Our Research Members
Professor, Department of Pediatrics and Physiology
Senior Associate Scientist, Genetics & Genome Biology Program, Hospital For Sick Children
555 University Avenue
Toronto, ON M5G 1X8
Professor, Department of Anthropology
Type 2 diabetes is one of the most serious public health issues in Canada and on a global scale. There are striking differences in prevalence among ethnic groups. The prevalence of type 2 diabetes among Aboriginal people is higher than in the general population, and elevated risk has also been described for other groups, such as Hispanics. One of the major goals of Dr. Parra’s research is to identify type 2 diabetes genetic risk factors in Hispanic populations, using different approaches, such as candidate gene studies, admixture mapping and genome-wide association.
Associate Professor, Lawrence S. Bloomberg Faculty of Nursing
Nurse Practitioner – Adult, Cardiac Surgery, Kingston General Hospital
Visiting Associate Professor, Xiang Ya Nursing School, Central South University, China
I have worked as a Nurse Practitioner in Cardiac Surgery since 1998, and in my role have cared for many individuals with diabetes (T2DM). Many patients who have sternal wound infections have diabetes, and many individuals have poor blood sugar control following cardiac surgery. I am interested in the prevention of complications in individuals with diabetes, with a specific interest is in sex and gender and the prevention of cardiovascular disease. I have been a co-investigator with Dr. Stewart Harris investigating diabetes in several Indigenous (First Nation, Inuit and Métis) communities in Canada, am a co-investigator and member of the Training and Mentoring and Knowledge Translation Goal Groups with Diabetes Action Canada (DAC), and have received funding from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (in collaboration with Clinical Trials Ontario) to build capacity for Patient-Oriented Research in Canada.
Professor, Dalla Lana School of Public Health
Senior Scientist, Program in Genetics and Genome Biology, Hospital for Sick Children
Long-term complications of diabetes, including eye and kidney disease cluster in families suggesting that genetic factors may be involved. Using DNA from large numbers of people with diabetes who have their complications measured, we are using high throughput methods to measure all of the common genetic variation in the human genome to identify which ones are associated with specific complications. In addition, we are identifying genetic loci that are associated with the major risk factors for diabetes complications – glycemia, blood pressure, body composition and lipids.
Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism
Staff Physician, University Health Network
60 Murray Street
Toronto, ON M5T 3L9
My research initiatives focus on using epidemiological techniques to explore the natural history of diabetes complications and novel strategies for their prevention. My major clinical research areas include:
Characterizing the natural history of diabetic polyneuropathy and defining the best methods for clinical assessment.
Exploring the pattern of renal function decline and its determinants early in the course of nephropathy in type 1 diabetes.
Diabetes technologies, including the process of care for intensive insulin therapy.
Professor, Temerty Faculty of Medicine, Department of Immunology
Medical Sciences Building, Room 7332
1 King's College Circle
Toronto, ON M5S 1A8
We are interested in the role of innate immunity, specifically Nod like receptors, as well as the microbiota in diabetes pathogenesis.
Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, and Department of Immunology
The objective of our research program is to study the role of differential colonization of the intestine by commensal bacteria on the development of anti-pancreatic autoimmunity in humans and murine models of the disease with the objective to understand how environmental changes can affect the expression of diabetogenic genotypes.
Professor, Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology
Clinician-Scientist, St. Michael’s Hospital
Research in my laboratory focuses on the immunology, pathogenesis and therapy of type 1 diabetes. We are investigating drugs that can induce the regeneration of pancreatic beta cells, or prevent beta-cell death. This includes studies of GABA, GLP-1, Klotho, TGF-beta inhibitors, and other molecules or drugs relevant to diabetes therapy. In many cases, human pancreatic islets are transplanted into immunodeficient cells for in vivo studies. This work requires the application of a wide variety of immunological, biochemical, cellular and molecular biological techniques, in relevant disease models.