UBC This Week 20-Feb-2014

Thursday, February 20, 2014


Recent UBC Media Releases

Feb 20 Scientists create powerful artificial muscle with fishing line
Feb 20 University to tackle gender-based violence, Aboriginal stereotypes
Feb 20 The race to save endangered languages
Feb 19 Study finds nothing so sweet as a voice like your own
Feb 19 Why Canada needs healthy prisons
Feb 14 Researchers discover how ALS spreads
Feb 14 South African healthcare workers face greater risk for TB, HIV

Upcoming Event Highlights

Feb 20-21 Health Beyond Bars: Towards Healthy Prisons in Canada
Feb 21 Scott Pilgrim vs. The World film screening
Feb 22 Walking Tour: False Creek – 45 Years of Planning Innovation
Feb 22 UBCRC All You Can Eat Taiwanese Nightmarket
Feb 23 FestEVOLVE 2014
Feb 24-28 Freedom to Read Week at UBC Library
Feb 24 Positive Space workshop
Feb 24 UBC Sustainability Fair
Feb 24 Is There a Microscopic Physical Reality?
Feb 25 Ice Skate with Jump Start
Feb 25 Intercultural Language Studies: Looking Back, Looking Forward
Feb 26 Turning Science into Policy
Feb 26 SCARP lecture presents Anne McMullin: Real estate development
Feb 27 Videomatica film screening: Videodrome
Feb 27 Testing the effectiveness of the Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative on neonatal wards for increasing exclusive breastfeeding and reducing preterm infant mortality morbidity in Brazil
Mar 1 Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis
Find out what else is happening at UBC this week. For sports events, visit the UBC Athletics site at http://www.gothunderbirds.ca/calendar.aspx.

UBC People

UBC People

UBC mourns the passing of Erich Vogt

Erich Vogt, the UBC professor and nuclear physicist who helped found TRIUMF, Canada’s national nuclear and particle physics lab and Science World B.C., has passed away at the age of 84.

Vogt became a professor at UBC in 1965 and was one of the prime movers behind the TRIUMF project, Canada’s National Meson Sciences Research Facility located on the University’s Vancouver campus. From 1975 until 1981, he served as Vice President, Faculty and Student Affairs at UBC. He was the recipient of the Order of Canada, the Order of British Columbia, and was a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. He continued to teach first-year physics until his 80th birthday in 2009, and over 45 years, taught more than 5,000 students.

Vogt had two daughters and three sons, all of them UBC graduates, and 16 grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his wife of 54 years, Barbara, in 2006.

Visit the TRIUMF site for more details and plans for a memorial service.

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Forestry professors recognized by International Union of Forest Research Organizations

Three members of the UBC Faculty of Forestry will be honoured with Scientific Achievement Awards from the International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO) in recognition of their achievements in forest science. Sally Aitken is being recognized for her achievements in the field of forest conservation genetics. Richard Hamelin is being recognized for his work in the field of forestry pathology and Robert Kozak is being recognized for his work on forest products and sustainable and ethical forestry. For more information, click here.

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A new pathway for stopping Huntington disease

A molecule that “mops up” the toxic by-products of oxidative stress might be the key to blocking the effects of Huntington disease. The molecule, HACE1, was first identified as a protective protein against childhood cancers by Poul Sorensen, a professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. He and his collaborators at UBC have shown that it performs the same function in protecting brain cells. For more information, click here.

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Genetic discovery helps newborns beat a life-threatening condition

A UBC researcher has uncovered a genetic cause of excess ammonia in the blood of newborns, increasing the chances that children can be treated before suffering permanent brain damage. Hyperammonemia, a medical emergency affecting one in 10,000 infants, results from the body’s inability to detoxify by-products of converting proteins into energy. Clara van Karnebeek, a clinical assistant professor in the Division of Biochemical Diseases in the Department of Pediatrics, collaborated with colleagues to perform genomics studies with four children with hyperammonemia in B.C., the U.K. and Australia. For more information, click here.

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A more authentic cancer model

Researchers at the Vancouver Prostate Centre (VPC) have successfully grown early-stage human prostate cancers in mice, providing unprecedented levels of accuracy in seeing how patient-specific prostate tumors respond to drug therapies or develop drug resistance. Yuzhuo Wang, associate professor in the Department of Urologic Sciences and senior scientist at the VPC and B.C. Cancer Agency, is the first researcher in the world to successfully grow such tissue in animal hosts. Prior to this discovery, prostate cancer researchers were limited to a handful of prostate cancer cell lines grown in an incubator in a plastic dish, completely disconnected from their normal context of being within a patient’s body. For more information, click here.

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Nursing professor leads new learning tool on hepatitis C

Go For Care: Hepatitis C Knowledge Series was developed by the B.C. Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) and released this month as an interactive module that provides basic information about hepatitis C. Dr. Gail Butt, clinical lead, hepatitis at the BCCDC, and clinical assistant professor at UBC Nursing, says that research shows that resources like the Knowledge Series fills a need: “Our interviews with patients and healthcare providers uncovered a need for a resource like this – a one-stop source of basic information that’s easy to use.” For more information, click here.

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UBC helps expand diabetes clinical trial network

Two diabetes researchers are helping to launch the western expansion of the JDRF Canadian Clinical Trial Network. Professor Timothy Kieffer in the Department of Cellular and Physiological Sciences and Professor Rusung Tan in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine are two of the three scientists to share $3 million in funding provided by JDRF Canada to accelerate the translation of research into new treatments for diabetes. For more information, click here.

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Materials Engineering prof invited to the tabling of Budget 2014

Anoush Poursartip, director of UBC’s Composites Research Network, was invited by Prime Minister Stephen Harper to the tabling of Budget 2014 in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill on February 11, 2014. Poursartip is an internationally recognized leader in composite materials. Click here for more info.

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Forestry prof awarded silviculture prize

Forestry professor Stephen Mitchell has been awarded the 2013 Percy Stubbs, John Bolton King and Edward Garfitt Prize for Silviculture (The Silvicultural Prize). He receives this award in recognition of his paper titled “Wind as a natural disturbance agent in forests: a synthesis” published in Forestry. For more information, click here.

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Film festival sweep for PhD student

Whispers of Life, a short film produced by PhD student Joshua M. Ferguson, has been recognized with a Best Short Film Audience Award at the Reelout Queer Film + Video Festival. The film has received four major festival awards and has been selected to screen at 15 film festivals around the world.

A student at UBC’s Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice, Ferguson says, “The short film works as an artistic intervention to challenge the societal taboo of suicide, the pervasive and damaging effects of anti-gay bullying and the fact that these issues are not discussed openly.”

Ferguson will be featured in an upcoming issue of Daily Xtra. Click here for more information.

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Copyright and Course Reserves drop-in clinics

The Library, the Centre for Teaching and Learning Technology (CTLT) and UBC Bookstore are offering weekly drop-in sessions for faculty and instructors to learn more about copyright and course reserves. The sessions are offered every Wednesday from 1 to 3 p.m. in the CTLT Resource Room in the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre. For more information, click here.

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The Lost Canadians event

What does it mean to be Canadian? Don Chapman discusses recent legislation changes which will affect Canadians for generations to come. Chapman will provide background, talk about present-day discrimination and discuss how citizens can become stateless.

Date:  Feb. 27
Time:  12 to 2 p.m.
Place: Dodson Room (301), Irving K. Barber Learning Centre
Info: click here

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Calligraphy lecture and demonstration with Kataoka Shikō

The Consulate General of Japan in Vancouver, Keifūkai Vancouver and UBC Asian Library are hosting an evening with renowned calligrapher Kataoka Shikō (片岡紫江). Shikō will provide a lecture and demonstration in Japanese, with English translation given by Professor Emerita Sonja Arntzen from the University of Toronto.

Date:  Feb. 24
Time:  6:30 p.m.
Place: UBC Asian Centre Auditorium (1871 West Mall)
Info: click here

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