Blood Disorders

Design and discovery of novel organ specific iron chelating system for the treatment of transfusional iron overload

Iron is essential for different physiological functions and biochemical activities in the body, but is extremely toxic in excess. Because humans don’t have an active mechanism to excrete excess iron, too much iron in the system can lead to iron overload. 

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2017
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Generation of a humanized mouse xenotransplant model of myelodysplastic syndrome

Myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) are diseases of the blood and bone marrow. MDS originate when a stem cell, from which all other blood cells originate, becomes mutated and then overgrows and crowds out other cells. This results in reduced numbers of red cells (anemia), white cells (leukopenia) and platelets (thrombocytopenia) circulating in the blood. As the disease progresses, bone marrow may completely fail to produce normal cells, and the myelodysplastic stem cell may develop into cancer, Acute myeloid leukemia (AML).

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2011
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The role of the Ahi-1 oncogene in the regulation of hematopoietic stem cell development, function, and leukemogenesis

Chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) is a cancer of the white blood cells. The disease starts when genetic changes in blood stem cells (hematopoietic stem cells, or HSCs) cause them to become malignant (leukemic stem cells) and grow uncontrollably. Normally, HSCs make all the white and red blood cells that function to protect our bodies from infections and to carry oxygen and nutrients to other cells in the body. In CML, leukemic stem cells crowd out all other cells in the bone marrow, leading to illness and eventually, if uncontrolled, death in the patient.

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2011
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Analysis of Integrin Function in Muscle Formation and Maintenance

Cells in multi-cellular organisms such as humans are arranged in highly complex three-dimensional structures. The cells attach to their environment through cell adhesion proteins, which create a type of living scaffolding for the body. Integrins are an important type of cell adhesion molecule that attaches cells to tissues to provide structure within the body (bone, tendon, etc). Cell adhesion has varied and critical roles during animal and human development.

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2008

Stem Cell Physiology

Researchers in the Stem Cell Physiology Research Unit, located at The Biomedical Research Centre at UBC, are studying the biology of bone marrow stem cells and the immune system. They are focusing on understanding the molecular mechanisms that control how bone-marrow stem cells self-renew and how they differentiate into and function as specific types of blood cells. Their long-term goal is to understand how defence, repair, and regeneration are regulated and how this knowledge can be exploited to benefit health and offer new treatments for disease.

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2004
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Centre for Blood Research and Laboratory for Molecular Biophysics

The Centre for Blood Research (CBR) applies contemporary methods of biotechnology to the study of blood and blood processing to enhance the Canadian blood system. This unit brings together the CBR and UBC’s Laboratory of Molecular Biophysics, a campus-wide resource for physically characterizing biological macromolecules (such as those that make up blood) through advanced instrument/technology research, development and support. With the clustering of clinical scientists, basic scientists and engineers in one space, this unit is uniquely positioned to create new, fundamental and practical knowledge in transfusion science.

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2003
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