Evaluating HIV Vertical Transmission Patterns Stratified by Infant Feeding Practices and Referral Location at Two Ugandan Health Centres
Marissa Nahirney, BHSc

Feb. 4, 2021, 9:45 am - 10:00 am

Marissa Nahirney is a third-year medical student at the University of Alberta and graduated with a BHSc (Hons) in Health and Society from the University of Calgary in 2018. Her keen interest in maternal health led her to conduct several research projects and an honors thesis evaluating obstetrical and neonatal health outcomes and improvements in Canada and internationally. Marissa aimed to marry her interests in tropical medicine, equity and maternal health through participation in a field school in rural Tanzania, where she studied gendered perspectives on water and sanitation issues. Marissa then went on to intern in Mbarara, Uganda through the Queen Elizabeth Golden Jubilee Scholarship, developing community-level initiatives to improve maternal health with Healthy Child Uganda, and garnering support from USAID and Welcome Trust. In 2019, Marissa was named an ASTMH Ben Kean Fellow, allowing her to return to Uganda and continue pursuing her research interests regarding infectious disease and global health.

Arts-Based HIV Stigma Intervention in Northern Uganda with School Children
Dr. Bonnie Fournier, PhD
Feb. 4, 2021, 10:00 am - 10:15 am

Dr. Bonnie Fournier is a registered nurse and an associate professor in the School of Nursing at Thompson Rivers University, Kamloops, British Columbia, Canada. Her career has spanned more than 20 years, and includes nursing in areas such as mental health, community health, and global health with a focus on addressing health inequities through policy approaches, community building, and community-based participatory research. Dr. Fournier has taught undergraduate and graduate nursing in Canada and the Middle East. As a University of Alberta Alumni, she was recognized for outstanding achievements early in her career with the Horizon Award. Her research is focused on population health interventions utilizing arts-based methods (photovoice, theatre, art, storytelling, dance) to advance health equity for children and youth whose lives are affected by stigma, poverty, and geography. She is a principal investigator on several Tri-Agency grants including a study to reduce HIV stigma in Ugandan school children using local traditional knowledge and arts-based methods.

Perspectives on Efforts Made to Improve Glaucoma Care in Nairobi, Kenya
Kahir A. Rahemtulla, BSc., MSc
Feb. 4, 2021, 11:00 am - 11:15 am

Kahir Rahemtulla is currently a third-year medical student at the University of Alberta. He has previously completed a B.A.Sc. in Chemical Engineering at Queen’s University and a M.Sc. in Medicine and Biomedical Engineering at the University of Alberta. Before pivoting towards a career in medicine, Kahir completed internships at Stantec and Imperial Oil with a focus in Oil and Gas. Professionally, his interests lie in emerging health technologies, clinical research, and global health.

Maternal Sunlight Exposure During Pregnancy and Offspring Outcomes -- A Scoping Review
Peter Anto Johnson, BSc, MSc
Feb. 4, 2021, 11:15 am - 11:30 am

Peter Anto Johnson, MSc. is a researcher at the Antarctic Institute of Canada and a medical student at the University of Alberta. He holds an MSc in Pediatrics and BSc (Hons) in Physiology from the University of Alberta and is the president of the Canadian Coalition of Global Health Research - Students and Young Professionals Network (CCGHR-SYPN) University of Alberta Chapter. He has previously been recognized for his research achievements having been named one of the Alberta Council of Global Cooperation's Top 30 Under 30 in 2019.

Poster:  Rigorizing COVID-19 Blind-Spotting for Competent Political Leadership and Public Health Cognizance
John Christy Johnson, MSc
Feb. 4, 2021, 11:30 am

John Christy Johnston is a 3rd year M.D/M.Sc. Biomedical Engineering Candidate at the University of Alberta. He works as a graduate researcher at the Rehabilitation Robotics Lab examining wheelchair biomechanics in virtual reality. He writes for the Antarctic Institute of Canada and is co-president of the Canadian Coalition of Global Health Research: Alberta Chapter.

Examining Malaria Preventive Behaviours Among Francophone African Immigrants Living in the Edmonton Region
Taylor Hanna
Feb. 5, 2021, 9:45 am - 10:00 am

Taylor Hanna is a 4th year undergraduate student pursuing a bilingual Bachelor of Sciences at the University of Alberta (Campus Saint-Jean). Her career in research has spanned 4 years, undertaking multiple projects in a diverse range of fields. Since 2018, she has been leading a cross-sectional study investigating the knowledge, attitudes, and practices regarding malaria. This project is focusing on Francophone immigrants residing in the Edmonton Metropolitan Region who have originated from Sub-Saharan Africa, an endemic region with one of the highest rates of malaria cases and deaths in the world. She has also completed multiple projects through the University of Alberta Cell Biology Department investigating genetic and proteomic components of Peroxisomal Biogenesis Disorders, a spectrum of lipid metabolism disorders in the field of developmental biology. Finally, she has completed a literary review investigating the cellular mechanisms of therapeutic resistance of small cell lung cancer, translating the findings into French, and structuring them into a research paper.  Having won multiple research awards and grants, her passion for research and medicine has driven her goal to one day become an oncologist specializing in molecular genetics.   

ARF Regulatory System Reduction in Giardia Intestinalis Pre-Dates the Transition to Parasitism in the Lineage Fornicata
Shweta Pipaliya, BSc, MSc
Feb. 5, 2021, 10:00 am -10:15 am

Shweta Pipaliya is a 4th-year Ph.D. Candidate in the Department of Medicine - Division of Infectious Diseases. Her supervisors are Prof. Joel Dacks (Div. Infectious Diseases, University of Alberta), Dr. Matthew Croxen (Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, University of Alberta), and Dr. Carmen Faso (Institute for Cell Biology, University of Bern).  The goal of her Ph.D. thesis is to understand the evolution and mechanisms of critical cargo transport protein machinery in the enteric microbial parasite, Giardia intestinalis which is responsible for the diarrheal disease Giardiasis (colloquially also known as Beaver Fever). The disease occurs globally, including in Canada, but is especially prevalent and causes high-burden in resource-poor countries. 

She is interested in specifically studying the cargo transport machinery in Giardia because it plays crucial roles in this pathogen to transition between various stages of its lifecycle, evade host immune responses, and establish infection in humans and animals. To comprehensively address questions, she is using a systems approach by combining evolutionary bioinformatics, population genomics, and molecular parasitology methods. This interdisciplinary work is being performed with at least three different research groups through international (the University of Zurich and the University of Bern, Switzerland) and cross-institutional (Dalhousie University, Nova Scotia) collaborations. 

Investigation of Antibody-Mediated Immune Mechanisms in Pregnancy-Associated Malaria
Madeleine Wiebe, BSc, MSc
Feb. 5, 2021, 11:00 am - 11:15 am

Madeleine Wiebe graduated from Concordia University of Edmonton in 2018 with a Bachelor of Science with high distinction. She then began her Master's Degree at the University of Alberta in Stephanie Yanow's lab, focusing on the immune response to pregnancy-associated malaria. Madeleine was awarded funding from several agencies, including CIHR and the Li Ka Shing Institute of Virology. Madeleine is aiming to complete her degree in June 2021 and continue a career in the health sciences. 

Perinatal Iron Deficiency Alters Offspring Vitamin A Signaling and Nephrogenesis in a Sex Dependent Manner
Andrew Woodman, BSc, MSc
Feb. 5, 2021, 11:15 am - 11:30 am

Andrew Woodman is currently in his 6th year of a combined MD/PhD in Pharmacology under the supervision of Drs. Stephane Bourque and Ferrante Gragasin. His research, focused on how perinatal iron deficiency impacts cardiovascular development and function, is supported by a CIHR Vanier Scholarship and an Alberta Innovates Graduate Studentship.