Statistical Modeling of Infarct Growth in Acute Ischemic Stroke

Perfusion imaging with a CT scanner provides important information about blood flow and, in acute ischemic stroke, highlights regions of brain infarct, where tissue has died because of a lack of blood flow. This infarct region continues to grow over time until blood flow is restored. Being able to predict the rate of infarct growth would provide doctors with a key piece of information (currently unavailable) that would help them decide on a course of treatment.

Web-based Goal Management Training™ in older adults with cognitive impairment: a randomized-controlled trial examining feasibility and efficacy - Year two

As the Canadian population is aging, more and more Canadians will show cognitive decline. Aging and certain types of
neurological disorders is often associated with deficits in executive functions: goal maintenance, planning, task
switching and attention. These functions are critical for the maintenance of functional independence. Few validated
rehabilitation approaches for these types of deficits exist. One rehabilitation approach, Goal Management Training™
(GMT), has shown promise. In its standard implementation, GMT is led in small groups.

NGS-based estimation of quality of selective pre-amplification of bacterial RRN operon using Phi29

Rapid identification of bacteria in blood is important for the early identification of infection and emergence of resistance to therapy. There is no wishful, fast and simple, technological solution for this quest. Some of infections are life-threatening and requires fast and focused drug treatment as soon as possible. The present approach is to use empirical therapy and wait for culture results (if positive) to modify treatment, i.e. to remove unaffected drugs and add/increase drugs which will attenuate identified pathogen.

Development and validation of a tool for the measurement of hearing aid sound quality

Hearing aids are now fully digital, advanced signal processors. Studies show that the sound quality of today’s hearing aids is important, and may impact how a hearing aid user enjoys music. Few tools are available for clinicians to measure hearing aid sound quality in daily practice. In this project, we will develop and implement a tool for this purpose.

Deciphering the role of the tumor suppressor p53 in regulating treatment-induced ovarian cancer cell fate decisions in vivo

As the most lethal gynaecological cancer, ovarian cancers not only threaten lives of many women worldwide, but health side effects also burdens the life of millions patients following treatments. Novel therapeutic methods aiming at increasing the long-term survival of patients and decreasing health side effects associated with treatment is critical. We have already found that current chemotherapy protocols induce a very interesting phenomenon – cellular senescence - in treated cells. Senescence is thought to be beneficial in cancer therapy under certain conditions.

Assessment of Tissue Viability in the Lower Extremity of Diabetic Patients

In Canada, people with diabetes are 20x more likely to have an amputation of their lower limb than the general population. Having a diabetic foot ulcer (DFU) increases the risk of amputation by 50%. Early assessment and treatment of a patient’s DFU can prevent amputation, but patients with diabetes often lose sensation in their limbs, and may not even realize they have a DFU. There are currently no easily accessible early warning tools for DFUs. To address this need, we have invented a non-invasive device for DFU assessment, and are now optimizing it for use in patients at St.

Microbiota characterization and modulation through the use of generated probiotic strains to combat colitis-associated colon cancer

A higher incidence of colon cancer is reported in populations consuming high amounts of red meat, as well as in patients with inflammatory bowel disease, where gut bacteria participate in the development of inflammation. We found that dietary supplementation with heme, an element found at high levels in blood, is detrimental to gut health and it fosters the growth of harmful bacteria. In this project, we propose to establish new procedures for both the manipulation of the gut bacteria (microbiota), as well as its characterization using a new state of the art sequencer.

In-silico identification of driver alterations and prediction of therapeutics targeting actionable drivers in prostate cancer

Cancer arises as a result of deleterious aberrations in the DNA, RNA and proteins of cells. The accumulation of genetic abnormalities, over lifetime, perturbs critical functions of cells, which may ultimately give rise to tumor. However, vast majority of these aberrations are not essential and only small fractions, known as “driver” genes, are critical for tumor growth. Identification of driver aberrations is a challenging task, but is critical for optimal cancer management. Prostate cancer (PCa) is the most common cancer to affect Canadian men.

An Evaluation of the Sam Sullivan Disability Foundation

The Sam Sullivan Disability Foundation (SSDF) is a fundraising entity supporting six not-for-profit societies that provide opportunities for social engagement for people with disabilities. The six societies provide design opportunities for accessibility solutions; connect people with employment, training, and social opportunities in the community; and make sailing, music, gardening, and the great outdoors more accessible. This research project will look at the impact and effectiveness of the SSDF programming on the lives of people with disabilities.

Identification of Blood Biomarkers for Diagnosis of Peripheral Arterial Disease

Fasting blood samples from persons with Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD) and healthy individuals were previously collected during a prior Mitacs project.
A comparative analysis of the blood samples by metabolomics will be performed to identify potential biomarkers.
The intern will assist with the necessary correlation analysis for selecting compounds capable of serving as blood biomarkers for PAD.
Koven expects to directly benefit from the outcome(s) of this research by having the opportunity to commercialize any promising blood biomarker(s) into a diagnostic kit for early diagnosis of PAD.