BC CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL BIOBANK – COLLECTION OF MATERNAL SAMPLES & CLINICAL DATA FOR FUTURE RESEARCH

Principal Investigator: Dr. Suzanne Vercauteren

The BC Children’s Hospital Biobank collects, processes and stores samples and clinical data from women and babies to create a bank (or library) of samples. These samples can be used in future research to better understand the causes of diseases in women and families, with the ultimate goal of improving treatment and preventing diseases.

Primary Contact: Ashton Ellis, Research Coordinator, 604-875-2000 ext. 7841

About the study: Doctors and scientists at BC Women’s Hospital and BC Children’s Hospital have created the BC Children’s Hospital BioBank (BCCHB). The BCCHB collects, processes and stores samples and clinical data from women and babies to create a bank (or library) of samples. These samples can be used in future research to better understand the causes of diseases in women and families, with the ultimate goal of improving treatment and preventing diseases. The BioBank would like to invite you to donate blood, leftover blood, umbilical cord blood, and placenta to our BioBank. The majority of these samples are typically discarded at the time of birth, unless needed for clinical purposes or personal reasons. No additional time will be required on your behalf, aside from signing the consent form.

Why is this research important? Research carried out on your samples may help our understanding in pregnancy including complications related to pregnancy and how this affects the mother and babies with the ultimate goal to develop new treatments option. By agreeing to participate in the BioBank, you can contribute to many different studies while just signing one consent form.

Study status: Recruiting

Who can participate: We are currently and actively recruiting all women who plan to deliver at BC Women’s Hospital to participate. You are still eligible to participate in the BioBank if you are signed up for Canadian Blood Services’ Public Cord Blood Banking program.

Patient information form

Consent form

Pregnancy Reference Intervals for Safe Medicine (PRISM)

Researchers at UBC and BC Women’s Hospital are studying healthy pregnant women to develop a guide to help health care providers interpret lab test results in pregnancy.

Co-Principal Investigators:  Dr. Vilte Barakauskas and Dr. Benjamin Jung

Primary Contact:  Ashton Ellis, 604-875-2000, x 7841, ashton.ellis@cw.bc.ca

About the study:  Laboratory tests are often used by doctors to help diagnose medical concerns.  Care providers interpret test results by comparing a patient’s results to the results of a healthy population with similar characteristics, but there is limited information on what normal lab results are like during pregnancy.  Researchers at UBC and BC Women’s Hospital are studying healthy pregnant women to develop a guide to help health care providers interpret lab test results in pregnancy.

Why is this research important?  This study will help researchers at UBC and Children’s & Women’s Health Centre of BC to develop reference ranges specifically for women around the time of labour.  This will help health professionals identify and manage health problems that could impact moms and babies.

Study status: Recruiting

Who can participate?   

Women delivering at BC Women’s Hospital may participate if they meet the following criteria:

  • Age 19 to 45 years
  • Healthy with a low-risk pregnancy
  • Expecting one baby
  • Not smoking during pregnancy

What’s required?

  • 10-15 minute medical history questionnaire
  • Blood samples taken around the time of labour or C-section
  • 5 minute follow-up phone call or online survey

In total, this study may take up to 30 – 40 minutes of your time

Co-Investigators: Dr. Wee-Shian Chan, Dr. Khosrow Adeli, Dr. Hoaracio Osiovich, Dr. Suzanne Vercauteren

Contact Ashton Ellis to participate (ashton.ellis@cw.bc.ca).

Consent form: PRISM consent form-FINAL-19Mar2018

Maternal Microbiome Legacy Project

Principal Investigator: Dr. Deborah Money

Primary Contact: Zahra Pakzad, Research Coordinator, 604-875-2424 ext. 6379, zahra.pakzad@cw.bc.ca

About the study: The role of bacterial communities throughout the body in health and disease is being widely studied. Preliminary research shows a possible link between delivery type (vaginal or caesarean delivery) and the bacterial communities found in the gut in early infancy. In Canada 1 in 4 women have a caesarean delivery and there is some evidence of increased risk of conditions such as asthma, celiac disease, and allergies in caesarean-born infants. To date no cause for this increased risk has been identified. Some researchers have proposed that this potential transfer of maternal vaginal bacteria may be prevented by a caesarean delivery. This may result in altering the establishment of the infant’s own bacterial community. However a clear link between delivery type and the infant’s bacterial community has not been established.

This study will use advanced gene-based methods to profile the bacterial communities present in women who deliver vaginally or via caesarean section and connect these to the infant gut bacterial community in the first 3 months of life. This research will lead to a deeper understanding of the potential role of the maternal bacterial community on the infant gut bacterial community

Why is this research important? The practice of “vaginal seeding” has emerged, where a newborn delivered via caesarean section is swabbed with the mother’s vaginal secretions to transfer the mother’s vaginal bacteria to the infant, mimicking what the infant would have been exposed to during vaginal birth. However the benefits of “vaginal seeding” have not been evaluated and the safety of this practice has not been proven despite it coming into clinical use. The goal of our study will be to determine if the maternal bacterial community is actually transferred to the infant during delivery and if the different types of deliveries alter this transfer.

Interested in ParticipatingFollow the link to the survey, to have us contact you.

Study status: Launching March 5, 2018.

Co-Investigators: Dr. Janet Hill (University of Saskatchewan), Dr. K.S. Joseph (University of British Columbia), Dr. Julie van Schalkwyk (University of British Columbia), Dr. Arianne Albert (B.C. Women’s Hospital, Vancouver), Dr. Chelsea Elwood (University of British Columbia), Dr. Soren Grantt (University  of British Columbia), Dr. Kirsten Grabowska (University of British Columbia), Dr. Jennifer Hutcheon (University of British Columbia), Dr. Matthew Links (University of Saskatchewan), Dr. Amee Manges (University of British Columbia), Dr. Sheona Mitchell (University of British Columbia), Dr. Tim Dumonceaux (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Saskatchewan), Dr. Zoe Hodgson (B.C. Women’s Hospital), Dr. Janet Lyons (University of British Columbia).

Funded by: Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)

News: 

New $1.4 M CIHR Project Grant brings together three sites across the department to define the maternal legacy

Recruitment Materials:

  1. Recruitment Survey
  2. Recruitment Poster
  3. Recruitment Postcard

Vaginal Microbiome Group Initiative

vogue

Principal Investigator: Dr. Deborah Money

Primary Contact: Zahra Pakzad, Research Coordinator, 604-875-2424 ext. 6379, zahra.pakzad@cw.bc.ca

About the study: The VOGUE study team is comprised of a diverse group of scientists and clinicians from across Canada who are using genomic methods to study the microbial ecosystem (microbiome) of the vagina in varying states of health and disease. The VOGUE research program comprises 5 sub-studies, each examining the vaginal microbiome of distinct clinical populations: healthy non-pregnant women, women living with HIV, women with recurrent vulvovaginitis, pregnant women at low risk for preterm birth, and pregnant women at high risk for preterm birth. The team is united in their goal of capitalizing on advances in genomic sequencing technology to analyze the composition, distribution, and function of vaginal microbes, and probe the links between these microbes and disease to guide the development of novel diagnostic tools and interventions to improve women’s health in Canada and around the world.

Why is this research important? The healthy vagina is host to millions of microorganisms, including many types of “good” bacteria that protect against invading pathogens, and help to promote healthy pregnancy. Until now, clinicians and scientists have had relatively unsophisticated tools at their disposal for studying this critically important ecosystem. It has only been with recent advances in genomic sequencing technology that researchers have been able to uncover and truly understand the sheer number and diversity of organisms that inhabit the vagina (the vaginal microbiome). From a single swab taken from the vagina, we are now able to sequence a section of the DNA from each type of bacteria present, and use this unique DNA “fingerprint” to identify them. As we move toward more sophisticated ways to diagnose and treat imbalances in the vaginal microbiome, this will allow us to develop more personalized and targeted interventions, in order to restore a microbiome that optimizes reproductive health in individual women. Ultimately, we hope our work will lead to significant breakthroughs in the health and well-being of women in Canada and around the world.

Study status: Recruitment is limited to the VOGUE 1B2 sub-study (women with recurrent vulvovaginitis). Recruitment for all other sub-studies is complete. Data analysis, manuscript development, and knowledge translation are ongoing.

Study results/publication:

Albert AY, Chaban B, Wagner EC, Schellenberg JJ, Links MG, van Schalkwyk J, Reid G, Hemmingsen SM, Hill JE, Money D, and the VOGUE Research Group. A study of the vaginal microbiome in healthy Canadian women utilizing cpn60-based molecular profiling reveals distinct Gardnerella subgroup community state types. PLoS One. 2015;10(8):e0135620.

Co-Investigators: Dr. Alan Bocking (University of Toronto), Dr. Sean Hemmingsen (National Research Council’s Plant Biotechnology Institute, Saskatchewan), Dr. Janet Hill (University of Saskatchewan), Dr. Gregor Reid (University of Western Ontario), Dr. Tim Dumonceaux (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Saskatoon), Dr. Gregory Gloor (University  of Western Ontario), Dr. Matthew Links (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Saskatoon), Dr. Kieran O’Doherty (University of Guelph), Dr. Patrick Tang (Sidra Medical and Research Center), Dr. Julie van Schalkwyk (University of British Columbia), Dr. Mark Yudin (University of Toronto).

Funded by: Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and Genome BC

Prospective study of an interdisciplinary pelvic pain & endometriosis clinic (Etiology of dyspareunia in endometriosis)

The purpose of this study is to prospectively collect data from patients at the Centre for Pelvic Pain and Endometriosis clinic to investigate long-term patient outcomes, and the etiology and treatment of chronic pelvic pain.

Principal Investigator: Dr. Paul Yong

Primary Contact: Heather Noga, Research Coordinator, WHRI, 604-875-2424 ext 4924, Heather.Noga@cw.bc.ca

About the study: BC Women’s Centre for Pelvic Pain and Endometriosis is a tertiary referral centre in British Columbia dedicated to managing chronic pelvic pain (CPP) and endometriosis. The Centre offers a unique interdisciplinary approach that includes pain education workshops, pelvic floor physiotherapy, counselling, and medical and surgical management. The purpose of this study is to prospectively collect data from patients at the clinic to investigate long-term patient outcomes, and the etiology and treatment of CPP. Participants in the study will have their clinical intake questionnaires, physical exam, surgery, and pathology data included in the research and answer follow-up questionnaires at 6 months and 1-5 years.

Why is this research important? Chronic pelvic pain (CPP) (pelvic pain that lasts at least 3-6 months in duration) affects 15% of reproductive-aged women. It is a condition that can involve many physical, psychological, and behavioural consequences and have a devastating impact on quality-of-life. One of the most common origins of CPP is endometriosis, a condition in which endometrial tissue that usually lines the uterus grows outside of the uterus. However, pelvic pain may also result from numerous other gynaecological, musculoskeletal, gastrointestinal, or urological conditions, and can be difficult to manage. Therefore, there is benefit to an interdisciplinary approach in the management of CPP compared to standard treatment.

Study status: Recruitment, data collection, data analysis, and manuscript development is ongoing.

Who can participate: All patients referred for chronic pelvic pain and/ or endometriosis to the BC Women’s Centre for Pelvic Pain and Endometriosis.

Study results/publications:

Yosef, A., Allaire, C., Williams, C., Ahmed, G., Al-Hussaini, T., Abedellah, M., Wong, W., Lisonkova, S., Yong, P. (2016). Multifactorial contributions to the severity of chronic pelvic pain in women. American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology, epub ahead of print.

Co-Investigators: Dr. Catherine Allaire, Dr. Christina Williams, Dr. Mohamed Bedaiwy.

Funded by: Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), Vancouver Coastal Health Research Institute (VCHRI), University of British Columbia (UBC), Women’s Health Research Institute (WHRI).

Clinic website: http://www.womenspelvicpainendo.com/

Clinic page on research: http://www.womenspelvicpainendo.com/research/

Research Newsletter:

October 2016 Research Newsletter

Endometriosis – Determinants of Oncogenesis (ENDO-ONC) Full Scale Study

The aim of this study is to determine whether there are unique genetic changes in endometriosis that may play a role in malignant transformation to ovarian cancer or in the symptoms of pelvic pain and infertility.

Principal Investigator: Dr. Paul Yong

Primary Contact: Heather Noga, Research Coordinator, 604-875-2424 ext 4924, Heather.Noga@cw.bc.ca 

About the study: The aim of this study is to determine whether there are unique genetic changes in endometriosis that may play a role in malignant transformation to ovarian cancer or in the symptoms of pelvic pain and infertility. This will be done by comparing surgical tissue samples from women with endometriosis to women without endometriosis.

Participants in this study agree to provide for research purposes: a saliva sample, tissue removed from their surgery, endometrial biopsy (a sample from the lining of the uterus – only if a sample is not already being removed for clinical purposes).

Why is this research important? Endometriosis affects 10% of reproductive aged women, causes pain and infertility, and is now known to also be associated with ovarian cancer. Studying gene mutations and expression changes in surgical tissue samples of women with or without endometriosis will help us understand how it can lead to pain, infertility, ovarian cancer, and other associated symptoms.

Study status: Recruitment and data collection is ongoing.

Who can participate: You have (or are suspected to have) endometriosis OR another benign gynaecological condition, You have chosen surgical treatment.

Co-Investigators: Dr. Catherine Allaire, Dr. Christina Williams, Dr. Mohamed Bedaiwy, Dr. Jessica McAlpine, Dr. David Huntsman.

Funded by: Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), Canadian Cancer Society Research Institute (CCSRI), Women’s Health Research Institute (WHRI)

Partners: Ovarian Cancer Research Group (OvCaRe), Centre for Translational and Applied Genomics (CTAG).

Clinic website: http://www.womenspelvicpainendo.com/

Clinic Research Page: http://www.womenspelvicpainendo.com/research/

Does a Women’s Heart Center Change Clinical Outcomes?

It is not yet known whether specialized care centers like the Women’s Heart Center improves outcomes in women compared to usual care. Through this study we hope to better understand how gender specific care can impact the outcome for woman with a range of different cardiac conditions.

Principal Investigator: Dr. Tara Sedlak

Primary Contact: Dr. Tara Sedlack, Principle Investigator, VCH, 604-875-5487, Tara.Sedlak@vch.ca

About the study: This study has two aims: firstly, to create a database of patients attending the VGH/BCWH Women’s Heart Center (WHC) to facilitate the ability of future investigators to conduct research on a number of different of issues surrounding women and heart disease. The second aim is to examine whether attendance at a WHC improves outcomes of patients with heart disease or at risk for heart disease. We will collect clinical information and some basic demographic information and store this in a de-identified database. We will also ask participants to complete a total of 4 questionnaires over a 5 year period.

Why is this research important? It is not yet known whether specialized care centers like the Women’s Heart Center improves outcomes in women compared to usual care. Through this study we hope to better understand how gender specific care can impact the outcome for woman with a range of different cardiac conditions.

Study status: Ethics approval in progress.

Who can participate? Any woman who is being seen within the Women’s Heart Center at Vancouver General Hospital and/or BC Women’s Hospital will be invited to participate in this study who is fluent in English.

Co-Investigators: Natasha Prodan-Bhalla, Dr. Karin H. Humphries.

Determining Dietary Phenylalanine Requirements during Different Stages of Gestation in Healthy Pregnant Women

PHENYLALANINE-REQ-PREGNANCY is trying to determine the amount of dietary phenylalanine required by women during pregnancy to ensure healthy development of their baby.

Principal Investigator: Dr. Rajavel Elango

Primary Contact: Madeleine Ennis, Graduate Student 604-875-2000 x 4607, mennis@bcchr.ca

About the study: PHENYLALANINE-REQ-PREGNANCY is trying to determine the amount of dietary phenylalanine required by women during pregnancy to ensure healthy development of their baby.  Pregnancy is a critical time that necessitates sufficient nutrition to ensure healthy development of both the mother and the baby.  Amino acids such as phenylalanine are the building blocks of protein, which are used to create body tissue and support the immune system.  Phenylalanine must be obtained through the diet, and the requirements during pregnancy are not currently determined. Inadequate protein and amino acid consumption during pregnancy has been linked to future risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, and other metabolic problems in the baby.  Therefore, it is important to determine how much phenylalanine should be consumed during pregnancy.

Study status: Recruiting

Who can participate:

Women who are:

  • 20-40 years of age
  • pregnant with a single child
  • between 13-19 weeks of gestation or 33-39 weeks of gestation
  • free of chronic diseases/acute diseases, and have a full range of physical mobility

Co-Investigator: Dr. Ken Lim

Funded by: Canadian Institutes of Health Research

Consent Form: consent-form-for-participant

Tomosynthesis Mammographic Imaging Screening Trial (TMIST)

The TMIST study will help determine whether tomosynthesis results in fewer false-positive findings (reduced recall rate) than traditional 2D mammography.

Principal Investigator: Dr. Paula Gordon

Primary Contact: Melissa Watt, Research Coordinator, 604-875-2424 ext 4878, TMIST@cw.bc.ca

About the study: This study aims to enroll 3,000 women in the Vancouver area into a screening mammography trial. Each woman will be randomized either into a group that receives regular 2-dimensional screening or a new type of screening called Tomosynthesis, which has 3-dimensional capability. Both groups of woman will receive their respective screening mammography exams annually for three years.

Why is this research important? The findings from this study will help determine whether tomosynthesis results in fewer false-positive findings (reduced recall rate) than traditional 2D mammography.  This could result in less anxiety for women who receive abnormal results and lower economic burden of unnecessary follow-up on the health care system.

Study status: Recruiting

Who can participate? Women over the age of 50, fluent in English, Eligible for mammography screening at the Screening Mammography Program of British Columbia, Are able to return to the original sites (BC Women’s Hospital or X-Ray 505) for further screenings.

Co-Investigators: Dr. Linda Warren, Janette Sam, Dr. Andy Coldman, Dr. Joseph Yang.

Funded by: Gordon and Leslie Diamond family/BC Women’s Hospital & Health Centre Foundation

Partners: BC Women’s Hospital + Health Centre, BC Cancer Agency, Screening Mammography Program of BC, American College of Radiology (ACR), American College of Radiology Imaging Network (ACRIN)

Quadrivalent vaccine evaluation study (QUEST)

QUEST (Quadrivalent HPV Vaccine Evaluation Study) is a Canada-wide study designed to evaluate whether 2 doses of the HPV vaccine are just as effective as 3 doses at preventing Human Papillomavirus (HPV) infection and cervical cancer.

Principal Investigators: Drs. Gina Ogilvie, Simon Dobson

Primary Contact: QUESTION Coordinating Centre, 604.875.2636 (Toll Free: 1-866-502-2424), questhpvstudy@cfri.ca

About the Study: QUEST (Quadrivalent HPV Vaccine Evaluation Study) is a Canada-wide study designed to evaluate whether 2 doses of the HPV vaccine are just as effective as 3 doses at preventing Human Papillomavirus (HPV) infection and cervical cancer. The QUEST study will seek to recruit 8,666 females from across between the ages of 14 to 18.  Study sites are in British Columbia, Alberta, Quebec, Nova Scotia, and PEI.

Why is the study important? A 2 dose schedule instead of 3 doses of the HPV vaccine means girls would  have to endure fewer shots and the program could be extended to more people including boys.  Fewer doses means that middle and lower income countries are more likely to be able to afford the HPV vaccine program.

Who can participate? Females 14-18 years old who received either 2 or 3 doses of the HPV vaccine on the provincial schedule who are located in BC, Alberta, Quebec, PIE or Nova Scotia.

What does participation involve? Participating is quick and simple and can be done from anywhere.  Participants are enrolled in the study for 5 years and involves completing an online survey  once a year and providing self collected swabs twice a year

Study Results/Publication: 

Ogilvie GS, Naus M, Money DM, Dobson SR, Miller D, Krajden M, van Niekerk DJ, Coldman AJ. Reduction in cervical intraepithelial neoplasia in young women in British Columbia after introduction of the HPV vaccine: An ecological analysis. Int J Cancer. 2015;137(8):1931-7.

Krajden M, Cook D, Yu A, Chow R, Su Q, Mei W, McNeil S, Money D, Dionne M, Palefsky J, Karunakaran K, Kollmann T, Ogilvie G, Petric M, Dobson S. Assessment of HPV 16 and HPV 18 antibody responses by pseudovirus neutralization, Merck cLIA and Merck total IgG LIA immunoassays in a reduced dosage quadrivalent HPV vaccine trial. Vaccine. 2014;32(5):624-30.

Dobson SR, McNeil S, Dionne M, Dawar M, Ogilvie G, Krajden M, Sauvageau C, Scheifele DW, Kollmann TR, Halperin SA, Langley JM, Bettinger JA, Singer J, Money D, Miller D, Naus M, Marra F, Young E. Immunogenicity of 2 doses of HPV vaccine in younger adolescents vs 3 doses in young women: a randomized clinical trial. JAMA. 2013;309(17):1793-802.

Co-Investigators: Mel Krajden, Joel Singer, Marie Helene Mayrand, Shelly McNeil, Chantal Sauvageau, Vladmir Gilca, James Kellner, Deborah Money

Funded by: MSFHR, CIHR

Partners: UBC, CFRI, Dalhousie University, University of Calgary, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Quebec

Websites:

http://questhpvstudy.ca/contact-us/

http://questhpvstudy.ca/