Ending the guessing game for infectious patients, Calgary

14 September, 2016 | 19:00 - 22:00

This event will focus on new diagnostic techniques for identifying infections.
This event will focus on new diagnostic techniques for identifying infections.

About this event

When a patient with a serious infection enters a hospital the MDs present have to play a guessing game with their treatments. This is because the current techniques to determine what is causing the infection are archaic in nature. The most common techniques for detecting infections rely on growing potential pathogens in a laboratory setting, which can take up to three full days. This is time that many patients simply do not have. While waiting for a confirmed diagnosis physicians apply broad-spectrum antibiotics, which are discontinued once the cause of the infection is known. This short exposure to our last remaining antibiotics is a major cause of antibiotic resistance in hospitals, and is pushing us towards an era where a simple infection could become fatal.

A new breed of diagnostic tools is needed. Robert’s work takes advantage of proteins that have evolved over millennia in the human immune system. When these proteins are tethered to an electrode it creates a sensor that can identify what type of pathogen is infecting a patient in minutes. This evolution-inspired approach to sensor design could decrease the time it takes for the right treatment to be applied, reducing the spread of antibiotic resistance and improving patient outcomes.

Date: Wednesday 14 September 2016
Time: 7.00 – 8.39 pm
Location: The Danish-Canadian Club, 727, 11th Avenue SW, Calgary

Web: www.cpgce.org

Free to attend: Guests and members of the public welcome. A complimentary snack will be served after the presentation

Event materials

The following materials are available for download:

Robert Mayall

Robert is a Vanier Scholar in Chemistry at the University of Calgary, where he is working towards a PhD on the development of next-generation biosensors for both health and military applications. His work focuses on combining electrochemistry and biology in order to create novel sensor designs that can be used in a variety of settings. Having achieved his Bachelor’s degree in Biomedical Sciences, he is enjoying branching into the fields of both chemistry and nanotechnology.

Outside of his graduate studies, Robert is a Co-Founder of a biotechnology startup, FREDsense Technologies, which is creating automated sensor suites for water contamination with a focus on the mining industry. The company was developed from a project in the International Genetically Engineered Machines Competition, on which Robert was a team lead. Robert is mostly involved on the technical side of the company and enjoys the challenge of bringing a scientific project through to commercialization.