CSMB Year-End Newsletter – December 2023

Message from the President, Hans-Joachim Wieden

Dear CSMB members

Hans-Joachim Wieden

It is my pleasure to present to you a year-end review of activities at the Canadian Society of Molecular Biosciences (CSMB). The CSMB aims to support scientists at all stages of their careers and from all horizons, to advocate for research, promote collaboration and celebrate our successes. Being a member of the CSMB supports the development of a strong community of researchers in the area of molecular biosciences. Please renew your membership if you have not already done so.

I also invite you to help us celebrate Canadian researchers by nominating colleagues to one of the four prizes we will be giving out in 2024, for researcher at the New investigator stage to Senior researchers. We are always proud to use these prizes to showcase and celebrate Canadian scientists yearly. Please view details of available awards and note that the nomination deadline is December 31, 2023, so send your nominations in soon!

Our annual meetings are great opportunities to strengthen the links in our community, and I invite you to join us for our next meeting, which will take place May 6-8, 2024 in Winnipeg. Meeting Chair Dr. Mojgan Rastegar has been working hard with the other members of the organizing committee to develop a program that is broad in scope, so I invite all members to participate. I look forward to welcoming you there.

Advocacy is as always an important focus for the CSMB. You can read some highlights of our advocacy work this year below. Get involved with us to promote increases in research funding in Canada!

Finally, I also want to highlight the importance of trainees for the CSMB. I want to congratulate Ecaterina (Cathy) Cozma and Matthew Berg on the organization of the CSMB Trainee seminar series, which are a monthly seminar series to highlight the amazing and innovative research being carried out in Canada, including the work of our trainees. The full schedule of upcoming seminars, and recordings of past events are available on our website and in this newsletter. Please check this out.

One other way the CSMB supports trainees is through the provision of support for graduate student activities. We are proud of this year’s awardees – you can read about them below.

On behalf of the Board of Directors of the CSMB, I send you our best wishes for the end of year celebrations, and a healthy and happy new year.

Warm wishes

Hans-Joachim Wieden.

Call for nominations – 2024 CSMB Awards

Nominations are now accepted for the 2024 CSMB Awards.
Deadline for nominations is December 31, 2023

CSMB Arthur Wynne Gold Medal

The Canadian Society for Molecular Biosciences (CSMB) Arthur Wynne Gold Medal is presented by the CSMB to an individual who has made a major contribution to molecular biosciences in Canada over their career. The Medal is named in honor of Professor Arthur M. Wynne, the first President of the Society, and was initiated in 2007 to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of CSMB. The recipient is presented with a plaque depicting the likeness of Professor Wynne.
More: https://csmb-scbm.ca/awards/csmb-arthur-wynne-gold-medal/

CSP Senior Investigator Award

The award recognizes exceptional Canadian scientists with a record of outstanding achievement in molecular biosciences research who have also demonstrated exceptional teaching, leadership and/or contributions to the broader community.
More: https://csmb-scbm.ca/awards/canadian-science-publishing-senior-investigator-award/

Jeanne Manery Fisher Memorial Lecture

In honor of the late Jeanne Manery Fisher, Professor of Biochemistry, University of Toronto, an eminent woman will be selected by the Society every second year for her scientific accomplishments and will present a keynote lecture at the Society’s Annual Meeting.
More: https://csmb-scbm.ca/awards/csmb-jeanne-manery-fisher-memorial-lecture/

CSMB New Investigator Award

The Canadian Society for Molecular Biosciences (CSMB) New Investigator Award was established by the Society to recognize and support the next generation of scientists in Canada. The award is given on the basis of (i) excellence in research and (ii) demonstration of leadership.
More: https://csmb-scbm.ca/awards/csmb-new-investigator-award/

Awards will be presented at the next CSMB annual meeting.

CSMB Meetings

CSMB 2023 Meeting in Ottawa

CSMB 2023 Meeting group picture

The CSMB wishes to congratulate Dr. Michael Downey (University of Ottawa), Chair of the organizing committee of the 66th annual CSMB meeting: Metabolic Regulation of Cell signaling held in Ottawa, May 30 – June 2, 2023, at the Ottawa Institute for Systems Biology (OISB).

Sessions on a broad range of topics were presented, with the majority of talks in platform session chosen from submitted abstracts. Lively poster sessions, networking opportunities and sessions organized by trainee and for trainees were additional highlights of the meeting. View the program on the meeting website

We want to thank all the members of the organizing committee for their hard work:

Dr. Michael Downey (chair), Dr. Mary-Ellen Harper, Dr. Erin Mulvihill, Dr. Mathieu Lavallée-Adam, Dr. Morgan Fullerton, Julie Careau-Hunter and Dr. Onyekachi Ononye, post-doctoral fellow, who was lead of the trainee committee.

Congratulations to the winners of travel awards to the meeting:

Mercy AkumaUniversity of OttawaRyan Russell
Bhuvan AnbalaganQueen’s UniversityMaria Aristizabal
Mohammed Ayan ChhipaToronto Metropolitan UniversitySarah Sabatinos
Angela ChingCarleton UniversityJenny Bruin
Mayrene Horta RemediosUniversity of CalgaryVanina Zaremberg
Laurie Lee-GloverUniversity of CalgaryTim Shutt
Katie (Yu-Qian) MaoUniversity of TorontoWalid Houry
Reshma NairMontreal Heart InstituteBruce Allen
Fatemeh RezaeiUniversity of OttawaJyh-Yeuan Lee
Michael SalsaaDalhousie UniversityGregory Fairn
Diana Schwendener ForkelToronto Metropolitan UniversityCostin Antonescu
Matthew TrioloUniversity of OttawaMireille Khacho
Purvi TrivediDalhousie UniversityBarbara Karten
Natasha TrzaskalskiUniversity of Ottawa Heart InstituteErin Mulvihill
Mitali UppalUniversity of OttawaMary-Ellen Harper

CSMB 2024 Meeting in Winnipeg

Save the dates for the next CSMB meeting: From May 6 – May 8th in 2024, the University of Manitoba will host the 67th Annual Canadian Society for Molecular Biosciences (CSMB) Meeting in Winnipeg, at the University of Manitoba Bannatyne campus. The conference theme will be “Gene Regulation: From Cells to Systems. This will be an opportunity to showcase Canadian Science in an emerging field and to develop new research opportunities and collaborations. Our aim is to attract researchers from across Canada and internationally by offering top-tier speakers and special programming for trainees, all at an affordable cost. We encourage you to register your entire team!

Visit the meeting website here

The organizer of the meeting are: Dr. Mojgan Rastegar (Chair), Dr. James Davie, Dr. Hans-Joachim Wieden, Dr. Susan Logue, Dr. Sean McKenna, Dr. Denice Bay, Dr. Sanoji Wijenayake and Dr. Paul Marcogliese

Registration is now open! See additional key dates here

  • Early Registration: now open!
  • Abstract submission deadline (Oral Presentation): February 02, 2024
  • Abstract submission deadline (Poster): February 16, 2024
  • Early bird registration deadline: February 16, 2024
  • Abstract acceptance notifications: March 07, 2024
  • Regular registration deadline: March 29, 2024
  • See you in Winnipeg! (May 06-May 08)

CSMB Trainees

CSMB supported trainee activities

The CSMB is proud to provide support for trainee-led activities organized across Canada. The winners of 2023 are

CSMB Virtual Seminar Series

Organized by CSMB Trainee committee members Cathy Cozma and Matt Berg, the CSMB Virtual seminar series are an opportunity to showcase the amazing and innovative research being carried out in Canada, including the work of our trainees. Recordings of the first seminars, held February to July 2023 are available on the CSMB YouTube Channel

The series is scheduled to continue in 2024. Visit our website for the full schedule of talks

Congratulations to Cathy Cozma, incoming Chair of the IUBMB Trainee initiative

The CSMB wants to congratulate Ecaterina (Cathy) Cozma on her nomination as Chair of the International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Trainee initiative, starting in January 2024. She will be responsible for overseeing the Trainee Initiative for all regions world-wide and will be attending the 26th Congress of the IUBMB in September 2024 in Melbourne, Australia.

Cathy Cozma also participated in the IUBMB webinar Marketing Yourself for Academia & Industry. View the video here:


CSMB executives advocate for increased science funding in Canada

The CSMB held virtual meetings with key decision makers and stakeholders in Canadian Science, including

  • Dr. Alejandro Adem, Chair of NSERC
  • MP Blanchette-Joncas, Vice Chair of the House of Commons Science and Research Committee
  • Dr. Christian Baron,Vice-President, Research – Programs, CIHR
Alejandro Adem meeting

The CSMB also held in-person meetings in Ottawa with the Senior Policy Advisory team to the Minister of Health (Mark Holland) and Dr. Nemer, Chief Science Advisor

Mona Nemer meeting
Imogen Coe, Mona Nemer, Hans-Joachim Wieden, Trushar Patel

CSMB Executives participate in the Canadian Science Policy Conference

CSMB executives at the CSPC meeting
Tarik Moroy, Hans-Joachim Wieden, Imogen Coe, Walid Houry and Trushar Patel

In addition to in-person participation in the meeting, CSMB President Hans-Joachim Wieden moderated a virtual panel on the Impact of Science and Innovation on Society. The panel discussed the breadth of impacts that science has on society deriving from the confluence of the different aspects of the science and research enterprise. The discussion highlighted the interconnectivity of these aspects and how science can provide innovative solutions for societal challenges, as well as to inform public decision making and contribute to societal resilience in an ever-changing technology and geopolitical context.

We also invite you to listen to the CSPC 2023 interviews:

Submissions to consultations of the government of Canada

Read our latest submissions to:

Government Relations 101 training – December 7, 2023

The CSMB and Temple Scott Associates held an Effective Advocacy Webinar on December 7, 2023

In this session, the CMSB and TSA discussed the foundations of government relations and tips for effective lobbying.

Subjects covered :

  • What is CSMB advocating for at the federal level?
  • How can CSMB members enhance CSMB’s federal advocacy?
  • Tips for effective meetings with parliamentarians.
  • Election preparedness : what types of questions should I be asking candidates in the event of an election?

More advocacy opportunities

Evidence for Democracy will be bringing back the Science to Policy Accelerator (S2PA) program for its second year in 2024!

What is S2PA? S2PA is a program offered by Evidence for Democracy for early-career researchers across Canada to receive specialized training in public policy, positioning them as key knowledge brokers and emerging leaders at the science-policy interface.

From the Evidence for Democracy website

We encourage Early-Career investigators to consider this opportunity if interested in learning more about how decision making happens with respect to science, funding, scholarships and more. Applications will open in early 2024. Visit the Evidence for Democracy for more information about this program: https://evidencefordemocracy.ca/training/science-to-policy-accelerator/

CSPC announces Science Meets Parliament BC 2024

The Canadian Science Policy Centre (CSPC) announced that registration is now open for the first edition of Science Meets Parliament – British Columbia. This program is scheduled to take place in Victoria in spring 2024. Apply now! Deadline: January 5, 2024

Apply Now

Visit https://csmb-scbm.ca/advocacy/

Visit the CSMB Advocacy webpage for more news about our representation activities

CSMB Board meeting in Winnipeg

The CSMB board meeting was held December 11, 2023 in Winnipeg and was hosted by CSMB President Hans-Joachim Wieden. Board members from across Canada also joined by zoom. It was an opportunity to review our activities from the last months, and plan for new initiatives and opportunities for 2024. Thank you to all board members for your involvement and dedication to the promotion of Molecular Biosciences in Canada.

Membership renewal

We invite you to renew your membership in the CSMB for the year 2024 to support all our activities.