NSERC Announces Funding for Science Communications Skills

NSERC is launching a pilot funding opportunity to enhance the communications skills of students and researchers in the natural sciences and engineering. Such skills will contribute to science literacy, help counter science-related misinformation, and foster a role for science in evidence-based decision making. The new pilot program, Science Communication Skills grant (pilot), is targeted at organizations that provide science communication skills…
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Congratulations to MBIM HON student Laurel Neufeld, who is officially a Top 10 finalist for the Undergraduate 3 Minute Thesis Competition! Currently doing her MICB 449 project in the Finlay Lab, Laurel’s first draft of the 3 Minute Thesis, which qualified her for finals, is on “Modeling E.coli infections in the gut.” This new competition funded by the PURE award will present finalists on…
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Cell therapy with autologous donor‐specific regulatory T cells (Tregs) is a promising strategy to minimize immunosuppression in transplant recipients. Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) technology has recently been used successfully to generate donor‐specific Tregs and overcome the limitations of enrichment protocols based on repetitive stimulations with alloantigens. However, the ability of CAR‐Treg therapy to control alloreactivity in immunocompetent recipients is unknown.…
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Campylobacter is a major foodborne pathogen in many parts of the world and its ensuing illness, campylobacteriosis, is the most frequently reported bacterial foodborne illness in Canada, outnumbering the reported cases of Listeria, Salmonella, and Shiga-toxigenic Escherichia coli infections combined. Campylobacter can survive in many environments including soil, manure, aquatic sources. These bacteria are also present in many farm and wild animals, with the pathogen transmission…
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Dr. Elizabeth Simpson Awarded Fighting Blindness Research Grant

Using gene therapy to treat congenital blindness Aniridia is an eye disorder where the iris, the coloured part of the eye, is partially or completely absent. Individuals with aniridia usually have low vision from birth and develop glaucoma and cataracts, which can lead to blindness. Current treatments may slow the progression of aniridia, but there are currently no cures or…
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The Microbiology & Immunology First-Generation University Student Mentorship Fund was established to support the career and personal development goals of undergraduates and graduate students in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology who are first-generation university students.* Created to celebrate Dr. Mike Gold’s tenure as Department Head from 2009-2019, the fund is intended to enrich the UBC experience for students who are the…
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Are Noncommunicable Diseases Communicable?

The past century has seen a profound decrease in mortality rates across the world, accompanied by a marked shift from communicable diseases (caused by infectious microbes) to noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) such as cardiovascular diseases, cancer, and respiratory diseases. NCDs—defined as diseases that are not transmissible directly from one person to another—account for more than 70% (41 million) of all deaths…
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Students can now study for careers in the life sciences – including genetics, healthcare, conservation and ecology – in renovated and expanded Undergraduate Life Sciences Teaching Laboratories at the University of British Columbia. The $91-million project, officially opened today, increases capacity and provides life sciences students with opportunities to learn in well-equipped and spacious teaching laboratories, modern classrooms, and study…
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Over the past five years, the Travel Awards provided by the Centre for Blood Research (CBR) have been supporting the ongoing professional development of Postdoctoral Fellows (PDF) and Research Associates (RA). This year, CBR is delighted to expand this funding opportunity to graduate trainees. Up to $1,000 is awarded for PDFs and RAs, while up to $500 is awarded for…
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Extravillous cytotrophoblasts (EVTs) invade into the uterine wall and remodel spiral arteries for proper placentation. Studies from us and others have demonstrated that the transforming growth factor‐β superfamily member bone morphogenetic protein 2 (BMP2) plays important roles in endometrial decidualization and trophoblast cell invasion. However, BMP2 has also been shown to regulate endothelial cell migration and capillary‐like tube formation, as has…
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