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Global Knowledge Sharing will Facilitate Cures for Diseases

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‘Models of Human Diseases’ is an ambitious initiative started by two University of Toronto researchers, Drs. Lorelei and Rosalind Silverman. The project, which is sponsored by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), aims to accelerate the drug discovery process by improving communication between academic research groups, physicians, pharmaceutical companies, and patient advocacy groups. It is in part a database of all the models of diseases currently being used in research and also a new forum for global scientific collaboration.

Dr. Rosalind Silverman from the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology and Dr. Lorelei Silverman from the Physiology Department at the University of Toronto, started gathering volunteers to work on collecting information for the database in fall 2009.

Current volunteers include high school, undergraduate and graduate students from Toronto, as well as other members of the biomedical research community. In May 2010 their grant application to CIHR came first out of the pool of applicants. Gaining sponsorship from CIHR has allowed them to move forward and organise an international conference.

On 29th June 2010 the initiative will host the first ‘Annual International Models of Human Diseases conference’ at the University of Toronto and biomedical research scientists are invited to submit posters detailing their work. Although the conference is being held at the University of Toronto it will also be an online conference so that researchers from all over the world can contribute easily and in an environmentally conscious way.

The details of the conference are as follows:

• Event: First Annual International Models of Human Diseases Conference (sponsored by Canadian Institutes of Health Research)

Date: June 29th 2010; Time: 8 am – 7 pm

Place: Online and also at the MacLeod Auditorium, 1 King’s College Circle, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.