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2012 NHRC Conference

Engaging Local Researchers and Students in Topics Relating to the People and Communities in Northern Ontario

Earlier this month, the Northern Ontario School of Medicine (NOSM) hosted concurrent research conferences in Thunder Bay at Lakehead University. NOSM’s seventh annual Northern Health Research Conference (NHRC) and the 7th Meeting of the Canadian Oxidative Stress Consortium (COSC) attracted over 150 delegates from across the country and around the world.

“The Northern Ontario School of Medicine was delighted to host the Northern Health Research Conference and the Canadian Oxidative Stress Consortium meeting concurrently in Thunder Bay this year,” said Dr. Greg Ross, NOSM Associate Dean, Research. “Innovative Education and Research for a Healthier North is the vision of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine. These conferences are one way the School can highlight the fantastic research projects underway across Northern Ontario and demonstrate the positive impact they are having on the health of those living in Northern communities.”

NHRC Conference Highlights
  • The keynote address was delivered by Dr. Sonia Anand, Professor of Medicine and the Heart and Stroke Foundation Michael G. DeGroote Chair in Population Health Research at McMaster University. The title of her presentation was The Epidemic of Diabetes among Aboriginal People in Canada: Cause and Consequences. Dr. Anand’s thought-provoking presentation generated many questions from participants regarding rates of diabetes in the North.
  • A special session was organized for high school students from around the City of Thunder Bay. Hosted by NOSM’s Francophone Affairs Unit, the session provided youth with an opportunity to learn about health research, health-care careers, and the NOSM M.D. program from a researcher and NOSM staff member. Students also sat in on four presentations from a registered nurse and researchers from Laurentian University in Sudbury.
  • Conference participants had the opportunity to hear presentations on a variety of themes. During the two-day conference, 23 oral presentations and 37 posters were presented on topics including: opportunities and challenges for integrating sex and gender considerations into basic experimental biomedical research, tobacco use in emergency department patients, and an exploration of family influence on the acceptance of dietary recommendations for type 2 diabetes in Aboriginal communities.
COSC Conference Highlights
  • Dr. Enrique Cadenas, from the School of Pharmacy at the University of Southern California, provided the keynote address entitled The mitochondrial energy-redox axis in brain aging and neurodegeneration.
  • With a particular emphasis on new researchers, trainees had an opportunity to present on a variety of oxidative stress topics. Awards were presented to trainees in the categories of best poster and best oral presentation.
  • Throughout the three-day conference, 42 oral presentations and 28 posters were presented on topics such as oxidative stress and heart failure, why fruits are rich in antioxidants, and oxidative stress and cancer pain.

The aim of the Canadian Oxidative Stress Consortium is to bring together today’s leading Canadian researchers from the vast field of oxidative stress. The COSC is the largest Canadian conference focusing on oxidative stress. Assembling scientists from this exciting field provides an opportunity for all to exchange novel ideas, provide insight into their current work, and initiate collaborations.

The Northern Health Research Conference demonstrates NOSM’s commitment to health care and education to the people of Northern Ontario and beyond, and continues to explore research activities within Northern Ontario arising from community-based activities. It will highlight projects underway from students, residents, and community-based researchers, and provides opportunities for collaboration and community networking.

The next Northern Health Research Conference will be held in North Bay in the spring of 2013.