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Finger on the Pulse of Genomics: How Important are your Genes in Heart Health and Obesity?

June 18, 2018 @ 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

Join us for an evening talk open to everyone in the public! Leading scientists Dr. Liam Brunham and Dr. Susanne Clee will explore the role that genetics plays in important health conditions including heart disease, obesity and diabetes. In addition, Fred Hazen, a retired millwright from Kamloops, will tell his story of living with familial hypercholesterolemia, or FH, an inherited condition that leads to cardiovascular disease and how this condition has impacted his family. The talks will be followed by a moderated question and answer period open to everyone in attendance. 

Registration will open at 5:30PM – and the talk will begin sharply at 6:00PM. Please arrive early to avoid disturbing others in the audience. 

Genome BC is proud to organize science forums at no cost but we depend on your attendance. Please be sure you can attend before registering or contact us at info@genomebc.ca or 604. 675.1021 should you need to cancel. 

Bios of speakers:

Dr. Liam Brunham is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of British Columbia and a Principal Investigator at the UBC Centre for Heart and Lung Innovation. He is an attending physician at the Health Heart Program Prevention clinic at St. Paul’s hospital, one of the largest specialty lipid clinics in Canada. He is a Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) New Investigator and a Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research Scholar. In 2017, he was recognized as one of Canada’s Top 40 under 40. Dr. Brunham’s research focuses on genetic aspects of cholesterol levels, cardiovascular disease (CVD), and pharmacogenomics. Active projects in his laboratory include SAVE BC (www.savebc.ca), a long term study of families with early onset CVD; using genome-editing in human stem cells to study mechanisms of drug-induced cardiotoxicity; and studying the use of genetic testing for inherited dyslipidemias. His laboratory is funded by the CIHR, Heart & Stroke Foundation of Canada, Canada Foundation for Innovation, and Genome BC.

Dr. Susanne Clee obtained her BSc (Hons) in biochemistry from SFU. For her graduate work at UBC she went on to study genetic factors affecting cholesterol and triglyceride levels and their impact on cardiovascular disease. This led her to appreciate how many metabolic diseases seem to share common factors. For her postdoctoral training, she joined a lab at the University of Wisconsin-Madison to discover genetic factors affecting obesity and type 2 diabetes. Dr. Clee returned to Vancouver and UBC in 2007 to establish her own laboratory. Here, her work has continued to focus on the discovery of genetic factors affecting metabolic disease risk including obesity, type 2 diabetes, and metabolism.

Fred Hazen lives in Kamloops, BC where he worked as a millwright for 35 years. Fred recently retired two years ago and is enjoying his retirement with his wife, Joanne. Fred is active and participates in a variety of activities including curling and traveling in winter and spending his summers motorcycling, fishing, and working on friends’ cars. He also spends his time volunteering with the Heart and Stroke Foundation. 

Fred is also one in 1617 British Columbians on a BC based Registry of people who have high cholesterol levels caused by their genetic makeup rather than external forces such as a fatty diet- this condition is known as familial hypercholesterolemia, or FH. FH affects approximately one in 500 Canadians. Fred has two sons, now 34 years old and 36 years old, that have both been tested for FH and are cleared of having the condition. 


Genome British Columbia
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Kay Meek Centre
1700 Mathers Ave, West Vancouver, BC V7V 2G7
West Vancouver, V7V 2G7 CA
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