Two University of Manitoba-led studies benefited from $2 million in funding from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research’s (CIHR) Canadian Microbiome Initiative 2 to study the microbiome in cervical cancer as well as the microbial causes of asthma. A total of seven research investigative teams will receive funding to pursue a better understanding of the microbiome in human health and disease.
First, cervical cancers, one of the most common cancers among women worldwide, is behind 250,000 deaths annually. Co-lead Dr. Adam Burgener, associate professor of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive sciences, will capitalize on the funds for a five-year project helping the study of the vaginal microbiome in cervical cancer to better understand the role in the disease.
Dr. Burgener notes that “The HPV vaccine is the most effective prevention tool we have against cervical cancer. But for those with advanced disease, where treatment options are more limited, finding new therapeutic interventions that could help existing treatments would be very helpful. We are very excited and grateful for the support from CIHR to help with this effort.”
Another team involving CHILD Cohort Study researchers, also received funding for a five-year initiative offering scientists the opportunity to investigate the trillions of microorganisms residing outside the human body and uncovering the role they play in causing asthma.
The co-lead, Dr. Meghan Azad, Canada Research Chair in Developmental Origins of Chronic Disease, University of Manitoba and a research scientist at the Children’s Hospital Research Institute of Manitoba reported on the severity of the asthma situation noting “Asthma affects one in 10 children and it is the most common reason why children miss school or end up in the hospital.” Dr. Azad emphasized the delight with receiving the grant funding which will go toward helping “us to improve the lives of Canadian children.”
Dr. Adam Burgener, associate professor of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive sciences
Dr. Meghan Azad, Canada Research Chair in Developmental Origins of Chronic Disease, University of Manitoba, research scientist at the Children’s Hospital Research Institute of Manitoba
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