Thursday, 20 June 2013

The Complexity of Cancer Requires a Complex Attack Strategy

Dr. Dale Laird and Dr. Silvia Penuela have written an excellent overview of the challenges faced in the fight against cancer and the progress and promise that characterize the state of cancer research and treatment today.

Read more in the Londoner

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Relay For Life London

A group of cancer researchers from London and members of the RIOT team attended the 10th London Ontario Relay For Life. Relay For Life is a powerful fundraising event that allows people to celebrate the survivors of cancer, remember those lost to cancer, and fight back against cancer. One goal of RIOT is to encourage personal interactions between the attendees at Relay For Life and local cancer researchers.

RIOT members Saman and Michael were captured on Twitter by @LondonRelayON soliciting cancer research questions. Saman and Michael were pleased to answer a number of very good and thoughtful questions on cancer research, and privileged by the survivors and caregivers who shared their personal stories.

The RIOT team congratulates and thanks the organizers, volunteers and participants for making this year's relay great. We can't wait till next year.

Friday, 14 June 2013

Using Math to Kill Cancer Cells

Interesting article posted by the Science Blog this week. A research project funded in part by a Canadian Cancer Society Innovation Grant explores the application of mathematical models on predicting how modifying the genome of a virus might counter the anti-viral defenses of cancer cells. 

Dr. Bell and co-author Dr. Mads Kaern, an assistant professor in the University of Ottawa’s Faculty of Medicine and Canada Research Chair at the University’s Ottawa Institute of Systems Biology, led a team that has used mathematical modelling to devise strategies for making cancer cells exquisitely sensitive to virus infection — killing them without affecting normal, healthy cells.
Read more at Read more at 

Monday, 3 June 2013

Celebrating at Partners in Research National Awards

June 2, 2013 marked the first annual Partners in Research (PIR) National Awards. We are fortunate they were held right here in London, Ontario and we were able to join in the showcase of incredible scientists dedicated to excellence in both their own work and the PIR mission of "enhancing public understanding of importance of health research in conquering disease and improving the quality of life." The PIR mission has grown to include understanding the importance of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. PIR has developed innovative and accessible resources like Virtual Researchers On Call  to help teachers bring these subjects to life in the classroom.
Master of Ceremony John Davidson and Master of Ceremony Remi Quirion presented 6 awards including Biomedical Science Amabassador Award to Chris Brandl of Western University Department of Biochemistry,Schulich School of Medicine &Dentistry. We learned about the Outreach Science Ontario program that allows secondary school biology students to perform molecular cloning experiments in their class rooms. An interesting and innovative development of the OSO program is the development of an iPhone App called Biochemistry Personal Trainer, which was developed by Dr. Brandl in conjunction with Dr. Derek McLachlin. It boasts 6,000 downloads at an average rate of 25 a day. It has been downloaded in over 50 countries around the world.
We had the opportunity to meet more of the PIR staff including Executive Director Kevin Cougler who was quick to see the natural alignment of some of the PIR and RIOT goals, and the potential for a mutually enriching  collaboration. We look forward to further exploring ways in which we can work together to get the word out about the important and exciting work that is being done in the world of science today.
We enjoyed the opportunity to meet some of the founding members of PIR and introduce the work of the Research Information Outreach Team. Thank you Partners in Research for a great evening. Congratulations on celebrating your 25th anniversary!