Dr. Kathryn Howe Announced as 2020 Wylie Scholar

Vascular Cures is pleased to announce Kathryn Howe, MD PhdD FRCSC RPVI, Peter Munk Cardiac Centre, University Health Network, and the University of Toronto, as the 2020 Wylie Scholar. Her research work is on the “Role of endothelial extracellular vesicle microRNA release and paracrine cellular communication in vulnerable carotid atherosclerotic plaques: a new paradigm for stroke.”

Photo: Tim Fraser

Many people have atherosclerotic plaques in the carotid arteries but only some cause strokes – the problem is scientists don’t know which ones. Dr. Howe’s laboratory is trying to understand how cells within blood vessels communicate with one another in diseases such as atherosclerosis using secreted vesicles containing genetic code. The main goal of this research is to better understand these cellular communication signals in order to identify and treat plaques that are going to cause a problem so that strokes can be prevented.

The Wylie Scholar Program, now in its 24th year, awards one outstanding, young surgeon-scientist in North America with a $150,000 three-year career development grant for projects that combine active patient care with academic research. The award supports crucial research that enables them to compete for future research funding. Wylie Scholars become North America’s world-class vascular surgeon-scientists; many are now chiefs at major academic centers, prominent leaders in the field, and play a key role in our programs. Vascular Cures is a national non-profit advancing innovation in healthcare and research for diseases outside the heart. The program’s investment has generated a 28:1 return in subsequent funding for the scholars and their institutions.

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