Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation

Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, also known as Physiatry, is the branch of medicine concerned with the comprehensive diagnosis, medical management and rehabilitation of people of all ages with neuromusculoskeletal disorders and associated disabilities.  Physiatrists work in a diverse range of subspecialty areas to help patients with a variety of impairments related to conditions such as stroke acquired brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, amputation, and various musculoskeletal disorders.  Physiatrists play a vital role in our health care system and as the Canadian population continues to age, the demand for their services will only continue to grow.

Stopping cancer in its tracks

Published Mon Jan 26/15 11:00am.

Researcher Andrew Craig understands the importance of stopping metastasis, the leading cause of cancer-related deaths. And with an innovation grant of $193,798 from the Canadian Cancer Society (CCS), Dr. Craig and his team hope to get one step closer.

“Metastasis – or the spread of cancer from its primary tumour site to another location in the body – is a critical stage to prevent. This grant from the CCS will allow us to conduct research on metastasis and develop new tools to prevent it,” says Dr. Craig. “Many current therapies are focused on trying to shrink tumours and have a limited ability to prevent the spread of tumours.

Dr. Craig and several talented trainees are developing and testing inhibitory antibodies targeting key signals that cancer cells require for metastasis.  These novel antibodies are being developed with collaborators in Toronto, and Dr. Craig’s team is actively profiling them to identify the most effective ones against highly metastatic breast and skin cancers. 

Antibodies are proteins found in the blood that are produced to respond to and counteract foreign substances in the body, but have been increasingly used to specifically target cancer.

“This grant will allow us to identify lead antibodies and test their potency in pre-clinical models of metastatic cancer,” says Dr. Craig. “We will strive to secure the additional funding and partners that will be needed to translate these tools into new immunotherapies for clinical trials in human cancer patients.”

This grant, made possible by donations to the CCS, has attracted new post-doctoral fellows and graduate students to Dr. Craig’s research team.

“Being able to develop and maintain a strong research-intensive atmosphere is another extremely important part of receiving this grant support,” says Dr. Craig. “The opportunities for collaboration as a result of bringing in new researchers is invaluable to tackling this challenging disease.”

This funding was provided by the Canadian Cancer Society Innovation Grants program.

Funding fuels cancer research

Published Mon Jan 26/15 11:00am.

With an eye on improving survival rates and the quality of care for cancer patients, the Canada Foundation for Innovation has awarded the NCIC Clinical Trials Group (NCIC CTG) $3.8 million as part of its Major Science Initiatives.

The funding provides infrastructure support to the NCIC CTG operations and statistics office at Queen’s University.

“We are grateful CFI has pledged its support for our mission of conducting important clinical trials that allow cancer patients from across the country to access some of the most cutting-edge cancer treatments available,” says NCIC CTG director Janet Dancey.

The objective of the funding is to provide CFI funded, state-of-the-art research facilities, enabling researchers to undertake world-class research and technology development. The funding also provides governance and management oversight of these facilities.

“We undoubtedly have all been touched, one way or another, by cancer and are well aware of the impact it has on our lives and the lives of others,” says Steven Liss, Vice-Principal (Research). “The advances in prevention, diagnostics and treatment have been truly remarkable, but there is still much to do. This support from CFI will allow the NCIC Clinical Trials Group at Queen's University to provide the leadership and platform to further their critical role in advancing and implementing new approaches to diagnostics, clinical interventions and new treatments for cancer patients.”

The NCIC CTG possesses expertise and infrastructure to conduct national and international multicentre phase I-III cancer clinical trials aimed at improving the survival and quality of life of cancer patients. The funding will support cancer investigators across the country and provide them access to novel and comprehensive information technology, expertise in regulatory, ethics, safety, and on-site monitoring requirements necessary to ensure trials are compliant with Health Canada regulations.

Since its establishment in 1980, the NCIC CTG has conducted 492 trials enrolling more than 77,000 patients. The trials have led to the development and adoption of numerous cancer therapies that have improved the survival and quality of life for cancer patients and delivered a tremendous benefit to thousands of Canadians.

For more information visit the website.

Music Therapy with Hospice and Palliative Care

Published Fri Jan 23/15 3:00pm.
Presented by: Mackenzie Costron, BMT
Music Therapist and Owner of Find Your Voice Music Therapy

January 30, 2015
36 Barrie Street

1. To understand what music therapy is and how it enhances health and wellness
2. To discuss the intentional and purposeful application of music therapy techniques and interventions in hospice and palliative care
3. To explore the benefits of music therapy in hospice and palliative care

Flyer attached here

Geriatrics Program

Published Wed Jan 21/15 4:15pm.
Residents are invited to participate in the upcoming Geriatrics program, coordinated by the Continuing and Professional Development Office at Queen's.  Details are available on the CPD website and there is a discount for learners to get the resident rate of $75/program.  The discount code is PROGRAM75.

Cutting-edge technology comes to Medicine & DBMS

Published Wed Jan 21/15 11:00am.

Eight researchers at Queen’s University have been awarded $1.3 million through the Canada Foundation for Innovation’s (CFI) John R. Evans Leaders Fund. Among them are two researchers from the Faculty of Health Sciences: Stephen Archer (Cardiology) and Neil Renwick (Pathology and Molecular Medicine).

Dr. Archer is using his funding to purchase a new super resolution microscope that can see structures five times smaller than any prior light microscopes.

“This new system, one of the very few in Canada, is to imaging the cell what the Hubble Space Telescope was to imaging the solar system,” says Dr. Archer, who received $400,000 and is also funded by the Henderson Foundation. “The microscope will be used to study how and why mitochondria divide and join together. Mitochondria play a key role in diseases including lung cancer and PAH.”

Dr. Renwick is focusing on cancer diagnostics.

“The goal of my CFI project is to transform cancer diagnostics using novel approaches,” says Dr. Renwick who received $200,000. “Through the vision of the CFI, I will purchase advanced instrumentation that will allow us to profile ribonucleic acid, a molecule that carries genetic information, and visualize diseased tissues. I expect these approaches will help pathologists to diagnose and classify cancers, recommend treatments, and predict clinical outcomes at the time of specimen assessment.”

“This CFI funding, which supports the acquisition or development of new infrastructure, provides the resources to sustain world-class research and the tools to pave the way for new and innovative discoveries at Queen’s,” says Steven Liss, Vice-Principal (Research). “Our success in this recent competition across a broad range of disciplines is indicative of the leadership of our researchers in their respective fields.”

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