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Research Prominence

A week of honours for Art McDonald

  • University of Toronto Chancellor Michael Wilson confers an honorary degree upon Arthur McDonald, the winner of the 2015 Nobel Prize in Physics on Thursday, June 8.
    University of Toronto Chancellor Michael Wilson confers an honorary degree upon Arthur McDonald, the winner of the 2015 Nobel Prize in Physics on Thursday, June 8. (Photo by Lisa Sakulensky)
  • Arthur McDonald receives an honorary degree from McGill University Chancellor Michael Meighen during the convocation ceremony on Monday, June 5 in Montreal.
    Arthur McDonald receives an honorary degree from McGill University Chancellor Michael Meighen during the convocation ceremony on Monday, June 5 in Montreal. (Photo provided by McGill University)
  • Arthur McDonald, third from left, stands with Rector Cam Yung, Principal Daniel Woolf, and Chancellor Jim Leech after receiving an honorary degree from Queen's. (Photo by Bernard Clark)
    Arthur McDonald, third from left, stands with Rector Cam Yung, Principal Daniel Woolf, and Chancellor Jim Leech after receiving an honorary degree from Queen's. (Photo by Bernard Clark)

It has been a busy week for Professor Emeritus Arthur McDonald, as the Nobel Laureate received three honorary degrees.

Beginning on Monday, June 5 Dr. McDonald traveled to Montreal to receive an honorary degree from McGill University. He then returned home to Queen’s where he was honoured on Wednesday, June 7 at Grant Hall. Then on Thursday, June 8 Dr. McDonald was conferred a third degree from the University of Toronto.

A faculty member of the Department of Physics, Engineering Physics and Astronomy, Dr. McDonald shared the 2015 Nobel Prize in Physics for his longtime research and groundbreaking findings into neutrinos – sub-atomic particles considered the basic building blocks of the universe.

Dr. McDonald arrived at Queen’s in 1989 and was the inaugural Gordon and Patricia Gray Chair in Particle Astrophysics. He also was the co-recipient of the 2007 Benjamin Franklin Medal in Physics and the 2016 Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics.

He continues research on neutrinos and dark matter at the SNOLAB underground laboratory near Sudbury and is a member of the Board of Directors of the Perimeter Institute of Theoretical Physics.

Raising the curtain on TECTA-PDS’s latest act

The Innovators, Entrepreneurs, and Collaborators series profiles regional innovations, startups and collaborations that are flourishing and which engage Queen’s faculty, staff and/or students.

[TECTA-PDS]
TECTA-PDS Technology Manager Eric Marcotte explains how the company's automated system for microbiological water testing works to Kingston Mayor Bryan Paterson during an open house at the firm's headquarters in downtown Kingston. (Wing Studios Photo) 

TECTA-PDS never left Kingston but today it is truly at home here.

On May 11, the manufacturer of the world’s first automated system for microbiological water testing held an open house in its corporate offices at 382 King St. E. in downtown Kingston, to celebrate the return of its ownership to Canadian hands.

These new headquarters set the stage for the latest act in a multi-year performance that has seen the company grow from lab to start-up, to scale-up, to global pacesetter in E. coli testing, a market valued at an estimated $2.2 billion a year worldwide.

TECTA-PDS has developed  the world’s first automated system for microbiological water testing. (Wing Studios Photo)

TECTA-PDS’s story begins in Kingston in the early part of this century. Seven people had died in the town of Walkerton, Ont., after drinking contaminated water in Canada’s worst-ever outbreak of E. coli. Among the factors leading to this preventable disaster were shortcomings in how water was tested for E. coli and dangerous delays caused because samples had to be sent to an outside lab. The government wanted to know what could be done to prevent such a disaster in the future. In response, an interdisciplinary group of researchers at Queen’s University joined with industrial partners to find a solution. Their goal, says Stephen Brown, the lead inventor and a professor of chemistry and environmental studies, was to develop a fully automated system that “would provide laboratory-grade results and be portable enough that you could take it to a town like Walkerton and test the water on the spot.”

Thus was Pathogen Detection Systems born.

Doug Wilton, a Queen’s engineer by training and the firm’s CEO, joined the company in 2005, becoming its second-ever employee. The firm set up in the ground floor of the Biosciences Complex at Queen’s in an incubation space controlled by KTEC, a collaboration between the university and Kingston’s economic development agency.

By 2008, says Wilton, “we had a prototype and our first regulatory approval, but we still needed a lot of commercialization work to take it to market.”

They had to find a major partner. French water giant Veolia Environment seemed a good fit.

“They were willing to take a risk on a start-up company with a technology that could potentially revolutionize water testing,” Wilton says.

Folded into Veolia’s new water monitoring division (Endetec), and with their future financing intact, the fledgling firm moved to larger labs and offices on the fourth floor of the Biosciences Complex.

For several years, Endetec continued to grow. Then, in 2014, trouble hit.

“The challenging economy led to a massive reorganization from the very top on down (at Veolia),” says Wilton.

Facing high debt levels and slow growth, a new CEO decided Veolia needed to concentrate on its core businesses. And everything else was under review. Endetec just didn’t fit.

“Our division was a luxury that could no longer be justified,” Wilton says.

However, what might have been a catastrophe for the young firm turned into an opportunity.

“They (Veolia) could have said, ‘Let’s just be done with it,’” says Wilton, and wound up Endetec completely.

Instead, in mid-2016, he was given the chance to spin off the business and create TECTA-PDS.

“I am very appreciative of the people at Veolia who made that conscious decision,” he says.

The decision cemented the company’s connection to Kingston.

“Under Veolia, we were surprised that we hadn’t been moved, and there was always a risk that we would be,” says Wilton. “But now we are able to say we’re privately held and we have no intention of going anywhere.”

Focusing on Kingston brings benefits. The key ingredient in their detection system had been produced at GreenCentre Canada since 2012; now the actual manufacture of the portable testing units has been brought home from the United Kingdom and handed over to Kingston-based Bojak Manufacturing.

“Richard (Zakrzewski, Bojak’s president) was at Transformix when they built our original prototype in 2006. When we were bringing the manufacturing back here, Richard was just starting Bojak. It’s the sort of thing that could only happen in Kingston,” says Wilton.

The company continues to work closely with Queen’s.

“We’ve had a formal research agreement with Queen’s since the beginning,” says Wilton, “and we’ve just launched a new collaboration.”

PARTEQ Innovations, Queen’s commercialization arm, helped secure their patents, and Wilton praises patent agent Stephen Scribner, who continues to work with the company on strengthening these. Over the years about 20 Queen’s students have worked on different research projects relating to the company’s products; some have gone on to join TECTA-PDS on a full-time basis.  

The company now employs about a dozen people in Kingston plus those involved in the manufacturing of the components.

“We’re very much part of the Kingston community, very much part of the Ontario community, and we’re part of this broader ecosystem of innovation, technology development and clean technology,” says Wilton.

Today the company’s products are in use in about 25 countries. They continue to focus on E. coli testing, a global market that Wilton estimates is growing at a rate of 6-7 per cent a year.

“We’re working very closely with the federal government, and by the end of this year, we’ll be in two dozen First Nations communities with our technology,” he says.

In addition, major water companies, such as the Las Vegas Valley Water District and Singapore’s Public Utilities Board are using TECTA-PDS’s automated technology. Plans are also afoot to extend the portable testing unit’s capabilities to detect other pathogens, such as Enterococcus.

“In some situations, that’s a more useful indicator than E. coli,” says Brown.

Their system is, says Wilton, “a platform technology. We’re continuously trying to expand what we test beyond water – to milks, and other food products – and there is even potential to move beyond environmental testing in a clinical direction.”

The company’s primary challenge is to remain focused.

“We probably have almost too many opportunities at this point,” says Wilton.

“Most technology start-ups have only a single act,” he adds. “Very few make it to a successful conclusion. Our first act led to our acquisition by Veolia. Although considered a successful conclusion by many, this really was just the beginning of a second, and in many ways more challenging, act of expansion and commercialization. We are so very fortunate that we are now able to embark on a third act, to continue our mandate to revolutionize water monitoring, to continue to take this Queen’s University discovery to the entire world, and to continue as a Canadian company.

“This third act is the most exciting so far.”

Queen's earns two Banting Fellowships

Two postdoctoral fellows earn one of Canada’s top honours for young researchers.

Two young researchers at Queen’s University have been awarded Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships to continue their research. Nicolle Domnik (Medicine) and Sarah Yakimowski (Biology) received two of 70 fellowships awarded across Canada this year.

Dr. Domnik is funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and Dr. Yakimowski is funded by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council. The Fellowships are designed to attract and retain top-tier post-doctoral talent, both nationally and internationally. It also positions the winners as leaders of tomorrow.

Nicolle Domnik and Sarah Yakimowski have both earned Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships.

“The Fellowship recognizes our top post-doctoral trainees as future leaders in their respective fields,” says Brenda Brouwer, Vice-Provost and Dean, School of Graduate Studies. “For Queen’s to earn two this year is a testament to Queen’s being a place where early career researchers can refine their research focus and skills, as well as work alongside leading academics.”

Dr. Yakimowski is working with Robert Colautti (Biology) on a new research project focusing on an invasive species. Amaranthus palmeri is reducing the yield of soybean, corn and cotton across the United States. This crop weed is not yet in Canada but has moved north rapidly over the past 25 years and could have a huge impact on agriculture if it makes it north of the border.

“This weed has been fought with herbicides and, as a result, A. palmeri has evolved resistance. One of my primary goals is to understand how this weed’s reproductive strategies contribute to the origin and spread of herbicide resistance. This could provide insight into novel control strategies,” says Dr. Yakimowski.

A long term goal of this research is to understand whether herbicide resistance evolved once and spread, or whether resistance is evolving independently in many locations.

She adds the funding provides an opportunity to form the basis of her research for the next decade.

Dr. Domnik has always had an interest in respiratory physiology and the Banting Fellowship supports her research with Dr. Denis O’Donnell (Respirology). Her project at Queen’s and its affiliated teaching hospitals, Kingston General and Hotel Dieu, is focused on the impact of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD; a debilitating condition primarily caused by smoking) on breathing mechanics, lung function and respiratory symptoms at night.

“The intersection of breathing mechanics and sleep in COPD is a new and important area of research that I’m excited to explore,” she says. “This award allows me to dedicate myself fully to my research for the next two years, alleviating the stresses associated with funding that many postdocs experience. The Fellowships that Sarah and I have received also speak to the high level of research being done at Queen’s. It’s an honour to receive and I am very grateful for this opportunity.”

For more information on the Banting Fellowships, please visit the website.

Study compares cancer drug cost, benefit

Queen’s University researcher Christopher Booth reveals the price of new cancer therapies is not associated with treatment effectiveness.

A new study from Queen’s University professor Christopher Booth has revealed the pricing of cancer drugs appears to have no relationship to their effectiveness.

Through the review it was revealed that the most expensive drugs were not the most beneficial.

“Most members of the public (and many patients) may not understand that when they read about a new ‘breakthrough cancer therapy’ in the media it usually does not cure cancer but extends survival by a few weeks or perhaps a few months,” says Dr. Booth (Oncology). “Given that these drugs are very expensive and have important side effects, these small improvements may not lead to real improvements in the overall health and well-being of our patients or society as a whole.”

Using frameworks developed by the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) and the European Society of Medical Oncology (ESMO), Dr. Booth and his team studied all randomized controlled trials of new cancer drugs in non-small cell lung cancer, breast cancer, colorectal cancer and pancreatic cancer over a four-year period.

The study found that there was no relationship between the price of a cancer drug and the extent to which it improves patient survival and quality of life. The authors concluded that to deliver optimal cancer care in a sustainable health system will require oncologists and policy makers to reconcile the disconnect between drug cost and clinical benefit.

“Our data does not suggest the use of these agents is inappropriate. These treatments have been established based on well-conducted clinical trials,” explains Dr. Booth. “Our concern is that the very small magnitude of benefit associated with many new treatments may not be fully appreciated by the public and by some patients.”

Dr. Booth advocates moving towards a value-based system where treatments and interventions that have a greater benefit for patients and society receive more resources than treatments that offer little benefit. He says one model that is being considered is value-based pricing where cancer drugs that offer the largest treatment benefit are sold at a higher price than drugs with negligible benefit.

“In our current system the price of a new cancer drug has no relationship to its benefit but is largely driven by the maximum price the market will bear,” says Dr. Booth. “A value-based pricing system would encourage companies and researchers to focus on developing more effective medicines by offering greater financial returns for those therapies with substantial benefit and smaller financial returns for treatments with negligible benefits. If you think about it, this relationship between quality and cost is what drives most economic transactions and it has always seemed strange to me that it does not apply to new cancer medicines.

The study was published in The Lancet Oncology.

A matter of physics

It started with a bang (the big bang that is) and ended amongst the stars.

Nobel Laureate and Professor Emeritus Arthur McDonald delivered the Herzberg Memorial Public Lecture at the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts on Monday, as part of the Canadian Association of Physicists Annual Congress, being hosted at Queen’s May28-June 2.

[Art McDonald]
Nobel Laureate and Professor Emeritus Arthur McDonald delivered the Herzberg Memorial Public Lecture at the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts on Monday. (Photo by Alex Hanes)

The CAP Congress is the most important physics conference in Canada. Every year, hundreds of Canadian and international physicists descend on the host university to communicate, present, exchange ideas, promote new research, and discuss the role of physics in Canada. This science-filled week also includes a public lecture with a speaker chosen for their merit, his or her impact on the physics community and dedication to inspiring the next generation of young innovators.

The lecture was named in honour of Nobel Laureate Gerhard Herzberg, a longstanding member of the CAP, in recognition of Dr. Herzberg’s known desire to increase public science engagement and appreciation of science amongst the public, and, particularly, youth.

Dr. McDonald continued this theme by appealing to the younger members of the audience with jokes, a promise that “science is fun,” and reminding everyone that they are sitting in a room full of “geeks looking for WIMPs” (weakly interacting massive particles). He also gave an overview of SNOLAB’s new neutrino experiment, SNO+, as well as the current dark matter program underway there. 

Dr. McDonald also discussed the history of the now completed SNO experiment, making sure he gave credit to the more than 270 people who made it possible. He made a point to acknowledge that more than 200 of the collaborators were students and post-docs; reinforcing that contributions from all levels are important.

For their work and discoveries on neutrinos Dr. McDonald and his group were awarded the 2015 Nobel Prize in Physics along with Takaaki Kajita of Japan.

After the completion of the SNO experiment the facility was expanded into SNOLAB with funding from the Canada Foundation for Innovation, a programme designed to “welcome the world to Canada”.

Dr. McDonald reiterated the importance of this initial investment and pushed home the message that “we need to be global in our outlook, in our diversity and our collaborations.”

For more information visit the CAP website.

A major step in treating genetic diseases

Queen's researchers demonstrate proof-of-concept therapy for genetic disorders.

Researchers at Queen’s University have published new findings, providing a proof-of-concept use of genetic editing tools to treat genetic diseases. The study, published in Nature Scientific Reports, offers an important first step towards treatment for a rare liver disease, as well as other disorders caused by genetic mutations.

“Using the CRISPR-Cas9 system, we have demonstrated an important proof-of-concept in using gene editing to treat genetic disorders such as Arginase-1 deficiency,” says Angie Sin, a postdoctoral research fellow in the Department of Biomedical and Molecular Sciences at Queen’s.

Dr. Sin, working under the supervision of Queen’s researcher Colin Funk (Biomedical and Molecular Sciences) examined the use of the revolutionary CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing tool, in combination with stem cell technology to repair Arginase-1 deficiency. The Arginase-1 enzyme plays an important role in the urea cycle – a key liver function that converts ammonia to urea for excretion in urine. Patients with a defective Arginase-1 coding gene are unable to convert ammonia, resulting in impaired ability to produce urea, as well as stunted growth, excess arginine in the blood, and progressive intellectual and neurological impairment.

The study offers an important first step towards treatment for a rare liver disease.

Like many genetic disorders, Arginase-1 deficiency is autosomal recessive – requiring two copies of the defective gene – and does not tend to result in symptoms before the age of three.

“Unlike many genetic disorders, there is a delay before symptoms present with Arginase-1 deficiency,” says Dr. Funk. “With this new gene editing technique, there might be a chance to cure the disease – as well as other similar disorders – much earlier.”

In testing the technique, Dr. Sin utilized a cell model with an induced genetic deletion, resulting in a defective Arginase-1 mimicking the disease in humans. Using the CRISPR system, Dr. Sin was able to reincorporate the repaired exons into the cell’s genetic structure and restore enzyme function.

While there are still many obstacles between the results of the cellular model and full-scale patient treatment, Dr. Sin explains that a new therapeutic strategy would offer tremendous benefits over current treatment methods. Current treatment for the disease is restricted to pharmacological agents, such as nitrogen-scavenging drugs, as well as protein-restricted diets. Demonstrating successful use of CRISPR gene editing technology for Arginase-1 deficiency would also offer clues as to treatment for other similar disorders.

”Using this approach may hold great promise for developing gene editing strategies to repair Arginase-1 and other similar genetic disorders,” she adds. “In current studies, we are using cells from Arginase-1-deficient patients to carry out a similar editing approach. The future goal is to transplant the corrected cells back to the patient and correct the disease. In addition, unlike the traditional gene therapy approach, there is no concern for loss of gene function over time or the potential for immune rejection.”

The full text of the study, titled Proof-of-Concept Gene Editing for the Murine Model of Inducible Arginase-1 Deficiency, is available online from Nature Science Reports.

Building the Super Soldier

Kingston Conference on International Security to examine the future of performance enhancement. 

The 12th annual Kingston Conference on International Security, taking place June 12-14, will bring together academics and military leaders to examine future enhancements to the physical, intellectual and social capabilities of soldiers. Panelists will also discuss the challenges in balancing the need for military effectiveness when enhancing individual performance with a commitment to reflect society’s values and norms.

“Different stakeholders bring with them different perspectives,” says Stefanie von Hlatky, Director of the Queen’s Centre for International and Defence Policy and co-organizer of the conference. “Academics tend to think longer term, so bringing back the implications of their research to the immediate strategic, operational and tactical impacts is made possible through the conference. For the operational community and military leaders, engaging more analytically with concepts, doctrine and strategy is not something that the rigors of the job always permit, yet those lessons can be tremendously useful.”

Dr. Stefanie von Hlatky, Director of the Queen’s Centre for International and Defence Policy, says the Kingston Conference on International Security creates opportunities to bring together academics and practitioners to exchange knowledge and examine concepts and strategies in ways that aren't always possible in the separate donmains. (Supplied Photo)

By bringing together perspectives from academia, industry and military operators, the conference allows for a more detailed and nuanced examination of military performance enhancement. Panelists will examine the current and future states of leading-edge research in performance enhancement, as well as the social aspects of the military profession, which includes gender and cultural awareness. The final panel will consider the ethical and moral implications of developing super soldiers, who must later transition back to being citizens when the mission is complete.

The conference is a collaboration between the Centre for International and Defence Policy, the Canadian Army Doctrine and Training Centre, the Strategic Studies Institute at the U.S. Army War College, and the NATO Defense College in Rome. The conference program is jointly developed by the partner groups, with an eye on the implications of international security trends for the armed forces of Canada, the U.S, and NATO allies.

“It is our hope that the attendees gain knowledge and awareness on the multiple facets of the soldier and military performance – including spiritual, physical, intellectual, emotional, cultural and familial components,” says Major-General S.C. Hetherington, Commander of the Canadian Army Doctrine and Training Centre. “More importantly, I hope they fully leverage this unique and diverse forum to contribute ideas and information on current fields of work and research akin to soldier and military performance. The Kingston Conference on International Security, as a world class international conference, bringing NATO and international perspectives, which are always valuable and informative for the attendees.”

For more information on the Kingston Conference on International Security, or to register to attend this year’s session, visit the website.

A good night's sleep

New research from Judith Davidson shows behavioural therapy helps fight chronic insomnia.

The battle against chronic insomnia is one that 12 per cent of Canadians fight every night. New research from Queen’s University’s Judith Davidson (Psychology) has shown group Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Insomnia (CBT-I) in a primary care setting is effective in treating insomnia. This is the first study of group CBT-I offered as part of routine care in a North American primary care setting.

New research from Judith Davidson could help fight chronic insomnia.

“These results have important implications for health care across the country,” says Dr. Davidson. “Insomnia, if left untreated, can lead to major depression, Type 2 diabetes, more sick days and car accidents. Medication works in the short term and drugs do help with occasional sleepless nights but we need to properly treat chronic insomnia or it’s never really cured.”

Multicomponent CBT-I typically includes sleep restriction therapy, stimulus control therapy, cognitive therapy and relaxation training provided in five or six sessions. In her study of the first 81 patients who received group CBT-I as part of routine care, 88 per cent reported no clinical insomnia after five weeks of treatment.

While the positive effects of CBT-I are obvious, bringing that therapy to chronic insomnia sufferers across Canada is a challenge, according to Dr. Davidson. The treatment is not covered by provincial health plans and primary care physicians do not have the time to deliver CBT-I therapy in a group setting – despite them often being the first point of contact for people looking for help with chronic insomnia.

“I have been working with the Kingston Family Health Team to provide this treatment right in primary care, but this is rare,” says Dr. Davidson. “Outside of primary care teams, the treatment has a cost which makes it unattainable for many people. This research shows how the treatment can be integrated into primary care and is a starting point for determining how best to bring CBT-I to more patients across the country.”

The research was published in Behavioral Sleep Medicine and co-authored by Samantha Dawson and Adrijana Krsmanovic, both doctoral students in Queen’s clinical psychology graduate program.

Queen’s invests in 20 faculty researchers

Queen’s University will be funding the research of 20 faculty members following their successful applications to the Queen’s Research Opportunities Fund (QROF). Launched in 2015, QROF represents a strategic internal investment in areas of institutional research strength that provides researchers and scholars with the opportunity to accelerate their programs and research goals.

“Research is a core component of the mission of Queen’s University, and a key driver of our Strategic Framework,” says John Fisher, Interim Vice-Principal (Research). “Through the QROF program, we are making important internal investments that present new opportunities to build on research excellence and to enhance success of our faculty with external agencies and non-governmental organizations. I look forward to seeing the project outcomes for this year’s recipients.”

See the full list of funded projects, and learn more about one of the funded projects, below.


[Dr. Karine Bertrand]
Karine Bertrand, one of this year's recipients of QROF funding. Dr. Bertrand is an associate professor within the department of Film and Media, and teaches a course in Indigenous Women's Film and Media. (University Communications)

Film can be used to educate, to document, and to tell stories. Video works can also spark conversations about topics both inspiring and difficult. In doing so, film can build culture and understanding among different peoples – and, sometimes, we discover we are not so different after all.

This has been one early finding of Assistant Professor Karine Bertrand’s work through her project, “From Arnait Video Productions (Nunavut) to Video in the Villages (Brazil): developing a network of the Americas for Indigenous women filmmakers”. Dr. Bertrand, who teaches in the Department of Film and Media, is working to establish a film database for Indigenous women filmmakers to help them leverage what some call the modern ‘talking stick’ – a way for Indigenous women to make their voice heard on important subjects.

Dr. Bertrand is one of the recipients of funding through QROF 2017 under the category of “Research Leaders.” With this funding, one of her goals is to build a network that will allow Indigenous women filmmakers across North and South America to communicate with, support, and learn from each other. She is partnering with Indigenous filmmaker Sonia Bonspille Boileau, as well as Indigenous elders and Indigenous students at Queen’s, to help bring her vision to life.

“I have been teaching a course on Indigenous women’s film and media for the last few years and looking at a lot of different video works from the Americas and Oceania, and I realized that it is really hard to get a hold of these films,” Dr. Bertrand explains. “And, despite the fact many of these female Indigenous filmmakers are thousands of miles away from each other, they are living the same realities. If they could share and communicate about their experiences, it might be able to help them in the healing process. It is so inspiring to think that maybe we can make a difference for these women.”

Dr. Bertrand hopes to launch the database within two years, and is currently consulting with the filmmakers about the best approach and seeking tech-savvy students who could assist. In the meantime, she has successfully reached out to the Four Directions Aboriginal Student Centre, whose elders are from Tyendinaga, and local Indigenous communities, including her community in Kitigan Zibi and the Outaouais region, to seek their blessing on the project.

With the support from the QROF, Dr. Bertrand also aims to establish a Minority Women’s Film and Media Production Centre here at Queen’s, and host a biennial conference showcasing minority women’s cinema with the first conference taking place in 2018. She believes there would be significant interest in the topic – 99 per cent of students enrolled in her Indigenous Women’s Film and Media course are non-Indigenous, and many of her fellow faculty have expressed their support for such a centre.

Below, please find the full list of this year’s QROF recipients. Thank you to all researchers who applied, and congratulations to all recipients.


Research Leaders’ Fund

Crudden, Cathleen

Chemistry

Carbon-based ligands for metal surfaces: a revolution in biosensing

$50,000

Jessop, Philip

Chemistry

Application of green chemistry concepts to CMF derived biofuels

$50,000

Lai, Yongjun

Mechanical and Materials Engineering

Novel wearable technology for better vision

$49,112

Renwick, Neil

Pathology and Molecular Medicine

Accelerating RNA-guided diagnostics through accurate RNA detection in neuroendocrine tumor liquid samples and cell lines

$50,000

Bertrand, Karine

Film and Media

From Arnait Video Productions (Nunavut) to Video in the Villages (Brazil): developing a network of the Americas for Indigenous women filmmakers

$50,000

International Fund

Cramm, Heidi

Rehabilitation Therapy/CIMVHR

Military & veteran family health research: a global alliance

$20,000

Aldersey, Heather

School of Rehabilitation Therapy

Setting priorities for sex and relationship education for women with intellectual disabilities (ID) in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and their families

$20,000

Mousavi, Parvin

School of Computing

Improved diagnosis and prognosis of prostate cancer using deep learning and multi-parametric medical imaging

$15,000

Cunningham, Michael

Chemical Engineering

Sustainable materials derived from natural polymers as substitutes for petroleum-based synthetic polymers

$20,000

Ross, Robert

Kinesiology and Health Studies

Exercise and metabolomics – a novel approach to understanding the mechanisms by which exercise improves cardiometabolic health

$16,750

Fichtinger, Gabor

School of Computing

The integration of the Dartmouth electrical impedance imaging technology with the Queen's NaviKnife real-time electromagnetic breast surgery navigation system

$4,100

Post-Doctoral Fellow Fund

Mousavi, Parvin - Anas, Emran Mohammad Abu

School of Computing

No Title

$45,000

Mulligan, Lois - Moodley, Serisha

Cancer Biology & Genetics

Evaluating RET-inhibitors in lung cancer growth and metastasis

$45,000

French, Simon - Auais, Mohammad

Rehabilitation Therapy

No Title

$45,000

Arts Fund

Artistic Production

Renders, Kim

Dan School of Drama and Music

Rhinoceros or What's Different About Me

$5,000

Rogalsky, Matthew

Dan School of Drama and Music

Purchase of specialized loudspeakers for investigation and experimentation on an Indigenous language sound installation project

$2,742

Anweiler, Rebecca

Fine Art (Visual Art) Program

Animal/Séance: exhibition at Modern Fuel Artist-Run Centre's State of Flux Gallery, Kingston, Ontario

$4,900

Wanless, Gregory

Dan School of Drama and Music

Support for The Eliza Show

$5,000

Visiting Artist Residency

McKegney, Sam

English

“Conversation over co-existence: The limitless possibilities of poetic practice”
A Writer’s Residency featuring Karen Solie

$13,000

Kibbins, Garry

Film and Media

Richard Ibghy and Marilou Lemmens: The golden USB

$9,401

 

To learn more about the QROF program, click here.

Looking at the universe with 'New Eyes'

  • Nobel Laureate and Professor Emeritus Art McDonald helps open the New Eyes on the Universe exhibit on Friday, May 26. The exhibit is open to the public at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre from May 27-July 7.
    Nobel Laureate and Professor Emeritus Art McDonald helps open the New Eyes on the Universe exhibit on Friday, May 26. The exhibit is open to the public at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre from May 27-July 7.
  • One of the most popular features of the New Eyes on the Universe exhibit is a life-size virtual display of Art McDonald, presenting information about the work of SNO and SNOLAB.
    One of the most popular features of the New Eyes on the Universe exhibit is a life-size virtual display of Art McDonald, presenting information about the work of SNO and SNOLAB.
  • Art McDonald acknowledges the contributions of Gordon and Patricia Gray, the sponsors of the Gordon and Patricia Gray Chair in Particle Astrophysics, a position he once held at Queen's University.
    Art McDonald acknowledges the contributions of Gordon and Patricia Gray, the sponsors of the Gordon and Patricia Gray Chair in Particle Astrophysics, a position he once held at Queen's University.
  • Members of the Queen's and Kingston communities tour through the New Eyes on the Universe exhibit during a special opening event at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre on Friday, May 26.
    Members of the Queen's and Kingston communities tour through the New Eyes on the Universe exhibit during a special opening event at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre on Friday, May 26.
  • Art McDonald cuts the ribbon to officially open the New Eyes on the Universe exhibit alongside, from left, Principal Daniel Woolf, student Elizabeth Fletcher, MPP for Kingston and the Islands Sophie Kiwala and David Walker, Chair, Executive Committee for Queen’s 175th Anniversary.
    Art McDonald cuts the ribbon to officially open the New Eyes on the Universe exhibit alongside, from left, Principal Daniel Woolf, student Elizabeth Fletcher, MPP for Kingston and the Islands Sophie Kiwala and David Walker, Chair, Executive Committee for Queen’s 175th Anniversary.

Nobel Laureate Arthur McDonald helped kick off an interactive exhibit highlighting the discoveries of the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory (SNO) project and the ongoing experiments by Queen’s researchers at the SNOLAB underground facility.

[Queen's 175th anniversary]
Queen's 175th anniversary

A special event was held Friday at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre where the exhibit will be on display from May 27-July 7. Queen’s is hosting the exhibit as part of its 175th anniversary celebrations, which will conclude later this summer.

Dr. McDonald shared the 2015 Nobel Prize in Physics for proving that solar neutrinos change their flavour en route to Earth, an important discovery for explaining the structure of the universe and the nature of matter.

The exhibit, which debuted July 1, 2016 at Canada House in London before touring across Canada, features 40 panels presenting the history and development of SNO and SNOLAB, located two kilometres below the surface in the Vale Creighton Mine near Sudbury. Video kiosks allow visitors to explore themes and offer a virtual tour of SNOLAB, while, through a life-size virtual display, Dr. McDonald presents information about the work of SNO and SNOLAB and his perspective on the future.

Exhibit artifacts include unique detector components developed especially for SNO, as well as a scale model of the SNO detector.

Admission to the exhibit and the Agnes is free for everyone.

The SNOLAB Institute is operated under a trust agreement between Queen’s University, Carleton University, University of Alberta, Laurentian University, Université de Montréal, and Vale, and includes external and international membership from both academic and industrial sectors. 

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