L1 tumor cell expression and to enumerate CD8, CD4 and CD68 tumor-infiltrating leucocytes (TIL) in a cohort of 443 breast cancers categorized…
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The Geoffrey L. Hammond Lectureship recognizes investigators at BC Children’s Hospital who have made a significant impact on improving the health and well-being of children and families, served as a role model and mentor to junior researchers, trainees and students over the last 10 years, and provided leadership to the community on the Oak Street Campus. The BC Children’s Hospital Research Institute…
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New Pilot Trials Spark Community Interest

It’s no secret that many people living with HIV (PLWH) both use and claim therapeutic effects from cannabis and cannabis-containing products. While the anti-inflammatory and anti-fibrotic effects are well known, few randomized controlled studies have been done using cannabis products. CTN’s newest pilot trial will examine the feasibility, safety and tolerability of cannabis for PLWH. As a secondary objective, the…
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