Cole Foundation celebrates 10 years and $10 million of support for research

Credit: Alison Slattery

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The Cole Foundation is offering twenty-one new fellowship grants and one new investigator grant for a total funding value of $1 million towards research into the fight against pediatric and young…

This year, in continuing the tradition of past years, the Cole Foundation will be offering twenty-one new fellowship grants and one new investigator grant for a total funding value of $1 million to be disbursed over the course of the next two years towards research into the fight against pediatric and young adult leukemia and lymphoma.

Since the inception of these grants ten years ago and including this year, the Cole Foundation will have contributed over $10 million to more than 150 researchers in laboratories and hospitals situated in the Greater Montreal area through collaborations with l’Université de Montréal; McGill University; and INRS – Institut Armand-Frappier Research Centre.

“The Cole Foundation is committed to helping to develop the next generation of researchers, said Barry Cole, President of the foundation. The medical faculties at the Université de Montréal andMcGill University, as well as the Institut national de recherche scientifique (INRS) – Institut Armand-Frappier are working diligently to advance the fight against pediatric cancer and we’re pleased to be able to contribute to these efforts by providing grants to deserving young researchers.”

« The continued support of the Cole Foundation to McGill and Québec’s other leading institutions enables our early-career scientists to be at the forefront of pediatric leukemia research,” said Dr. David Eidelman, Vice-Principal (Health Affairs) and Dean of Medicine at McGill University. “This is a wonderful example of how philanthropic collaboration fosters discovery for the benefit of the communities we serve.”

« It is an immense pleasure for me to be able to once again thank the Cole Foundation on behalf of the fifteen grant recipients researching pediatric leukemia from the l’Université de Montréal, declared Dr.  Hélène Boisjoly, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at l’Université de Montréal. The announcement of the financial contribution from the Cole Foundation has been a highly anticipated day for researchers over the past ten years. It provides them with very good news. »

In connection with the new round of grants, the Cole Foundation is also organizing a day of discussions on the state of research in the field of pediatric cancer, to be held on May 13 this year at McGill University. The day-long event will include a special presentation by Dr. Stephen Hunger of The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, PA, who is going to speak about developing precision medicine therapies on pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia.

Cole Foundation Research Fellowships (2016-2018)

McGill University

  • Hosni Cherif, Lady Davis Institute
    Project: Identification of novels targets and biomarkers for the treatment and the diagnosis of the GCB-DLBCL pediatric lymphoma
  • Heather Duncan, McGill University Health Centre, Pediatric Hematology-Oncology
    Project: G protein-coupled receptor 56 as a potential regulator of leukemic stem cells
  • Deanna MacNeil, Lady Davis Institute
    Project: Telomeras regulation through post-translational modifications of dyskerin
  • Claudia Wever, Lady Davis Institute
    Project: Understanding apoptotic blocks in primary non-Hodgkin lymphoma samples
  • Ke Zhi Yan, McGill University
    Project: Role of the epigenetic regulator BRPF1 in leukemia development

Université de Montréal

  • Rachid Abaji, CHU Centre de recherche Sainte-Justine
    Project: Using whole exome sequencing data to identify pharmacogenetics markers in childhood leukemia
  • Léo Aubert, IRIC, Pathology and Cell Biology
    Project: Characterization of the surfaceome of normal and leukemic stem cell expanded with UM171 to improve the development of novel therapies for leukemia
  • Yahya Benslimane, IRIC, Medecine
    Project: Investigation synthetic sensitivity to telomerase inhibition in leukemia
  • Aubrée Boulet-Craig, CHU Centre de recherche Sainte-Justine, Neuropsychologie
    Project: Corrélats neuroanatomiques et neurofonctionnels prédisposant à l’apparition de difficultés en mathématiques chez des survivants de leucémie lymphoblastique aiguë pédiatrique
  • Willow Burns, CHU Centre de recherche Sainte-Justine, Psychologie
    Project: Towards a better understanding of the adjustment of parents facing childhood leukemia: Exploration of dyadic interactions for acting at the family level
  • Margaret Davis, IRIC, Pathology and Cell Biology
    Project: Novel functions of eukaryotic translation initiation factor 4E (elF4E) in leukemia.
  • Marion Dubuissez, Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital
    Project: Rôles du facteur de transcription Ikaros dans la terminaison de la transcription
  • Fida Khater, CHU Centre de recherche Sainte-Justine, Hemato-Oncology
    Project: Identification et validation fonctionnelle de nouvelles cibles thérapeutiques chez les patients leucémiques réfractaires au traitement ou en rechute dans le cadre de l’étude de faisabilité TRICEPS.
  • Céline Laumont, IRIC, Immunobiology
    Project: Identification of leukemia-specific antigens: a k-mer profiling approach
  • Vincent-Phillippe Lavallée, IRIC, Medicine
    Project: Towards an optimized prognostic classification of AML patients using novel markers, and improvement in diagnosis and treatment of acute promyelocytic leukemia related coagulopathy 
  • Charles-Etienne Lebert-Ghali, Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital
    Project: The role of CD271 in the suppression of graft-versus-host-disease by mesenchymal stem cells
  • Sophia Morel, CHU Centre de recherche Sainte-Justine, Nutrition
    Project: Place du microbiote intestinal dans la genèse des maladies cardiométaboliques chez les survivants de la leucémie lymphoblastique aiguë
  • Nandita Noronha, IRIC, Medecine
    Project: Validation of the HOX-MEIS1-PBX oncogenic complex as a bona fide therapeutic target in primary human leukemias
  • Pierre Priam, IRIC, Chromatin Structure and Stem Cell Biology
    Project: Role of SMARCD2, SWI/SNF subunit, in leukemia maintenance
  • Christine Sawchyn, Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital
    Project: Characterization of the KDM4A histone demethylase in pediatric acute myeloid leukemia
  • Aditi Sood, Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital
    Project: Optimizing the T cell repertoire for T-cell therapy for leukemia

Cole Foundation New Investigator Program

Alexandre Orthwein, Lady Davis Institute 
Project: Genomic instability and B-cell malignancies: Insight into DNA double-strand break pathways

About the Cole Foundation

The Cole Foundation offers two-year fellowships to clinical, doctoral and postdoctoral graduate scientists dedicated to research in leukemia and leukemia-related diseases in children and young adults. Through its fellowships, the Cole Foundation has committed more than $10 million to support leukemia researchers in Greater Montreal laboratories and hospitals. The Cole Foundation was created in 1980 by the late businessman John N. (Jack) Cole to support Montreal-based research in pediatric oncology and hematology. He established the Penny Cole Laboratory at the Montreal Children’s Hospital and the Jack Cole Chair in Pediatric Oncology and Hematology at McGill University.

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