UBC spin-off company ready to launch phone-based pulse oximeter
UBC spin-off company Lionsgate Technologies Inc. is preparing to launch a software application, developed by two UBC professors, that transforms smartphones, tablets and laptops into mobile medical diagnostic tools capable of real-time vital signs monitoring.
“Pairing medical diagnostics with mobile phones will greatly advance the assessment, diagnosis and treatment of critical diseases in developing countries,” said Mark Ansermino, associate professor at UBC’s Department of Anesthesiology, Pharmacology and Therapeutics and anesthesiologist at B.C. Children’s Hospital, whose team developed the technology.
Ansermino worked with Guy Dumont, professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and their team, Electrical and Computer Engineering in Medicine (ECEM), to develop Vital Signs DSP.
The technology, which includes applications for pulse oximetry, temperature and blood pressure monitoring, requires no external signal processors, microcontrollers, power sources or displays. Users just download a proprietary app that allows their mobile device to drive a low-cost standard medical sensor.
For more information, visit http://med.ubc.ca/ubc-spin-off-company-ready-to-launch-phone-based-pulse-oximeter/.
Electrical and Computer Engineering student develops life-saving smartphone app
Mitacs Globalink student Vicky Liu is working with Professor Victor C.M. Leung of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering to develop a smartphone application that will display a user’s vital signs onscreen after assessing his or her health via wireless bluetooth sensors placed on the body.
Liu is working towards a bachelor’s degree in computing science at the Beijing Institute of Technology. She chose the Globalink program because it allowed her to network globally during her exchange. “This has been a very precious opportunity for me,” she said, “and I greatly encourage other international students to consider doing internships with Mitacs Globalink.”
For more information, visit http://www.ece.ubc.ca/news/201210/student-develops-life-saving-smartphone-app.
UBC Law hosts exhibition on Mackenzie Valley Pipeline Inquiry
UBC Law is hosting an exhibition that tells the story of the Mackenzie Valley Pipeline Inquiry. The inquiry, held in the Northwest Territories in the early ‘70s, has been recognized as an important time in B.C.’s history for the voice it gave to the Aboriginal people whose traditional territory would have been affected by the pipeline.
In 1974, UBC graduate, Justice Thomas R. Berger of the Supreme Court of B.C., was appointed by the federal government to hold hearings into a proposed natural gas pipeline from the Beaufort Sea, down the Mackenzie Valley, to U.S. markets. Berger’s task was not to rule for or against a pipeline, but to recommend conditions that would be placed on construction. In addition to the formal hearings in Yellowknife, the inquiry held community hearings in more than 30 villages along the pipeline path. The community hearings were organized by UBC law professor Michael Jackson and ignited the interest of Canadians, eroding public confidence in the pipeline application.
This inquiry exhibition marks the 35th anniversary of Berger’s final report. Hanging above the exhibition are beaver stretchers with twenty historical images shot by Jackson during the community hearings. On the walls are life-sized portraits of key organizers photographed by Linda MacCannell.
Date: Oct. 29 – Nov. 3
Place: Franklin Lew Forum, Allard Hall, 1822 East Mall
Info: Free admission and open to the public. http://www.law.ubc.ca/news/2012/oct/10_31_12_display.html
Parkinson Society Canada gives grants to four faculty scientists
Parkinson Society Canada has awarded research grants to two faculty members and two post-doctoral fellows in the Faculty of Medicine.
Doris Doudet, professor in the Division of Neurology, received $45,000 to develop a radioactive tracer to allow imaging scans of the brain. Imaging will help pinpoint changes in the system in the brain that produces noradrenaline, an important chemical implicated early in Parkinson’s disease.
Thibault Mayor, assistant professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, received $45,000 to investigate a protein called UCHL1, to see if it can prevent cell death by triggering one of the two recycling systems within cells to clear out damaged proteins if the other system fails.
Andre Felicio, a post-doctoral fellow in the Pacific Parkinson’s Research Centre, received $25,000 to investigate whether the chemical serotonin plays a role in dyskinesia, the uncontrolled movements that can be a side-effect of dopamine-replacement therapy.
Marjorie Gonzalez, a post-doctoral fellow in the Medical Physics program of the Department of Physics and Astronomy (Faculty of Science) will receive $80,000 over two years to use MRI and PET to learn why compulsive behaviours occur in up to 15 per cent of Parkinson’s patients.
For more information, visit http://med.ubc.ca/parkinson-society-canada-gives-grants-to-four-faculty-scientists/.
Faculty member to receive U of S Alumni Achievement Award
Dr. Bruce McManus has been named a 2012 recipient of a Alumni Achievement Award by the University of Saskatchewan (U of S) Alumni Association for his contributions to cardiovascular research and treatment. In 1967, McManus received a Bachelor of Arts in Physical Education from the U of S, graduating top of his class. He was also the top graduate and surgery trainee in 1977 when he earned his medical degree from the U of S.
Following 11 years as a faculty member at the University of Nebraska, McManus joined the Faculty of Medicine at UBC as department head of pathology and laboratory medicine. He serves as director of the UBC James Hogg Research Centre and the NCE CERC Centre of Excellence for Prevention of Organ Failure.
The U of S Alumni Association will honour McManus at its annual Honouring Our Alumni reception on Nov. 2 in Saskatoon. For more information, visit alumni.usask.ca/awards.
Civil Engineering professors recognized
UBC Civil Engineering professor Jonathan Fannin received the 2012 Geosynthetics Division Award from the Canadian Geotechnical Society (CGS) for his contribution to the application of geosynthetics in civil, geotechnical and geoenvironmental engineering in Canada and internationally. Fannin is an expert in state-of-the-art geotechnical engineering as it relates to landslide risk management, designing with geosynthetics and seepage-induced erosion in earth dams. For more information, visit http://ow.ly/eV9jm.
The Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of B.C. has awarded Civil Engineering professor Robert Millar with its award for Teaching Excellence in Engineering and Geoscience Education—the highest teaching award for engineering educators in British Columbia.
Millar is an engaging educator who strives to continually improve his courses. He is known for fostering a comfortable learning environment that stimulates interaction. For more info: http://ow.ly/eV8Rr.
Learning Centre construction under way
Construction of UBC Library’s multi-service desk on the third floor of the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre began on Oct. 30. The project, part of a number of changes underway at UBC Library, is scheduled for completion by mid-January 2013. Updates are available on the Learning Centre’s website (which includes visual representations of the architectural design), and on Twitter using #ikblcrenovation. For further information, contact Gordon Yusko, the Learning Centre’s Assistant Director.
Chemical and Biological Engineering graduate student wins poster award
Mehr Negar Mirvakili, supervised by Prof. Peter Englezos and Prof. Sawas Hatzikiriakos, won first place in the graduate student poster competition during the 62nd Canadian Chemical Engineering Conference held in Vancouver in October 2012. The title of the poster was “Superhydrophobic fiber network loaded with functionalized fillers.”
Green College and the Global Civic Society present Sam Sullivan’s Public Salon: Inspiring Ideas
Former Vancouver mayor Sam Sullivan hosts a season of salons every year featuring short presentations by Vancouver’s leaders and thinkers. Each speaker will talk for seven minutes on a subject they are passionate about.
• Mark Vessey, Principal, Green College
• Peg Fong, Toronto Star
• Wayne Hartrick, Men’s Health
• Marjan Jamsaz, Silent Scream for Iran
• Steven Pratt, Director CBC Radio 3
• Jim Crescenzo and Walter Mustapich, Boys Club Network
• Roger Shick, Chronic Pain Physician
• Alan Twigg, B.C. Bookworld
Date: Nov. 7
Time: 7:30 – 9 p.m.
Place: The Vancouver Playhouse Theatre, 600 Hamilton Street
Info: Limited complimentary tickets to the UBC community – contact email@example.com Regular tickets: $16 online or $20 at the door. Online: Tickets Tonight or 604-684-2787.
Civil Engineering Talk: Design and Construction Coordination with Building Information Modeling
Associate Professor Sheryl Staub-French, Department of Civil Engineering, will give a seminar on research that was conducted in collaboration with computer scientists to study Building Information Modeling (BIM) implementation on several building projects at UBC.
Date: Nov. 6
Time: 1:30 – 2:30 p.m.
Place: Kaiser 2020/2030
Info: Click here
Asia Pacific Memo: Asia in the World; Buddhist Monks and Militant Violence in Laos; Tokdo/Takeshima Island Dispute
Twice-weekly, Asia Pacific Memo publishes short text memos or video interviews on current issues in Asia and across the Pacific: http://www.asiapacificmemo.ca/
Most recent memos:
• Asia in the World – Featuring Yves Tiberghien at the Institute of Asian Research, UBC.
• Buddhist Monks and Militant Violence in Laos, by Ian G. Bard, University of Wisconsin-Madison.
• Tokdo/Takeshima Island Dispute: A Call for Educators to Act towards Mutual Understanding, by Hee-Ryong Kang, Chonbuk University and Keita Takayama, University of New England