Discovery changed rules
for infant heart transplants
Heart transplants in babies are different from those in
adults, thanks to research by cardiologist Dr. Lori West. She
discovered that infants can receive a heart from a donor
with an incompatible blood type; in adults, donor and
recipient blood types must match. Because infant immune
systems can adapt to a mismatched donor, this widens the
pool of potential organs and decreases wait times. West’s
discovery has changed pediatric heart transplants globally.
Telehealth makes health-care access easier
Alberta has one of the largest and best integrated
telehealth networks in North America, with more than
900 videoconferencing sites. Telehealth makes it easier for
Albertans to use a wide range of specialized health services
such as psychiatric care without leaving their hometown.
They don’t have to take days off work to travel and they can
remain close to family and friends.
A traditional ingredient becomes
a popular cold medicine
One of Canada’s most popular over-the-counter cold and
flu medicines was developed in Alberta. Cold-FX® came
out of research at the University of Alberta on the active
ingredients in traditional herbal medicine. It’s derived
from the roots of the ginseng plant, one of the most valued
medicinal plants in the world.
Groundbreaking drug for hepatitis B
The first oral medicine to treat chronic hepatitis B infection
was developed by Dr. Lorne Tyrrell at the University of
Alberta. Lamivudine is a groundbreaking drug for patients
with this chronic viral infection—about 300 to 350 million
people worldwide. These people cannot clear the virus from
their body; they are at high risk of serious liver damage, as
well as death from cirrhosis of the liver and liver cancer.
Lamivudine stops the virus from replicating, which
minimizes liver damage.