Darcy WearDarcy Wear presents his poster at the Natural Health Products Research Society of Canada.

Student research on natural health products wins national notice

Two students from professor Siyaram Pandey’s biochemistry lab won awards at the annual meeting of the Natural Health Products Research Society of Canada, May 27 in Edmonton.

Caleb Vegh, a doctoral candidate in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, received a travel award as well as a second-place prize for his poster presentation. Darcy Wear, a third-year in health and biomedical science, also received a travel award, and finished second out of 11 participants in a “Three Minute Thesis” style competition.

“We are very proud of both these students,” Dr. Pandey says. “They are wonderful representatives of the University of Windsor and our science programs in particular.”

Vegh says he has been able to flourish as a researcher since joining Pandey’s lab.

“Dr. Pandey really helps in stimulating our research,” says Vegh. “He is always providing guidance and support, and really pushes us to do our best.”

He calls the conference perhaps the most exciting time of the year: “We got to interact with other academics in the field, the industry, and even the government sector.”

Wear says he found the experience extremely rewarding.

“It’s always exciting to be recognized for our hard work as it shows that what we’re doing really matters,” says Wear.

Wear’s presentation was titled Autophagy Resumption by Ubisol-Q10 Ameliorates Alzheimer’s Disease Symptoms and Pathologies; Vegh’s poster explored Neuroprotective and Anti-inflammatory Effects of Combined Treatment with Ubisol-Q10 and Ashwagandha Root Extract in a Paraquat Induced Rat Model of Parkinson’s Disease.

The research in Pandey’s lab is done in collaboration with Jerome Cohen from the Department of Psychology, and is additionally funded by the Szecsei Family Donation, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), Next Remedies, and the Parkinson Society.

—Darko Milenkovic