Young Minds of MS Research
Young Minds of MS Research is a chance for graduate students, postdoctoral fellows and new researchers to share their multiple sclerosis (MS) research, which is taking place through the University of Alberta, University of Calgary and University of Lethbridge. Conference participants have the opportunity to learn about promising research from up and coming MS researchers, who in turn have the opportunity to share what their research means for MS today, as well as what it may mean tomorrow.
For MS Connect, Young Minds of MS Research will consist of both a poster session and oral presentations.
15 young or up and coming researchers will be invited to present their research at MS Connect in poster format. The poster session will run from 12:30 - 1:30 pm on Saturday, September 28th with the researchers available to answer questions. Posters will be available for viewing throughout the entire conference.
Out of the 15 researchers invited to present their research via poster, three will be invited to give a short 15-minute presentation at MS Connect.
We encourage you to stop by, learn, connect and speak with these researchers! As part of the Young Minds, you the audience will be key in providing input into selecting a winner of the best poster and oral presentation at the conference. With each winner receiving a small award to support them in their continued MS research efforts.The Young Minds of MS Research is made possible through collaboration and partnership between the Alberta MS Network and the MS Society of Canada, Alberta and Northwest Territories Division.
Kevin Thorburn is a PhD candidate in Bradley Kerr’s lab at the University of Alberta. He is currently supported by a doctoral studentship from the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada. The primary goal of Kevin’s research is to understand why chronic facial pain occurs more frequently in people with MS. He is currently studying how damage to glial cells results in nerve injury and demyelination in an animal model of MS. Outside of his lab activities, Kevin has volunteered with the MS Society and is team captain of the MS Bike Leduc to Camrose team Go for Spoke.
Born and raised in Hamilton, Ontario, I attained my undergraduate degree and a keen interest in science at the University of Guelph. In 2010, I followed that interest out to Calgary to start a PhD in Biochemistry, studying the development of blood vessels using zebrafish as a model system. After completing my degree, a growing desire to put my research skills to use for the betterment of human health landed me a postdoctoral position in the lab of Dr. Robin Yates, where I have undertaken projects investigating the immune system and multiple sclerosis. When not in the lab, I enjoy getting out to the mountains for hikes, checking out the local breweries and dabbling in the occasional birdwatching endeavour.
Megan Morgan obtained a Biology degree from Vancouver Island University in 2014. Her scientific career began by studying everything from parasites in fish to C02 respiration in plants, biosolid fertilizers, and bird migration before becoming hooked on studying the brain and its enormous impact on our wellbeing. She examined the effects of nutrition on stroke recovery at the University of Saskatchewan for two years before moving to Calgary to be close to the mountains again. She now works as a Research Assistant in the lab of Dr. Peter Stys, M.D. in the Hotchkiss Brain Institute (HBI) at the University of Calgary. Their research seeks to determine the most proximal triggers of MS using mouse models and advanced imaging techniques. Outside of the laboratory, Megan is a member of the MS Bike Team “Myelin Spinners” representing the HBI.