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  • Happy Holidays and a smooth start into the New Year 2023!

  • Welcome Mahsa Farjami to the lab, to Toronto, and to Canada. The long wait is over, and we are happy to have you here. Mahsa comes to us with a master’s in human Genetics from Mashhad University, Iran and will join the Hinz lab as a PhD candidate. Looking forward to many productive years. Well, turned to be less than a year :(.

  • What a year it has been - we can certainly use the break to recharge our batteries.

  • Congrats to Boris for being the new Director of the The Keenan Research Seminar Series. Please stay alert for upcoming talks. For a limited time, talks will be given live and broadcast in a hybrid format but then return to in-person only. 

  • Congrats and welcome to Alica Stegmaier who was just awarded with an undergraduate fellowship from MITACs. Alica comes from Reutlingen University (Germany) and will spend ~6 months research internship in our lab. Alica will work with Raquel on Myofibroblast Activation Stages, starting at the beginning of September. Welcome to the lab Alica!

  • Welcome to Kyle Lam who will start in our lab as a research student after Labor Day. Kyle is completing his undergraduate studies and just finished his stint in Richard Gilberts’s lab at the other end of the lab space. Plans are to have Kyle joining as a Master student in January 2023.

  • Welcome back, Kelly Choi on September 19! You know Kelly the undergraduate, learn to know Kelly the research assistant. Both, Kelly and Kyle will work with Donna on the mechanical regulation of MSCs and their effects on macrophages.

  • Farewell Ziv Roth! Our class clown is moving on from the Hinz lab and we wish him the best of luck.

  • Sadly, Covid or other bugs got the best of most of us resulting in a mini lab camping trip.

  • The iBest lunch on Toronto Island happened August 11. We attended as a lab. 

  • The lab has been (and will be) busy and successful with conference presentations over the Summer.

  • Congrats to Fereshteh Younesi for receiving a travel award from the Société Française de Biologie de la Matrice Extracellulaire (SFBME) to attend the ETRS meeting in September. See her featured in the society’s newsletter that you may find here:

  • Fereshteh Younesi is on a roll: Congrats for another travel award from the Stem Cell Network to attend the 2022 Till & McCulloch Meetings in Vancouver – worth three vials of anti-DNMT-1 antibody ;).

  • And congrats to Donna Son, for receiving ‘travel’ and registration support from the Unity Health Centralized Education Funding to attend the TERMIS meeting in Toronto. Thanks all for making these efforts to offset costs that we can now spend on reagents.


  • New Publication: Pakshir, P., Younesi, F., Wootton, K.-A., Battiston, K., Whitton, G., Ilagan, B., Louka, D., Statham, M., Mackey, G., Daley, A, Parrag, I., Naimark, W., and Hinz, B. (2022): Controlled release of low-molecular weight, polymer-free corticosteroid coatings suppresses fibrotic encapsulation of implanted medical devices. Biomaterials.

  • New Publication: Schuster, R., Younesi, F. (co-second), Ezzo, M. (co-second), and Hinz, B. (2022): The Role of Myofibroblasts in Physiological and Pathological Tissue Repair. Cold Spring Harbor Perspectives in Biology.

  • New Publication: Tavallaee, G., Lively, S., Rockel, J.S., Amanda Ali, S, Im, M.*, Sarda, C., Mitchell G.M., Rossomacha, E., Nakamura, S., Potla, P., Gabrail, S., Matelski, J., Ratneswaran, A., Perry, K., Gandhi, R., Hinz, B., Gandhi, R., Jurisica, I., and Kapoor, M. (2022): Contribution of MicroRNA-27b-3p to synovial fibrotic responses in knee osteoarthritis. Arthritis and Rheumatology.

  • Congrats to LTRR alumni Michelle Im for her co-authorship on a publication by Ghazaleh Tavallaee from Mohit Kapoor’s lab.

  • Make your work count: Citations of LTRR publications hit some important marks last month: >20,000 citations (h index 63) according to Scopus and 30,000 citations (h index 73) according to the ever so more industrious Google search engines.

  • Congrats to Fereshteh Younesi and LTRR alumni Pardis Pakshir for publishing their implant fibrosis story in Biomaterials. Not that impact factor matters at all but it’s a respectable IF 12.58!

  • And congrats for another publication of a review by Fereshteh Younesi, Maya Ezzo, and LTRR alumni Ronen Schuster in the Cold Spring Harbor Perspectives in Biology.

  • Congrats to Maya Ezzo for receiving another OGS award to support her PhD thesis work – strike three, but you are not out yet.

  • Congrats to Maya Ezzo to her appointment as one of two Public Relation Managers of the Canadian Connective Tissue Society (CCTS). Maya will be responsible for management of the CCTS web site content, Twitter, and Facebook.

  • Congrats to Kelly Choi on completing her undergraduate degree. Enjoy some well-deserved time off. Farewell for now – see you in September!

  • Welcome summer students Nicole Berezyuk and Jonathan Wong!

  • Welcome Amy (Dahea) Lee, the LTRR’s new lab technician. Yay!

  • Congrats to Justin Cowen for receiving the NSERC CGS-D grant to support his PhD stipend. Super accomplishment.

  • Congrats to Raquel Benitez for receiving a Keenan PDF Scholarship to support research conducted at St. Michael’s Hospital.

  • Congrats also to Michael Diao and Elham Karimizadeh, both for receiving Unity Health Post-Doc Fellowships.

  • Congrats to Fereshteh Younesi for receiving all her travel supports, course registrations, board memberships, etc. for her poster presentation in Germany and UBC course attendances. Fereshteh is now executive member of Training & Education Committee in the Stem Technology Network – your majesty!

  • Congratulations also to Nicole Berezyuk for receiving an NSERC undergraduate summer research award (USRA).

  • Congrats to Fereshteh Younesi for receiving a travel fellowship and registration waiver from the Stem Cell Network (SCN) to attend a 4-day Flow Cytometry Course. The course will be organized and held at the University of British Columbia, Biomedical Research Centre from March 1-4, 2022. Enjoy warm BC rain for a change, Fereshteh!

  • Congrats to Maya Ezzo for winning 3rd place for her poster at the Faculty of Dentistry Research Day event.

  • Welcome back Dr. Raquel Benitez and congrats for a successful PhD defense at! Raquel was a visiting student during her PhD and returns now as one of the new post-docs of the Hinz lab. Raquel comes with a shiny new PhD in Biomedicine under her belt from the Universidad de Granada, Spain. Raquel will study the differential regulation of ECM secretors and contractile functions in the myofibroblast activation cascade.

  • Welcome Dr. Elham Karimizadeh! Elham is coming from Harvard Medical School, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, MA, Boston, where she did a 2-year Postdoc in Rheumatology, Inflammation, and Immunity on Neutrophil protein functions. She will be studying perivascular myofibroblast precursors in fibrosis. Crossing fingers that the Visa come in soon and we can welcome you in Toronto – physically. (It actually took another year)

  • We are all getting ready for the big move on February 24 2022, to leave Dentistry and get the lab to St. Mike's Hospital.

  • Meet Boris at the Fast 5 of the Ontario Institute for Regenerative Medicine.

  • Congrats to Fereshteh Younesi for her successful application to becoming an executive member of Training & Education Committee in the Stem Technology Network.

  • Support Maya Ezzo in spirit when she is presenting her work at the Wound Healing Society meeting as the European Tissue Repair Society young investigator awardee.

  • So, this is it – farewell to the Faculty of Dentistry and welcome at St. Michael’s Hospital – let’s rock this place!

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