McMaster researchers discover how cells recognize viral toxin
Don Low's Keystone Talk
Mark Loeb Hutterite Influenza Studies
The following articles were recently published discussing the Hutterite Influenza studies conducted by Mark Loeb.
Vaccinate kids to reduce flu in adults, study says
Kids should get flu shots first: Study
Flu Shots in Children Can Help Community
Annual General Meeting
On January 14 and 15, the IIDR helds it's Annual General Meeting at the Queen's Landing at Niagara-on-the-lake. The retreat began with dinner followed by the the AGM which discussed a summary of 2009, objectives for 2010, group discussions on research direction and an open discussion. Friday's agenda featured morning presentations by IIDR members, Justin Nodwell, Dawn Bowdish, Fred Capretta, Fiona Smaill, Mark Loeb, Karen Mossman and Brian Lichty and the afternoon played host to a post-doctoral symposium with presentations by Mariya Morar (Wright Lab), Stephanie De Witte-Orr (Mossman Lab), Leslie Cuthbertson (Nodwell Lab) and Edie Scheurwater (Burrows Lab).
IIDR Helps City Kidz
On December 4, the IIDR held its first Holiday Party in the CIBC Hall. The event featured live music by Null Hypothesis and was well attended by more than 140 people. Proceeds from the event totalled over $400 and were donated to the City Kidz
Gift of Christmas toy drive. City Kidz is a
nonprofit charitable organization that helps inner-city children and their families by offering free programs in the former Playhouse Theatre on Sherman Avenue North in Hamilton.
eBioscience Award Winner
Ana Tomljenovic, a PhD student in the Coombes lab, won the eBioscience Award for Excellence in Graduate Poster
presentation at the Infection and Immunity Research Forum at the
University of Western Ontario. The Infection andImmunity Research Forum is
an initiative organized by the graduate students of the Department of
Microbiology and Immunology at the University of Western Ontario and brings
together graduate students and post-doctoral fellows with world-renowned
investigators in the field of infection and immunity. Ana's award was for
her work on regulatory evolution in Salmonella, entitled, "Regulatory network expansion in
Salmonella Typhimurium and its implications for intracellular virulence and
pathoadaptation" with co-author David Mulder, also from the Coombes
IIDR Opening Symposium Showcases The Best and Brightest
On Saturday, October 24, the Michael G. DeGroote Institute for Infectious Disease Research (IIDR) held its Grand Opening Symposium at McMaster University in the Health Sciences Centre. The event was attended by more than 150 researchers, students and industry professional and featured presentations by world-renowned infectious disease researchers Grant McFadden, Julian Davies, Ferric Fang, Patrice Courvalin and IIDR members Jonathan Dushoff, Dawn Bowdish, Nathan Magarvey, Brian Coombes and Marie Elliot. The day begin with an official welcome by IIDR scientific director Gerry Wright and Associate Dean of Research Stephen Collins and ended with student poster presentations and an official tour of the IIDR facilities on the second floor of the MDCL building.
Congratulations to the winners of the poster presentations.
The award for the best graduate student poster went to Ramandeep Toor, Christopher Stone and Jodi Turner from the Mahony Lab
for their poster entitled "Interactions of the Type 3 Secretion System structural effector proteins in C. pneumoniae".
The award for the best undergraduate student poster went to The Bowdish Lab for their poster "Your mama's so phat that even a macrophage couldn't engulf her".
Ontario Graduate Fellowship Award
Kirandeep Bhullar, a member of the Wright Lab, was recently awarded a 2009/2010 McMaster Internal Prestige Ontario Graduate Fellowship. The award, which totals $12,000, was established to fund exceptional graduate scholars at McMaster University. The fellowships require an A- average and the recipient must be enrolled in a masters or doctoral program. Kirandeep was nominated by the Department of Biochemistry andBiomedical Sciences, which is allocated three nominees each year.
Evidence-Based Infectious Diseases (2nd Edition)
Dr. Mark Loeb, Dr. Fiona Smaill, Dr. Marek Smieja
September 2009 BMJ Books
Following the success of their original 2004 edition of Evidence Based Infectious Diseases, Drs. Loeb, Smaill, and Smieja were privileged to have the opportunity to edit this updated edition. The book is targeted to general internists and to trainees in infectious diseases and the editors hope that this new edition will bring added value while continuing to serve as an evidence-based resource for physicians who manage patients with infections.
Gerry Wright Receives Honorary Award
On June 19, 2009, during the 26th International Congress of Chemotherapy and Infection, Gerry Wright formally received an Association of Medical Microbiology and Infectious Disease (AMMI) Canada Honorary Membership.
Gerry was presented this Honorary Membership for
his contributions to the understanding of the molecular mechanisms of antibiotic resistance. His work with naturally occurring antibiotic resistance in environmental bacteria has advanced the understanding of factors leading to antibiotic resistance and discovery of new antimicrobial targets, in particular antifungal agents.
The AMMI Canada Honorary Membership is intended for those, who, while not trained specifically in medical microbiology or infectious disease, have made significant contributions to the promotion of excellence in these fields.
Michael G. DeGroote Post-Doctoral Fellowship Award
Erin Westman, a post-doctoral fellow in the Wright lab, recently received the Michael G. DeGroote Post-Doctoral Fellowship Award. This prestigious award is designed for candidates who have an exemplary academic record and are interested in pursuing post-doctoral work in one of the numerous areas of research strengths in the Faculty of Health Sciences at McMaster University. Also funded through the generosity of Michael G. DeGroote, the award provides annual support of $45,000 for three years.
PhD Student Presents Groundbreaking Research
Morgan Wyatt, a first-year PhD student and a member of the Margarvey lab, will give an oral presentation at the Society of Industrial Microbiology (SIM) annual conference and seminar at the Westin Harbour Castle in Toronto from July 26-30. This is a key international meeting focused on antibiotics and microbial biotechnology. Morgan's selection is a result of his groundbreaking research focused on small molecules from multi-drug resistant pathogens (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus).
Morgan recently presented his research at the Canadian Society for Chemistry annual conference held at the Hamilton Convention Centre where he won a best poster award. The conference had record-breaking attendance and was well represented by many large chemistry groups in Canada.
Nathan Magarvey Awarded Two Research Grants
Dr. Nathan Magarvey was recently awarded two research grants worth over $320,000.
The first grant from NSERC will fund an investigation on natural products that act as potential microbial and human cell differentiation.
The second is an IDEA grant from the Canadian Breast Cancer Research Alliance (CBCRA) which will support Dr. Magarvey’s project that involves preparing a dual-functioning inhibitor of Bcl-Xl and GRP78. These proteins are critical targets for breast cancer and Dr. Magarvey has devised a strategy that will lead to natural product-like inhibitors that will/should block the action of Bcl-Xl and GRP78 in metastatic breast cancer cells.
CBCRA's IDEA grants support innovative, new research ideas that are speculative, but have the potential for advancing scientific knowledge. They support small-scale pilot studies or investigations of concepts to permit the investigator to test out new ideas, which, although based on good science, are outside of existing conventional research paradigms and could be deemed speculative. The expectation is that these ideas, once explored, will lead to the development of proposals for more extensive research grants.
New IIDR Office Space Opens It’s Doors
The Michael G. DeGroote Institute for Infectious Disease Research (IIDR) is now located on the newly constructed second floor of the MDCL building in room 2301.
Also joining the IIDR on the second floor, is the Centre for Microbial Chemical Biology (CMCB) which is ramping up to begin research in the new common infrastructure laboratory in late summer.
The second floor will officially open it’s doors on Monday, May 4 and everyone is invited to take a look at the final construction.
Vanier CGS Award Winner
Suzanne Osborne, a doctoral student in the Coombes lab, was awarded a Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship (Vanier CGS) by the Government of Canada for her research work in gene activation during an infection with salmonella. The award is based on previous research, potential for future research excellence and the quality of the training environment.
"Suzanne was my first summer student when I joined McMaster and to watch her progression over the last three years has been impressive," says Dr. Brian Coombes. "This award is a reflection of the high standards we set in the lab and the research we're trying to achieve. The entire team is proud of Suzanne's success."
The Vanier CGS program awards 500 international and Canadian doctoral students with three-year scholarships valued at $50,000 per year and reaffirms Canada as a global centre of excellence in research and education. The program supports Canada’s science and technology policy direction, which capitalizes on people, strengthens knowledge and encourages entrepreneurial advantages to build a competitive Canada.
The program aims to attract and retain world-class doctoral students by supporting students who demonstrate a high standard of scholarly achievement in graduate studies in the social sciences and humanities, natural sciences and engineering, and health; as well as leadership skills.