Genomics Blog

April 17, 2015 1:55 PM
Canada's Minister of Science and Technology welcomes you to DNA Day
Filed Under: Mikenomics | 0 Comments
Francois Bernier & Jay IngramWe're pretty excited to see that our 5th DNA Day in Canada has come together to bring some of Canada's best genetics experts online so you can learn more about genetics and how your DNA makes you who you are.  We did a technical rehearsal last week to make sure our Google video Hangout was going to work in the Cybera video room and it looks great thanks to their help.
The Hangout will feature Dr. Francois Bernier, head of the Department of Medical Genetics at the Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary, and Jay Ingram a well know Canadian science broadcaster and founder of Beakerhead. (pictured at right). Also joining us from Edmonton on the hangout will be Dr. Carolyn Fitzsimmons,  Adjunct Professor at the University of Alberta's Department of Agricultural, Food, and Nutritional Science. She specializes in livestock genetics, so paired with Dr. Bernier we'll have the bases covered.
April 15, 2015 9:25 AM
Genetically engineered Salmonella promising as anti-cancer therapy
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Media Release, Washington, DC, April 14, 2015 -
A new study has demonstrated that genetically modified Salmonella can be used to kill cancer cells. The study is published in this week's issue of mBio, an American Society for Microbiology online-only, open access journal.

"There has long been interest in using genetically engineered microbes to target and destroy cells within solid tumors. I think this study goes a significant way in developing some strategies that will help in the overall means of using Salmonella as part of a cancer therapy," said Roy Curtiss, III, PhD, who was involved with the research. Dr. Curtiss is University Professor of Microbiology and Director, Center for Infectious Diseases and Vaccinology and Center for Microbial Genetic Engineering, the Biodesign Institute, Arizona State University.
April 9, 2015 2:28 PM
Bee numbers are dropping but all is not lost
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People and bees go together - even if there is the occasional misstep resulting in a sting. We rely on bees to pollinate everything from our favourite flowers to the crops we need for food. In Alberta, our major cash crop Hybrid Canola would not survive if the bees stopped flitting from plant to plant. If you take into account all the economic factors and spin-offs from the province's canola crop, about 80,000 bee colonies ensure the viability of a 4 billion dollar sector. Yes - billions.
With bee populations in decline around the world, there is good reason to worry about not just the economic consequences, but what it could eventually mean to our food supply.
Freelance broadcaster Don Hill talked to Dr. Leonard Foster, an Associate Professor in Biochemistry at UBC and a Genome Canada funded researcher studying bee populations and genetics.  As you can hear in our latest podcast installment, Dr. Foster says there is hope.
April 6, 2015 4:16 PM
Inheritance: How our Genes Change our Lives - a review
Filed Under: Gerry Ward | 0 Comments
Recently, as I was browsing the science section of my local bookstore, I spotted a very new release by Sharon Moalem. I was well aware of this author as I had previously reviewed his excellent book Survival of the Sickest. I like his style. He starts with case studies from his practice and then works through the algorithms of his thought processes as he solves medical mysteries. Along the way he gives us a great deal of information regarding not just the specific problem, but the various other diseases that may have been considered when initially presented with the list of symptoms.

In his most recent book Inheritance: How Our Genes Change Our Lives and Our Lives Change Our Genes, Moalem takes us on a quick journey through our genome...
March 30, 2015 8:14 AM
Genome Canada unveils Canada’s new Genomics Innovation Network
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Media Release, March 31, 2015, Ottawa, ON – Genome Canada is pleased to announce a $15.5 million investment in Canada’s new Genomics Innovation Network. The Network is comprised of ten “Nodes,” each receiving core operational funding from Genome Canada, with matching funds from various public and private sector partners.
The Genomics Innovation Network is designed to allow innovation centres across Canada to collaborate and harness their collective power for the advancement of genomics research. Each Node provides Canadian and international researchers with access to the leading-edge technologies required for research in genomics, metabolomics, proteomics and related areas. These Nodes are also well positioned to push the boundaries in terms of developing new technologies in genomics and related sciences.
March 24, 2015 9:28 AM
Youth Science Outreach Programs Receive Government of Canada Funding, Southern Alberta Students to Benefit
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Media Release, March 18, 2015. More southern Alberta students will experience science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) programs thanks to a Government of Canada investment that supports the Actua network, including the Destination Exploration program at the University of Lethbridge.

The Government’s Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) announced today $3.6 million in PromoScience support to 66 recipients engaging over a million young Canadians. Further, the government will be increasing its support for science promotion activities to $10.9 million per year.