The WCVM research dollars are part of nearly $5.7 million in funding that was awarded to University of Saskatchewan (USask) researchers in support of 32 wide-ranging projects. The NSERC Discovery Grants provide up to five years of funding for ongoing and long-term projects.
“The diversity of projects awarded Discovery Grant funding this year is representative of USask’s impressive, diversified research atmosphere,” said USask Vice-President Research Baljit Singh. “Our scientists are on a constant quest to provide discovery the world needs, and this deeply appreciated investment from the federal government will fuel these efforts.
Here are brief summaries of the WCVM researchers’ projects:
Dr. Gurpreet Aulakh
Dr. Gurpreet Aulakh is an assistant professor in the WCVM’s Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences and the Fedoruk Chair in Imaging Science. With her latest study, she is striving to understand an ancient protein called ATP synthase complex V, its expression and how it affects lung inflammation in mice after they’re exposed to ozone.
By using computed tomography (CT), multiple image radiography and PET-CT imaging on the mice, Aulakh will better understand the effects of this protein and neutrophils (the first white blood cells to appear following a lung infection) on lung inflammation.
Aulakh will receive $152,500 from the NSERC Discovery Grant over five years. Her project also received an additional one-year supplement.
Dr. Diego Moya
Dr. Diego Moya is an assistant professor in the WCVM’s Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences. He will evaluate the use of beef cattle temperament as an on-farm indicator of disease susceptibility. The characterization of cattle behaviours (their aggressiveness or reaction to fear, for example) and its link to negative health and welfare outcomes will aid farmers when tailoring herd health programs to manage high-risk cattle accordingly, which will reduce antimicrobial drug use, illness and death.
Moya will receive $152,500 in funding over five years.
Dr. Matthew Loewen
Dr. Matthew Loewen is an associate professor in the WCVM’s Department of Veterinary Biomedical Sciences. He is working on a project to advance a comparative understanding of the molecular regulation of solute carriers and channels. Loewen will receive $210,000 over five years.
Click here to view the full USask news release.
Jessica Colby of Montmartre, Sask., is a fourth-year student in the University of Regina’s School of Journalism. She is working as a research communications intern at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (WCVM) for summer 2021.