Drs. Laprise and Al-Waeli awarded Alpha Omega Grants

December 2017


Congratulations to postdoctoral fellow Dr. Claudie Laprise and PhD student Dr. Haider Al-Waeli for being awarded the Alpha Omega Foundation of Canada Graduate Student Grant. They were amongst two of thirteen projects selected for the 2017 award.

Dr. Claudie Laprise (Supervisor: Dr. Belinda Nicolau) was selected for her project entitled ‘Human papillomavirus and head and neck cancers: a lifecourse epidemiologic approach’. The postdoctoral fellow in the Division of Cancer Epidemiology, and the Faculty of Dentistry at McGill University focuses her research on human papillomavirus (HPV) and cancers of the upper aero-digestive tract.

HPV is a strong risk factor for head and neck cancers (HNC), specifically the oropharyngeal cancer (OPC) subsite, a disease with high morbidity, and low survival rates. To date, only alpha-HPV types have been investigated in relation to HNC risk. Dr. Laprise’s project is to investigate the role of beta- and gamma-human papillomaviruses (HPV) in head and neck cancers, using data from the HeNCe (Head and Neck Cancer) Life study, an international epidemiological case-control study of head and neck cancers lead by Dr. Belinda Nicolau. Dr. Laprise and her team expect that the results will contribute to further understanding the role of oral HPV infection in the development of HNC.

Dr. Haider Al-Waeli (Supervisors: Drs. Belinda Nicolau and Faleh Tamimi) was selected for his project entitled ‘Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs’ Chronotherapy could enhance post-operative recovery of bone fracture surgery’. The PhD student in Craniofacial Health Science in the Faculty of Dentistry is interested in investigating a new approach of using anti-inflammatory medications after oral surgeries.

Pain intensity and our ability to heal varies through the day due to an internal day-and-night rhythm that regulates our body. According to this rhythm, most of the healing and recovery happen when we are sleeping while pain and inflammation are most intense when we are awake. Dr. Al-Waeli’s project seeks to improve the way we manage bone fractures with NSAIDs by instance the effect of timing the dose of Advil with the body day-night rhythm to maximize the benefits of the drugs and minimize its side effects.

The purpose of the Alpha Omega grant program is to provide research training experience for postgraduate students with high academic standing. The long-range objective is to increase awareness among selected residents, students and fellows of the intellectual satisfaction of research and increase the possibility of their selecting a career including dental research.

The grants are assessed by the grants committee prior to the annual foundation meeting and then presented to the members for a final vote for approval.

For more information see here.

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