Halifax Hosts the First CE2C Meeting
The 1st Canadian Environmental Exposures in Cancer (CE2C) Network Meeting was held in Halifax, Nova Scotia on October 3, 2019. The meeting was supported by grants from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the Beatrice Hunter Cancer Research Institute (BHCRI). The BHCRI is a key partner of CE2C and provided administrative support for the meeting. Dr. Graham Dellaire opened the meeting with an overview of the CE2C Network progress to date and introduced the goals of the meeting: a) to develop (and reinforce) collaborations between stakeholders, policy makers and researchers across the country to tackle the Canadian health problem of environmental exposures like radon and arsenic that raise the risk of cancer; and b) to develop a 2 year strategic plan to expand the resources and reach of the CE2C Network through key funding opportunities, including the Canadian Foundation for Innovation (CFI) and the New Frontiers in Research Fund (NFRF).
Opening Remarks: Graham Dellaire (CE2C Co-Lead, Dalhousie University)
We had a full roster of talks representing several of the Canadian Partnership for Tomorrow Projects (CPTP) including talks from Dr. Trevor Dummer (Co-PI of the BC Generations Project), Dr. Donna Turner (Lead of Manitoba’s Tomorrow Project), Shandra Harmon (Strategic Director of the Alberta Tomorrow Project), and Dr. Nolwenn Noisel (Research Associate, CartaGENE). Representing the Nova Scotia Health Authority (NSHA) Cancer Epidemiology was Dr. Nathalie Saint-Jacques who discussed her recently funded Nova Scotia Community Cancer Matrix, and representing the Mi’kmaq Nation was Aaron Prosper, Scientific Director of the Mi’kmaq Cancer Care Strategy.
Left to Right: Trevor Dummer (BC Generations, CPTP); Donna Turner (Manitoba Tomorrow Project); Shandra Harman (Alberta’s Tomorrow Project)
Nathalie Saint-Jacques (NSHA) and Aaron Prosper (Mi’kmaq Nation Cancer Care Strategy)
Scientific talks included a study of small non-coding RNAs in mesothelioma and lung cancer associated with asbestos and arsenic exposure by Dr. Victor Martinez (Clinical Genomicist at the IWK Health Centre), and a study on the impact of early environmental exposures on the epigenome by Dr. Meaghan Jones (University of Manitoba).
(IWK Health Centre)
(University of Manitoba)
Also in attendance were representatives from the NSHA Tissue Bank, Drs. Sydney Croul and Zhaolin Xu, Drs. Wan Lam and Callum MacAulay from the BC Cancer Research Centre (Vancouver), as well the Directors of the Integrated Microbiome Resource (Dr. Morgan Langille, Dalhousie University) and the Health and Environments Research Centre [HERC] Laboratory (Dr. Jong Kim).
Our keynote speaker was Dr. Aaron Goodarzi, Co-Lead of CE2C, Research Lead of Evict Radon and Canada Research Chair for Radiation Exposure Disease at the University of Calgary. Dr. Goodarzi discussed the impacts of radon and alpha particle radiation on human health and gave us updates on the national roll out of Evict Radon. The meeting ended with a general discussion of future grant opportunities, and how to coordinate national efforts on arsenic and radon awareness.
Keynote Speaker: Aaron Goodarzi (CE2C Co-Lead, University of Calgary; Evict Radon)