Two scientists from the University of Ottawa Heart Institute have been awarded with top honours from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR). Dr. Erin Mulvihill and Dr. Wenbin Liang are the recipients of Early Career Investigator Awards from the CIHR, along with funding to pursue additional research in their fields of study.
Dr. Mulvihill will study the direct effects of the glucagon-like receptor on the entry of post-meal fats (chylomycrons) into the lacteal, the lympatic capillary that absorbs dietary fats in the liner cells in the guts.
Findings will clarify how the glucagon-like receptor acts to regulate post-meal lipid levels in the bloodstream, and how it may be targeted to reduce cardiovascular or metabolic diseases.
For this project, Post-prandial lipid lowering in T2DM: Investigating the molecular mechanisms of GLP-1 mediated reductions in chylomycron secretion, Mulvihill is to receive $343,731 over 3 years.
Dr. Liang will study the mechanisms underlying arrhythmias after a heart attack. His research group has demonstrated – for the first time – a factor normally expressed in the pacemaker cells of the heart, is also expressed in the muscle cells of the heart chambers after a heart attack.
His team will test the idea that expression of this transcription factor in the chamber muscle cells brings pacemaker properties and causes arrhythmias in heart attack survivors.
The results are anticipated to inform new therapies to improve quality of life and reduce premature deaths. For this project, Novel mechanisms of ventricular tachyarrhythmias, Liang is to receive $345,000 over 3 years.
Congratulations to Drs. Mulvihill and Liang!