McMaster University

McMaster University

Faculty of
Health Sciences

Faculty of Health Sciences

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To Note:

Jane Foster article most cited in last 90 days

An article by Jane Foster, an assistant professor of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences, has been identified as one of the most cited by the journal Trends in Neurosciences.

The paper entitled, "Gut–brain axis: how the microbiome influences anxiety and depression," published in May 2013, was one of the most downloaded articles from the journal in the last 90 days.

In her review, Foster suggested that gut microbiota are an important player in how the body influences the brain, contribute to normal healthy homeostasis, and influence risk of disease, including anxiety and mood disorders.



McMaster University's Faculty of Health Sciences trains physicians, nurses, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, health care researchers, physician assistants and midwives to work together in teams, providing the finest patient care.

Our programs cover the spectrum of health care, including the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine, School of Nursing, School of Rehabilitation Science, Midwifery, a Bachelor of Health Sciences program and Canada's first physician assistants' program.

We are known for innovating small group, problem-based education, with a focus on self-directed, life-long learning, as well as the development of evidence-based medicine.

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Rare genetic forms of obesity more numerous, diverse than previously thought

David Meyre- Photo

A new study led by researchers from McMaster University has shown that, while relatively rare in the general population, there are a large number of varied, genetic syndromes associated with obesity.

Previous reviews on obesity have reported 20 to 30 syndromes, but in the first systematic review on obesity syndromes, investigators from McMaster and the University of British Columbia have catalogued 79 syndromes with obesity that have been described in the literature. The research was published today in Obesity Reviews and led by David Meyre, an associate professor of the Department of Health Research Methods, Evidence, and Impact with the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine.

"Rare genetic forms of obesity with many additional clinical features, such as intellectual disability, facial and organ-specific abnormalities, do exist," said Meyre, the senior author of the paper who holds the Canada Research Chair in Genetics of Obesity.

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Survivors of childhood brain tumours have increased body fat

Dr. M. Constantine Samaan- Photo

McMaster University researchers have discovered that while survivors of childhood brain tumours have a similar Body Mass Index (BMI) to healthy children with no cancer, they have more fat tissue overall, and especially around the abdomen.

Brain tumors are the most common cause of cancer-related deaths in children, and are the second most common type of cancers in children. Over the past few years, advances in cancer therapy have resulted in an increasing number of children who survive their diagnosis of brain tumors.

However, this improved survival is offset by their high risk of several comorbid conditions and early death. More recently, there is evidence that these survivors are developing heart disease, stroke and Type 2 diabetes relatively early in life, which may contribute to poor outcomes and early death. The risk factors for these outcomes have not been thoroughly investigated.

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Renaissance Award winners to study perception of disability, gender identity

Kira Gossack-Keenan- Photo

By Matt Terry, March 17, 2017

Two McMaster students will spend the summer learning about the relationship between culture and identity in five different countries around the world.

Medical student Kira Gossack-Keenan will travel to India, Cambodia and Vietnam to find out how the region's inhabitants relate to and interact with those with physical disabilities. She'll also study the relationship between disability and art, while producing some artistic works of her own along the way.

"We're not perfect in Canada, but we try to incorporate accommodation into many of the things we do," says Gossack-Keenan. "In many countries, access to the physical environment continues to be less accessible to those with disabilities, and I'd like to explore this issue."

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In the Media

  • Global National, The Spectator,, CHCH TV, The Centre for Infectious Disease and Policy interviewed Eric Brown (Institute for Infectious Disease Research) about his lab's discovery that the antiprotozoal drug Pentamidine can disrupt the cell surface of Gram-negative bacteria and when used with antibiotics works against multidrug resistant bacteria.
  • Jacarandafm and other media covered the discovery of a new gene that is seen as a major cause of sudden death among young people and athletes.  Guillaume ParĂ© (Population Health Research Institute) worked with researchers in South Africa and Italy.
  • The Irish Times picked up on comments made by Mark Tarnopolsky (Medicine and Pediatrics) in the New York Times noting that it's just unequivocal that caffeine improves athletic performance. It's been shown in well-respected labs in multiple places around the world.
  • In an article promoting screening for colon cancer in the Brantford Expositor, Barry Lumb (Gastroenterology) confirmed the importance of people getting checked for this disease beginning in their early 50s.
  • The Globe and Mail highlighted a new research study by graduate student Anthony Gatti and Monica Maly (Rehabilitation Science) that explored the subtle changes in knee cartilage that occur after running or cycling and offers guidance for people with osteoarthritis.
  • Jean Clinton (Offord Centre for Child Studies) talked to CBC's Metro Morning about kindergarten.
  • A Globe and Mail article featured research using the Early Development Instrument. The first EDI study mentioned was co-authored by Magdalena Janus (Offord Centre for Child Studies)
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