The Nick Anthonisen Award of Excellence was created in 2015 thanks to a very generous sponsorship from Astra Zeneca.
This is one of five awards that Astra Zeneca funds across Western Canada with the goal of creating a network among Respirologists in Western Canada.
The award consists of a plaque as well as a one thousand dollar monetary award to be used towards an academic pursuit of the recipient.
Dr. M. Ainslie, Dr. N. Porhownik
Each year a member of the adult respiratory division who contributes significantly to the academic mission of the division is selected by the selection committee. This year the selection committee has chosen a member who contributes to the adult respiratory division’s educational mandate and is the current Program Director – Dr. Nancy Porhownik.
Dr. Porhownik has a busy clinical load with areas of expertise in sleep medicine, cystic fibrosis, and lung transplant. She is currently the Medical Director of the Lung Transplant Program, and under her guidance our program has become affiliated with the Edmonton Transplant program. This affiliation has resulted in a significant increase in lung transplant recipients in Manitoba. She is the current Program Director and is currently overseeing and guiding the program towards implementation of CBD – which will be the biggest change in post grad education since the introduction of CANmeds. Thanks to Nancy’s leadership the program will be able to smoothly introduce CBD.
Nancy Porhownik works tirelessly for her trainees and for the program and is a role model not only with respect to clinical care, but also to her work/ life balance.
Please join us in congratulating Nancy Porhownik on being this year’s recipient of the Nick Anthonisen Award of Excellence.
We are delighted to announce that the Section of Cardiology’s application for AFC (Area of Focused Competency) for accreditation for the Interventional Cardiology fellowship has been successful and has been approved and accredited by the RCPSC. This will help the Section of Cardiology attract strong future candidates and validates the strength of the training program.
Clinical Fellowships allow trainees to obtain further skills and knowledge in various subspecialties. Traditionally there has been no accreditation for this training. In recent years, the Royal College started the AFC (area of focused competency) diploma program to allow training programs in recognized disciplines to become accredited and allow trainees to obtain Royal College diplomas.
We would also like to emphasize that this is the first accredited and approved AFC program in the PGME department at the Max Rady College of Medicine at the University of Manitoba!
Congratulations are extended to Dr. Basem Elbarouni, Program Director for Interventional Cardiology, who was the lead for the AFC submission.
Project Title: “Innate Defence Regulator (IDR) peptides: Regulatory Mechanisms in the Control of Asthma”
Term: 5 years Approved total funding amount: $661,725.
Principal Investigator (PI):
Neeloffer Mookherjee PhD, Section of Proteomics & Systems Biology
Abstract: Asthma is the most common chronic respiratory disease, characterized by inflammation in the lungs and narrowing of the airways, which makes it difficult to breathe. Nearly 3 million Canadians suffer from asthma. The direct and indirect cost related to asthma in Canada is around $2.2 billion annually. Nearly 10% of patients do not respond to available steroid therapies and have severe uncontrolled asthma. These patients represent the major burden of asthma and associated healthcare costs. Moreover, commonly used steroid therapies can increase the risk of lung infections, which results in worsening of asthma. Therefore, there is an urgent need to develop new therapies that can control asthma, without compromising a patient’s ability to resolve infections. Dr. Mookherjee’s study focuses on new molecules known as innate defence regulator (IDR) peptides, which are designed from natural molecules that play a critical role in the immune response. IDR peptides can control both inflammation and infection in the lung, with the potential to overcome side effects associated with current therapies. We have shown that IDR peptides improve breathing capacity in an animal model of asthma, and can control cellular processes linked to steroid unresponsiveness. This project is aimed at the development of IDR peptides as a new therapy for asthma. This project will identify the changes that occur in lung cells after they are treated with IDR peptides. We will also study the biological effects of IDR peptides in the control of lung inflammation and fibrosis, in a mouse model of asthma. The results from these studies will allow us to identify new drug targets with the potential to alleviate unresponsiveness to steroid therapies, a condition for which there is currently no effective treatment. This project will directly support the development of a new IDR peptide-based therapy for asthma, which will have the added benefit of countering steroid-refractory asthma and controlling lung infections
Congratulations Dr. Mookerjee!