Revolutionary ways of imaging the human body are just two of the over 400 presentations at the 2016 London Health Research Day on March 29 at the DoubleTree by Hilton London Ontario and the London Convention Centre.

In its fifth year, London Health Research Day is the largest research day in Ontario, showcasing diverse research projects from students, trainees and postdoctoral scholars at Lawson Health Research Institute and Western University’s Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry.

Khadija Sheikh, PhD Candidate, and Derek Gillies, PhD Candidate, are giving oral presentations on how they are using different imaging techniques to improve outcomes for patients with asthma and liver cancer.

Sheikh has found an innovative use for magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) – imaging lung function in people with asthma. Currently, lung function is tested with devices that cannot see inside the lung, or devices like X-ray and computed tomography that expose the patient to unnecessary radiation.

In Sheikh’s study, participants with severe, uncontrolled asthma were assessed with different oral and imaging devices. Sheikh found that MRI provided detailed images showing abnormal retention of air in the lungs – detail which is not available through other methods. Her hope is to have the technique adopted in clinical use to help guide asthma therapy.

Gillies is using imaging to provide a real-time, stable image of the liver during surgery. Surgeons use a minimally-invasive surgical procedure to remove the tumour, relying on 2-D ultrasound for guidance, and trying to manually compensate for the movement of the liver as the patient breathes. This results in higher rates of cancer recurrence because the tumour is not completely removed in every surgery.

Gillies has developed a combination 2-D/3-D imaging system which uses an algorithm to stabilize the image of the liver and provide real-time guidance as the surgeon removes the tumour.

London Health Research Day also welcomes Dr. Peter Libby, cardiovascular specialist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, who is providing The Lucille & Norton Wolf Health Research Lecture. The event is open to the public and covers a wide-range of health care topics. More information is available online at


Media are invited to attend Sheihk and Gillie’s presentations – both will be available for interviews. Dr. Andrew Watson, Associate Dean, Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs, Schulich Medicine & Dentistry will also be available for interview.
Please contact Julia Capaldi to arrange.


London Health Research Day
Tuesday, March 29, 2016, The DoubleTree by Hilton London Ontario

8:15 - 10:00 a.m. Poster Presentations - Morning Session
10:15 - 11:15 a.m. Feature Platform Presentations - Morning Session *Presentation by Derek Gillies at 11 a.m., Prince of Wales Room
11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. Lunch and The Lucille & Norton Wolf Health Research Lecture Series, featuring: Dr. Peter Libby: “Inflammation and Atherosclerosis: A Translational Tale” (London Convention Centre)
1:30 - 3:15 p.m. Poster Presentations - Afternoon Session
3:30 - 4:30 p.m. Feature Platform Presentations - Afternoon Session *Feature Presentation by Khadija Sheikh at 4:15 p.m., Queen Victoria Room
5:30 - 6:30 p.m. Wine and Cheese Awards Reception (London Convention Centre)



Julia Capaldi
C: 519-636-5684




Western delivers an academic experience second to none. Since 1878, The Western Experience has combined academic excellence with life-long opportunities for intellectual, social and cultural growth in order to better serve our communities. Our research excellence expands knowledge and drives discovery with real-world application. Western attracts individuals with a broad worldview, seeking to study, influence and lead in the international community.


The Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry at Western University is one of Canada’s preeminent medical and dental schools. Established in 1881, it was one of the founding schools of Western University and is known for being the birthplace of family medicine in Canada. For more than 130 years, the School has demonstrated a commitment to academic excellence and a passion for scientific discovery.

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As the research institute of London Health Sciences Centre and St. Joseph’s Health Care London, and working in partnership with Western University, Lawson Health Research Institute is committed to furthering scientific knowledge to advance health care around the world.

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