III Newsletter – July 2015

Message from the Scientific Director

It’s been another busy quarter for the CIHR Institute of Infection and Immunity (III). We visited the research community in London, Ontario May 12th  and 13th  for our 44th  Institute Advisory Board meeting (page 2).  In May, III held its 6th  New Investigator Forum in Lac Delage, Quebec. Forty-nine new investigators were gathered and provided with information critical to the development of their thriving careers in research (page 2). III was also active on the front of infectious disease preparedness organizing an apropos panel for the Canadian Public Health Association annual conference held in Vancouver in late May (page 3).  We were also present in Cape Town, South Africa, May 4-5 as Vice-chair of  GloPID-R (Global Research Collaboration for Infectious Disease Preparedness). As well, III was part of the inaugural Pathways Annual Gathering last March where Aboriginal partners, and partner Institutes, met and discussed the progress of the Signature Initiative (page 3). Finally, the 2nd annual conference of the Canadian National Transplantation Research Program (CNTRP) was held recently in Montebello, Quebec, where the considerable progress achieve by this group was presented (page 4).

I encourage all of you to read our section on funding opportunities (page 5). There are award programs for New Investigator salary and Doctoral Research stipends, as well as opportunities in Intersectoral Prevention Research, cohort registry, Planning and Dissemination, and much more. It also includes the upcoming Foundation and Project Scheme competitions as well as the last launches of Knowledge Translation and Commercialization grants.

On the antimicrobial resistance (AMR) front we are happy to report that results of the first call of the Joint Programming Initiative on Antimicrobial Resistance (JPI-AMR) have been officially announced (page 6). Congratulation again to the  grantees.

It’s always a great pleasure to see members from the III community succeed in their research. On this note, I would like to congratulate one of the National CIHR Research Training Program in Hepatitis C (NCRTP-HepC) trainees, Anastasia Hyrina, for her 2015 ISAR Women in Science Career Development Award (page 3).

I wish all of you a great summer, filled with successful research.

Marc Ouellette

News from the Institute Advisory Board

Photo: Dr. Bhagirath Sing, Dr. Lillian Barra, Dr. John McCormick, Dr. Marc Ouellette, Dr. Anthony Jevnikar, Dr. Eric Arts

The Institute had its Spring IAB meeting in London, Ontario on May 12th and 13th. The board and staff had the opportunity to meet the research community of Western University. During the visit, Dr. Anthony Jevnikar, chair of III IAB and professor in the division of Nephrology, and in the department of Microbiology and Immunology at Western University, welcomed the board and introduced the speakers. Dr. Eric Arts, Dr. John McCormick and Dr. Lillian Barra presented their research programs to the board members and CIHR staff.

The New Investigator Forum 2015

The New Investigator Forum took place May 29-31, 2015 in Lac Delage, Quebec. Set in an enchanting site, the forum welcomed 49 early-career investigators from all CIHR research themes. Over the course of the weekend, they benefitted from expert advice provided by experienced researchers from a range of subject areas.

Photo: Dr. Irah King, Dr. Marc Ouellette, Dr. Bebhinn Treanor

The Bhagirath Singh Early Career Awards in Infection and Immunity for 2013 and 2014 were presented during the forum. The recipients were Dr. Irah King (McGill University), and Dr. Bebhinn Treanor (University of Toronto-Scarborough). The two awardees were ranked first amongst new investigators in the open competitions of 2013 and 2014, respectively. Dr. King’s research is focused on mucosal immunity (for additional information, please see the article on Dr. King in the  February 2014 issue). His project is entitled “T follicular helper cell differentiation and function in immunity and infection”. Dr. Bebhinn Treanor works on the activation of B cell receptors (for additional information, please see the article on Dr. Treanor in the March 2015 issue). The title of her grant application is “Molecular mechanisms regulating B cell signalling and activation”.

2015 ISAR Women in Science Career Development Award to Anastasia Hyrina

Anastasia Hyrina is a PhD candidate at the University of British Columbia studying the interplay between dengue and hepatitis C viruses and host lipid metabolic pathways. She is a scholar of the National CIHR Research Training Program in Hepatitis C and is highly involved in teaching and community outreach activities.

She is the recipient of the International Society for Antiviral Research (ISAR) – Women in Science (WIS) Career Development Award which supports the professional development of women with potential for significant contribution in the field of Antiviral Research. In addition, Anastasia received a Travel Award from the ISAR to defray the cost of attending the 28th International Conference on Antiviral Research conference in Italy (May 11 – 15, 2015) and present at the international conference where she received the ISAR WIS Career Development Award.

Congratulations Anastasia!

Panel on Microbial Threats Preparedness at Public Health 2015

Photo: Dr. John Spika, Dr. Cornelius Schmaltz, Dr. Marc Ouellette, Dr. Scott Halperin, Dr. Trina Racine

The  Institute  of  Infection  and  Immunity  participated  in  Public  Health  2015;  the  annual  conference  of  the  Canadian Public Health Association - held in Vancouver. For the occasion, III organized a panel which convened on May 27th  on the topic of “Response to threats: Infectious disease outbreaks and the role of Canadian research”. The panel was chaired by Marc Ouellette, our Institute’s Scientific Director, and the expert panellists were: Dr. John Spika, Director General, Centre for Immunization and Respiratory and Infectious Diseases, Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC); Dr. Scott Halperin, Professor of Pediatrics, Microbiology and Immunology at Dalhousie University and NPI of the Canadian Immunization Research Network (CIRN); Dr. Cornelius Schmaltz, Deputy Head of Unit, DG Research and Innovation, Infectious Diseases and Public Health, European Commission; and Dr. Trina Racine, Research Fellow and Study Coordinator, Special Pathogens, National Microbiology Laboratory (PHAC).

Pathways Annual Gathering

The Pathways to Health Equity for Aboriginal Peoples Signature Initiative aims to develop the evidence base for designing, offering, implementing and scaling-up programs and policies that promote health and health equity for Aboriginal Peoples in four priority areas: suicide prevention, tuberculosis, diabetes/obesity and oral health.

On March 23-25, in Ottawa, the inaugural Pathways Annual Gathering brought together researchers and Indigenous community partners to discuss research progress in these priority areas. III and other partner Institutes were also present. III took an active role in moderating a session on tuberculosis, a disease affecting a disproportionate number of Aboriginals in Canada.

2nd Annual CNTRP Scientific Meeting

The 2nd Annual Canadian National Transplant Research Program took place June 8th to 10th 2015 in Montebello, Quebec. In addition to the members of the CNTRP networks, the following partners were also present: Dr. Marc Ouellette (CIHR-III); Dr. Jean Rouleau (CIHR-ICRH); Hélène Campbell (Senior Advisory Council); Sandra Holdsworth (Canadian Transplant Association); Dr. Niobe Thompson (Clearwater Media); and Dr. Helen Loughrey (CIHR). The meeting included several presentations on diverse topics related to transplantation such as the role of inflammation in tranplant rejection, ex vivo organ repair, and pediatric patients. A joint session with the Canadian Critical Care Trials Group (CCCTG) was also included in the program.

Intersectoral Prevention Research Grants

III is pleased to announce the launch of a new funding opportunity within CIHR’s Environments and Health Signature Initiative(EHSI): Team Grants – Intersectoral Prevention Research. Through this funding opportunity, CIHR will support multi- year research conducted by interdisciplinary and intersectoral teams to study the health impacts of policies, regulations and other approaches. Research proposals must be relevant to one of 3 priority research areas: agri-food production; resource development, and urban form. By catalyzing and supporting programmatic research involving multiple disciplines, sectors within and outside of health, and across jurisdictions, we seek to create new knowledge and promote its uptake and application, and also to leverage the wealth of expertise in the fields of health and environmental research to create a new and productive research community. $18.9 million over 7 years is available from CIHR for this funding opportunity. The Application Deadline for the mandatory Letter of Intent phase is October 1, 2015.

Federal Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR)

On March 31st, the Government of Canada launched the Federal Action Plan on Antimicrobial Resistance and Use in Canada: Building on the Federal Framework for Action. The Government of Canada is committed to taking action to prevent, limit, and control the emergence and spread of AMR. This Action Plan builds on the strategic areas outlined in the Framework by identifying concrete steps that will be undertaken by the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC), Health Canada (HC), the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC), the National Research Council (NRC), and Industry Canada (IC).

Funding Opportunities

New Investigator Salary Award – Winter 2015 Priority Announcement

Application Deadline: 2015-12-01
Anticipated Notice of Decision: 2016-06-30
Funding Start Date: 2016-07-01

Doctoral  Research Award: Fall 2015 Priority Announcement

Application Deadline: 2015-10-01
Anticipated Notice of Decision: 2016-04-15
Funding Start Date: 2016-05-01

Environments and Health: Team Grants in Intersectoral Prevention Research

Phase 1: Letter of Intent
Application Deadline: 2015-10-01
Anticipated Notice of Decision: 2016-02-12
Funding Start Date: 2016-02-01
Phase 2: Application
Application Deadline: 2016-07-13
Anticipated Notice of Decision: 2016-11-30
Funding Start Date: 2016-12-01

Programmatic Grants in Environments,Genes and Chronic Disease

Application deadline: 2015-09-17 (for those invited following acceptance of a letter of intent).
Anticipated notice of decision: 2016-01-29
Funding start date: 2016-01-01

Canadian DOHaD Cohort Registry

Application: 2015-10-01
Application Notice of Decision: 2016-03-01
Funding begins: 2016-04-01

Team Grant – Pathways Implementation research Team – Component 2

Application Deadline: 2015-09-15
Anticipated Notice of Decision: 2016-01-29
Funding Start Date: 2016-01-01

Foundation Scheme : 2015 2nd Live Pilot

Registration Deadline: 2015-07-27
Application Stage 1 Deadline: 2015-09-15
Anticipated Stage 1 Notice of Decision: 2015-12-01
Application Stage 2 Deadline: 2016-02-05
Anticipated Stage 2 Notice of Decision: 2016-05-16
Anticipated Stage 3 Notice of Decision: 2016-07-15
Funding Start Date: 2016-07-01

Project  Scheme: 2016 1st Live Pilot

Registration Deadline: 2016-01-18
Application Deadline: 2016-03-01
Anticipated Stage 1 Notice of Decision: 2016-05-16
Anticipated Stage 2 Notice of Decision: 2016-07-15
Funding Start Date: 2016-07-01
There is now no limit to the number of applications an individual can submit to the Project Scheme per competition and/or per calendar year.

Planning  and Dissemination Grants– Institute/Initiative Community Support (Summer 2015 Competition)

Application Deadline: 2015-08-18
Anticipated Notice of Decision: 2015-12-21
Funding Start Date: 2016-01-01

Final Launch of the Knowledge Translation & Commercialization Funding Opportunities

The implementation of CIHR’s new Open Suite of Programs and peer review processes includes a transition plan to gradually phase-out existing Open Knowledge Translation programs while phasing-in the two new funding schemes, the Project Scheme and Foundation Scheme. Therefore, the following funding opportunities will be launched for a last time:


Clinical Advisory Committee of the Rare Diseases: Models and Mechanisms Network

Official Announcement of the Results of the First Call of JPIAMR

Photo: Dr. John Hepburn, Dr. Charles Thompson, Dr. Marc Ouellette, Dr. Horatio Bach, PS McLeod, Dr. Raymond Andersen, Dr. Natalie Strynadka, Dr. Julian Davies

On April 13th at the University of British Columbia in the presence of Cathy McLeod, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health, and Dr. Marc Ouellette, Scientific Director of III, the results of the first transnational call “InnovaResistance: Innovative approaches to address antibacterial resistance” were  officially announced. The Government of Canada is investing $4 million to support international researcher teams including members from the Universities of British Columbia, McMaster and Laval. These Canadian researchers will work with international partners on six projects that focus on identifying new targets for antimicrobial drug development, new approaches to treating drug-resistant bacterial infections, and methods for preserving the effectiveness of existing antibiotics.

The 2013 Canadian Integrated Program for Antimicrobial Resistance Surveillance(CIPARS) Annual Report Chapters 1 and 2

The 2013 Canadian Integrated  Program for Antimicrobial Resistance  Surveillance (CIPARS) Annual Report Chapters 1 and 2 are now available.

  • Chapter 1 Design and Methods: This chapter describes the methods used for the collection, analysis and interpretation of both antimicrobial resistance and antimicrobial use data.
  • Chapter 2 Antimicrobial Resistance: This chapter presents all antimicrobial resistance data from human, animal and food isolates.

As always, the CIPARS team welcomes any comments or questions you may have about these publications. You can contact the CIPARS team

Scientific Meetings of Interest

International AIDS Society - 8th Conference on HIV Pathogenesis, Treatment and Prevention, July 19 to 22, 2015, Vancouver, BC.

2015 Towards an HIV Cure Symposium. July 18 & 19, 2015. Vancouver, BC.

Wise Practices V: Aboriginal Community-based HIV/AIDS Research Gathering, July 13-18, 2015, Vancouver, BC.

The 2nd International HIV/Viral Hepatitis Co-Infection Meeting, July 17-18, 2015, Vancouver, BC.

7th International Workshop on HIV Pediatrics, July 17-18, 2015, Vancouver, BC.

Challenges and Opportunities in Rural HIV Health, July 18, 2015, Vancouver, BC.

2015 Banff/CST Joint Scientific Meeting, October 5-10, 2015, Vancouver, BC,

Sparking Population Health Solutions – Research for a Healthier Future - An International Summit, April 25-28, 2016, Ottawa, ON.

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