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The Canada Research Chair (CRC) program today announced an investment of $ 7.3 million in funding towards research being done at the University of Manitoba. As part of this announcement, Dr. Lorrie Kirshenbaum’s Canada Research Chair in Molecular Cardiology has been promoted from tier 2 to tier 1, with increased funding over seven years of $1.4 million – allowing him to build on his research program at St. Boniface Hospital.

Kirshenbaum, professor, Principal Investigator in Cardiac Gene Biology, Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences, and professor, Departments of Physiology and Pharmacology & Therapeutics, University of Manitoba Faculty of Medicine, focuses his research on signal mechanisms that regulate cell growth and death with the aim of developing new treatment interventions to prevent cardiac disease. Results of his ongoing leading edge research have already demonstrated that particular genes are intimately involved in both the life and death of cardiac cells. Using viruses to deliver genes into cardiac muscle cells to direct them how to behave.

This world class technique, pioneered by Kirshenbaum, has already improved the efficiency of introducing the new DNA (genes) into these cells. The implications of this research are immense as scientists could use the therapy to direct cells to suppress or kill cancer cells, or to kill off other genes which are provoking the death of cells that heart patients actually need.

Canada Research Chairs press release