Analysis of transcriptional targets of Sox9 during embryonic heart valve development reveals a critical network of transcription factors
Dr. Albrecht’s research addressed the mechanisms behind the development of Diabetes. He showed that endosomes of the beta-cell can direct insulin signaling and contribute to the regulation of cellular calcium content. Understanding these processes helps to develop therapeutics directed towards the treatment of Diabetes.
Dr. Aftab studied ways in which a protein that mediates cell-to-cell communication influences the migration of brain cancer cells. She showed that reducing cell-to-cell communication increases the rate and pattern of brain cancer cell migration. Since migration of these cells created a barrier to treatment, her finding may lead to improved therapies.
Dr. Li identified a novel phosphorylation site on a protein, Gp78, that , in response to cellular stress signaling, regulates its ability to degrade various proteins, including itself and a cancer suppressor. These studies further our understanding of Gp78’s function in cancer progression and metastasis.
Dr. Mehran was able to show for the first time and conclusively that high fat diet induced hyperinsulimenia is required for diet induced obesity. Dr. Mehran was also able to irrefutably show that mammalian neurons do express insulin. Before this work, these phenomena were highly debated topics but never proven.
Dr. Asghari examined the distribution and function of Ryanodine Receptors, which are calcium channels in heart muscles. Her work provided a new mechanism by which the contraction of heart may be regulated. These findings might open up new avenues to heart disease therapies.
Dr. Castellanos studied how differences in the brains of females and males are generated. By studying Drosophila, she found that making a female versus a male brain requires distinct sex-specific genetic mechanisms. Her studies unveil unexpected complexity in the genetic mechanisms that generate sex differences in the brain.
Dr. Denroche studied the hormone Leptin as a treatment to lower blood sugar in a mouse model of Type 1 diabetes. Her work revealed some of the potential benefits and limitations of Leptin as an alternate or adjunct therapy to insulin for Type 1 diabetes. This research helped to uncover the molecular mechanism behind the anti-diabetic actions of Leptin.
Dr. Gage examined how human stem cells can be coaxed to form pancreatic cells that make hormones such as insulin. His studies describe how simple and complex cues influence which hormone a pancreatic cell chooses to take. This work helps build a roadmap of human stem cell development which may lead to new stem cell-based therapies for Diabetes.
A hallmark of diabetes is the loss of insulin producing beta-cells in the pancreas. Dr. Yang discovered and characterized novel factors that promote the survival of beta-cells under conditions found in diabetic patients. Her studies have important implications for the development of novel therapies for the treatment of type 1 and type 2 diabetes.
Dr. Hosseini-Farahabadi discovered the important roles of a secreted protein called Wint5a [WINT-5-A] during normal beak development in chickens. She showed how changes in the amount of the protein in chickens can cause facial defects, such as loss o skeletal tissues. The findings of this study can benefit biological science and clinical studies.
Dr. Freeman collaborated on projects with the University of Calgary and the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto to understand how cells interact and interpret their surroundings. His work uncovered mechanisms that control thresholds for cellular responses in normal and cancer cells. These findings will inform vaccine design and cancer therapies.
Dr. Ellis studied how cells interact with their environment to form tissues and organs during animal development. Her work characterized molecular mechanisms that ensure each cell is in the right place at the right time. Her findings have implications for our understanding of how tissues form, and how these processes may be altered during disease.
Dr. Shin uncovered a new mechanism of lipid-mediated signal transduction where certain signaling lipids are capable of sensing changes in intracellular pH. These findings increase our fundamental understanding of how cells regulate their many cellular processes.
Dr. Viveiros used Caenorhabditis elegans as a model to study how muscle cells migrate and organize during embryogenesis. His studies identified a number of well-conserved components involved in regulating these processes. His work may aid further research into mammalian muscle morphogenesis and regeneration.
Dr. Chao studied cell biology in budding yeast. His research discovered how the cell orchestrates the events in cell division by restricting the diffusion of membrane proteins between the mother and daughter cells. His research contributes to understanding the spatial regulation of proteins and their diverse activities in eukaryotic cells.
Dr. Tham’s research identified the processes involved in establishing certain aspects of the structure of the kidney and of the brain. His findings may lead to the discovery of novel treatments for some diseases, including the abormal accumulations of water in the brain tissue that may occur following a stroke.
Dr. Young investigated reproductive processes at the cellular level. Her work involved the development of a technique that prevents sperm cells from reaching maturation. This research contributes to our understanding of cell to cell interactions in general and may provide insight into certain types of male infertility.
Dr. Bond studied the evolution, regulation, and function of the cell membrane proteins known as Pannexins. This work advances our basic understanding of the origins of these proteins and what they do at the molecular level. The research identified a relationship between Pannexin 3 and normal fetal bone development.
Dr. Fairbank studied the ways in which cells protect themselves against stress and death. She investigated the role of a particular protein known as gp78, and examined previously unknown ways in which groups of proteins known as G proteins interact. This research deepens our understanding of the complex biology of cell survival and adaptation.
Dr. Eade used the fruit fly as a model in order to develop a method of disrupting the function of genes in the adult brain. He discovered a distinct mechanism that regulates genes and maintains the function and identity of brain cells throughout life. This work has implications for the treatment of age-related degenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s.
Dr. Veverytsa studied nerve cell development in the brain. She discovered a novel timing mechanism that is built into some neurons to trigger their functional maturation at a specific time to change the brain circuit in which they operate. This has profound implications for understanding mental disorders such as schizophrenia.
Dr. Lai investigated the roles of a novel protein family responsible for cell-to-cell communication in the central nervous system. His work led to the first description of how this protein family enhances neuronal maturation, as well as how it suppresses tumour growth in brain cancer.
Dr. Cina investigated the role of a certain protein isoform of a family of proteins responsible for communication between neighboring cells in brain development. She showed that the protein is required in directing neuronal migration in the mouse brain. This research has implications for understanding the spectrum of human neuronal migration disorders.
Dr. Graves studied how normal and cancerous cells in the breast are organized. She showed that high levels of the molecule podocalyxin, which correlates with poor outcome in cancer patients, alters breast tumor cell shape, and aids their growth and motility. Thus, podocalyxin may act at a critical stage when breast tumors become metastatic.