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About Sickkids
About SickKids

July 25, 2011

SickKids researchers honoured with Early Researcher Awards

Today, the Hon. Glen Murray, Ontario’s Minister of Research & Innovation, recognized the Toronto researchers benefitting from this year’s Ontario Research Fund and Early Researcher Awards (ERA). Drs. Brian Ciruna and Jennifer Stinson from The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) were among those to receive Early Researcher Awards.

“We’re proud of the exceptional work our Toronto researchers do. Their contributions are making the world a better place, starting right here with new ideas and jobs, which fuel job creation and economic growth, and our government is proud to support them,” said Glen Murray, Minister of Research and Innovation.

Ciruna and Stinson are among 334 emerging researchers and their teams from 19 institutions across Ontario to receive Early Researcher Awards.

Ciruna, a Scientist in Developmental & Stem Cell Biology at SickKids and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Molecular Genetics at the University of Toronto, received his ERA funding for his project Determining the underlying cause of polycystic kidney disease. Polycystic kidney disease (PKD) affects one in 500 people. The current treatment options include dialysis or transplants, both of which are costly. At SickKids, Ciruna and his team are studying what causes PKD, which could, in turn, lead to new and more effective treatments.

Stinson, a Scientist in Child Health Evaluative Sciences and a Clinical Nurse Specialist/Nurse Practitioner in Anaesthesia at SickKids and Assistant Professor in the Department of Nursing at the University of Toronto, received her ERA funding for her project The use of e-health technologies to promote paediatric disease self-management. Children with chronic and life-threatening illnesses such as arthritis and cancer suffer from pain that is often under-appreciated and under-treated by doctors. Stinson and her team at SickKids are developing web-based technologies to help young people manage their own pain and improve their quality of life.

The Early Researcher Award (ERA) program helps promising, recently-appointed Ontario researchers build their research teams of undergraduates, graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, research assistants, associates and technicians. The goal of the program is to improve Ontario’s ability to attract and retain the best and brightest research talent.

For a full list of winners and to read the news release from the Ministry of Research & Innovation, visit their website.