FoMD in the News

A round-up of news stories featuring the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry

ROSS NEITZ - 26 October 2018

This is a round-up of relevant news and media stories involving the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry. We appreciate you relaying information which is relevant to faculty members in your respective areas.


Edmonton Journal: 'Underdog disorder': Kipnes chair to boost lymphatic research at U of A

Dianne Kipnes

A $7-million donation is poised to make the U of A a leader in lymphatic disorder research. The money will establish the Dianne and Irving Kipnes Chair in Lymphatic Disorders, the first of its kind in Canada. Coverage also appears on Global News, CTV News (found at 10:06 in the video) and


Portsmouth Daily Times: Cleanliness causing obesity?

Researchers from the U of A found an association between household use of disinfectants and childhood obesity. Coverage also appears on and the John Tesh Radio Show.

A Controversial Virus Study Reveals a Critical Flaw in How Science Is Done

After U of A researchers resurrected a long-dead pox, some critics argue that it's too easy for scientists to make decisions of global consequence. Related coverage also appears in Futurism and RT.

Maclean's: Does cannabis affect your memory?

Scot Purdon, a clinical professor of psychiatry at the U of A, is nearing the end of a study observing 120 frequent cannabis users and testing for learning memory, attention, fine motor function and executive skills through a variety of cognitive tests. Based on preliminary data analysis, he says the effects on heavy users tend to dissipate within 24 hours of last use. But there is no solid data showing what happens after a week, a month or beyond to those users or others. Related coverage also appears in Daily Mail (UK).

Global News: Vitamin D supplements aren't helping your bones: study

Story mentions a 2016 U of A study that concluded vitamin D supplements, in general, did not provide the health benefits most of us believed.

The Substance: Why delaying pregnancy beyond 35 years increases heart health risks for moms, sons

Delaying pregnancy may increase the risk of cardiovascular disease in both women and their children, with boys at higher risk of disease, according to a new study from the U of A. Coverage also appears in The Siver Times and The Koz Post.

Her Family: Eating one snack during pregnancy linked with baby's learning ability

"We found that one of the biggest predictors of cognitive development was how much fruit moms consumed during pregnancy," said study author Piush Mandhane, an associate professor of pediatrics at the U of A.

CBC Radio Active: Could it be the magic bullet that helps solve the Alzheimer's riddle?

Jack Jhamandas, a professor of neurology at the U of A, speaks on his work with a compound that might help prevent Alzheimer's disease and even repair damage already done.

Vue Weekly: U of A study Outlines Problematic Prescriptions in Canada's Elderly Population

Seniors, more than other Canadians, turn to benzodiazepine drugs to get a good night's rest-a small, relatively quiet drug problem in the country that has University of Alberta researchers concerned. According to Jean Triscott, director of the U of A's Division of Care of the Elderly, benzodiazepine use can result in delirium and confusion. This, in turn, can lead to physical injuries, including falls. There are also higher reported incidences of motor vehicle crashes.

CTV Edmonton: First-of-its-kind surgery in Edmonton may help man run again after knee injury

Edmonton surgeons tried something they had never done before: a shin bone, live cartilage and meniscus transplant. Nadr Jomha, a professor of orthopaedic surgery at the U of A, performed the surgery.


CBC News: Families affected by opioid crisis need more support, Alberta prof says

Hakique Virani, an assistant clinical professor of preventive medicine at the U of A, spoke at a drug policy conference in Edmonton to discuss treatment gaps for those with opioid addiction.

CTV News Edmonton: Cannabis and its health effects

Martin Davies, a professor of pharmacology at the U of A, comments on the lack of high quality studies on the effects of cannabis.

Global News: Expert at Alberta symposium concerned about cannabis' effects on memory, language, mood

Scot Purdon, a clinical professor of psychiatry at the U of A, does research on the behavioural effects of cannabis. He said he's "sitting on the fence" on the legalization of the drug. "I would like to see higher quality studies being done, more firm, compelling evidence one way or the other," Purdon said.

Wired: So, self-driving cars could make humans unhealthier than ever

A widespread shift to vehicles that drive themselves, some experts say, could weaken humanity's already slipping stance in a two-front war against pollution and sedentary behavior. Karen Lee, an associate professor of preventive medicine at the U of A, comments.

St. Albert Gazette: The grey bus gap

Bonnie Dobbs, a professor of family medicine with the U of A's Medically At-Risk Driver Centre, provides expert comment in a story about a seniors' transportation gap in St. Albert.

St. Albert Gazette: Cannabis remains mysterious among experts

Barry Finegan professor of anesthesiology and pain medicine at the U of A, said those who smoke tobacco are about six times more likely to smoke cannabis. Related coverage also appears in Rocky Mountain Outlook.

CBC News: DATS needs $2.25 million to improve bus service, Edmonton councillors told

As Edmonton's population grows and ages, so does the demand for regular and special transit service for people with limited mobility. Other cities have improved the efficiency of DATS by using ride scheduling software and apps, said Bonnie Dobbs, a professor in the Department of Family Medicine.

The Fifth Estate: Unbuckled: School Bus Safety

Professor of emergency medicine Louis Francescutti discusses a CBC investigation revealing major flaws in a landmark 1984 Transport Canada study that concluded seat belts in school buses were not necessary and may cause injuries.

Alberta Views: Should All Drugs Be Decriminalized?

Hakique Virani, an assistant clinical professor of preventive medicine, argues, "It's long past time to change course and decriminalize drug use."

CBC Radio Edmonton: How much THC does it take to get impaired?

Addictions specialist Krishna Balachandra, an assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at the U of A, discusses the high potency of cannabis products currently on the black market. No link.

StarMetro News: People with mental health-related disabilities are twice as likely to be victims of assault: StatsCan

People with mental health-related disabilities are more than twice as likely to be assaulted than those who aren't, according to recent Statistics Canada numbers. Assistant clinical professor of psychiatry Adam Abba-Aji is interviewed.

St. Albert Gazette: Legal weed means scientific inquiries

Cannabis has been seriously under-researched in the past 80 years because it has been illegal to use it, U of A professor of pediatrics Jason Dyck told a scientific gathering. Also speaking at the event was Martin Davies, a professor of pharmacology, in a CBC story.


680 CJOB Winnipeg: How neighbourhoods impact our health

Karen Lee, an associate professor of preventive medicine at the U of A, gives a radio interview about her work examining how where we live affects our health. Similar interviews were conducted across the Corus Radio Network.

Edmonton Sun: Hicks on Biz: Growing high-tech companies takes time

Story about the rise of high-tech industry in Edmonton mentions Nanostics, a startup that grew out of U of A cancer researcher John Lewis' less-invasive prostate cancer detection kit. Reports suggest sales of the kit, ClarityDXProstate, could reach sales of $100 million in five to seven years.

Markets Insider: Funding awarded to six research teams working to improve health outcomes and quality of life for people living with brain disorders

Jaynie Yang, a professor of biomedical engineering at the U of A, was awarded an Improving Health Outcomes and Quality of Life Team Grant, funded by the Canada Brain Research Fund with the financial support of Health Canada and institutional sponsors, for her research into perinatal stroke.

University Magazine: The best medical schools in Canada 2018

University Magazine ranks Canada's top medical schools.

Global News: Charitable makeover at Alberta Hospital a preview of changes for mental health care in Edmonton

A renovation to Alberta Hospital is just part of changing mental health services, including an ongoing strengthening of the educational relationship between Alberta Hospital caregivers and the U of A Department of Psychiatry.

Global News Edmonton: Cool Science: University of Alberta's Witchcraft & Wizardry event

Teacher Michael Ng and guest Wes Parlour discuss the U of A's Harry Potter-themed Witchcraft & Wizardry event and perform a science experiment.

Edmonton Journal: Education minister appoints group to draft school seclusion guidelines

A new eight-member working group will make recommendations to Alberta's education minister by December on how seclusion is used in schools. The group includes U of A associate professor of developmental pediatrics Keith Goulden.

Global News: University of Alberta invention may help to prevent heart attack deaths

An invention from the U of A may help to prevent heart attack deaths. Professor of oncology John Mackey and dean Neal Davies with the Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences are interviewed.