CBC: How retirement communities are using music to battle loneliness
May 23, 2018Some say music brings people together. A few retirement communities in Ottawa are counting on it, and hope it will help fight isolation and loneliness, too. Researchers at Carleton University brought a musical group dubbed the Java music club to three retirement communities in the city on a weekly basis, to see if a structured peer-support music program would help seniors feel more connected. "Lots of social activities in residential care homes, they might be a lot of fun," Renate Ysseldyk, a Carleton professor who heads the study, told CBC Radio's Ottawa Morning. Read the full article here.
CBC: Waterloo researchers use tech tank top to detect heart problems
May 23, 2018A team of University of Waterloo researchers have started using wearable technology to flag whether a person might be experiencing the onset of a respiratory or cardiovascular disease. The lead investigator, Thomas Beltrame, and his team are looking at chronic illnesses that have symptoms of declining aerobic fitness. The team used sensors embedded in shirts that could collect data from a person as they moved about their day, and interpreted the data using artificial intelligence software. The sensors measured heart rate, breathing rate and breathing volume, activity and sleep. Read the full article here.
WesternU: Research team develops clinically-validated 3D printed stethoscope
April 10, 2018A team of researchers have developed an open-source, clinically validated template for a 3D printed stethoscope for use in areas of the world with limited access to medical supplies – places where a stethoscope could mean the difference between life and death. “As far as we know this is the first open-source medical device that has been clinically validated and is widely available,” said Dr. Tarek Loubani, associate professor at Western University’s Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry, associate scientist at Lawson Health Research Instituteand an emergency room physician at London Health Sciences Centre. Loubani spent time working as an ER physician in hospitals in Gaza during wartime when medical supplies were often scarce. “We wanted physicians and allied health care professionals to be able to have something that was high quality. This study found that the acoustic quality was the same in our stethoscope as in a premium brand stethoscope.” Read the full article here.
Toronto Star: McMaster researchers develop transparent patch to detect pathogens like E. coli in packaged foods
April 10, 2018Researchers at McMaster University have developed a transparent test patch for food packaging that detects the presence of potentially deadly bacteria like E. coli, with the aim of telling consumers and the grocery industry whether a product is safe to eat. Dubbed “Sentinel Wrap,” the patch triggers a molecular signal that a disease-causing agent has contaminated products like meat, bottled water or milk. “Right now, if you want to know if there’s any contamination in a food sample, you need to bring it into a lab ... and it takes at least a day or two to find out if there’s any pathogen present in that food sample,” said mechanical-biomedical engineer Tohid Didar, one of the product’s developers. Read the full article here.
Budget2018: New federal investments in Canadian science and research will create a better future
February 27, 2018Ontario’s universities welcome the new federal investments in Canadian science and scholarship announced by Finance Minister Bill Morneau in today’s budget, because investing in university research is an investment in a better future. University research leads to the innovations that boost Canadians’ health and quality of life, spurs business activity, boosts jobs, and creates a better future for students, communities and the province. The funding announced today is recognition by the government of Canada that university research is a vital ingredient in the country’s long-term wealth and prosperity. See Ontario's Universities full statement on Budget 2018 here.
EurekAlert!: University of Guelph Study uncovers new insights into the cause of cell death in Parkinson’s
February 27, 2018A University of Guelph researcher has discovered one of the factors behind nerve cell death in Parkinson's disease, unlocking the potential for treatment to slow the progression of this fatal neurodegenerative disorder. Prof. Scott Ryan has found that cardiolipin, a molecule inside nerve cells, helps ensure that a protein called alpha-synuclein folds properly. Misfolding of this protein leads to protein deposits that are the hallmark of Parkinson's disease. These deposits are toxic to nerve cells that control voluntary movement. When too many of these deposits accumulate, nerve cells die. Read the full article here.