It’s been called the emperor of all maladies – the one no one wants to hear about, especially when talking to their doctor: cancer. In part due to an aging population, the Canadian Cancer Society recently estimated that nearly half of all Canadians will be diagnosed with cancer at some point in their lifetimes. But it’s not all bad news. Through a…
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The immune system is the body’s best defense in fighting diseases like HIV and cancer.  Now, an international team of researchers is harnessing the immune system to provide new clues that may help efforts to produce an HIV vaccine. SFU professor Mark Brockman and co-authors from the University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa have identified a connection between infection control…
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Inside every cell of our body, microscopic molecules are working like tiny machines, coordinating all the complex tasks that keep us alive and healthy. When this machinery doesn’t work correctly it can set off a chain reaction that leads to serious illness. At the Centre for Molecular Medicine and Therapeutics (CMMT) at BC Children’s Hospital, Shawn Shortill studies the hidden…
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Registered researchers will have rapid access to an “unprecedented scale” of clinical research data through the new Common Infrastructure for National Cohorts in Europe, Canada and Africa (CINECA), launched today. Simon Fraser University professor Fiona Brinkman, the initiative’s Canadian lead, says the project will not only accelerate disease research but will also help to advance benefits to patients worldwide through the…
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Diarrheal infections remain a major problem, even in developed countries. To infect their host, human gut pathogens such as enteropathogenic E. coli (EPEC) and enterohemorrhagic E.coli (EHEC), rely on elaborate membrane-spanning systems to adhere to the epithelial lining of the gastrointestinal tract, and inject proteins into the host cells which lead to infection. To study bacterial pathogenesis and the role of the microbiota during…
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ICORD Researchers Investigate Cognitive Impairment in People with SCI

When people think of spinal cord injury (SCI) they tend to focus on paralysis and body movement. But post-injury, the biggest health risk is actually cardiovascular disease— it’s the number one cause of disability and death in people with SCI. Vancouver Coastal Health Research Institute scientists at ICORD are focusing on cardiovascular problems in SCI patients, in particular their inability…
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Imagine what a single nerve cell looks like under a microscope. Now imagine how it might look if the microscope could probe even deeper—right into the cells and straight to the molecules forming the dynamic structures that create all living cells. SFU researchers can now do just that thanks to a “super-resolution microscope” recently purchased with help from the NSERC…
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The Secret Lives of CBR Researchers: Lauren Wilkinson

The Centre for Blood Research has many talented graduate students, postdocs and faculty doing cutting edge research in important fields such as infectious and inflammatory diseases, cancer, and biotechnology. In the CBR Newsletter, we spend a great deal of time focusing on how CBR researchers apply their skills to achieve prestigious publications and awards, but we often do not recognize…
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Young ice-hockey players who have had concussions continue to exhibit some brain impairment after being cleared to play, according to a new study by researchers from Simon Fraser University, the Surrey Health and Technology District and the Mayo Clinic. SFU professor Ryan D’Arcy, founder of Surrey’s Health and Technology District, led a research and development team that has developed a…
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Working with researchers at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California, the team analyzed 28 childhood tumour samples from nine cancer types archived in the BC Children’s Hospital Biobank. They found that the pediatric cancer-focused test found more genetic mutations per sample compared with tests used to analyze adult cancers, and…
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