Graduate Defences


Please note that due to Covid-19 pandemic restrictions, final oral examinations will be conducted online (via MS Teams). 

Tips for Remote Thesis Defences and Oral Qualifying Exams   While observers are very welcome, they must follow all instructions given by the exam chair, including the tips listed here.  Please join the meeting via the link, found in the email announcement to the department.  Keep your microphone muted unless invited to speak by exam chair.  Join with your name or a static profile picture to cut down on visual distractions.  Do not send the student any messages in the chat during the defence.  If appropriate, the exam chair will invite questions from the audience after the oral presentation is done.  Leave the meeting, as appropriate, when instructed by the exam chair.  Thank you for your cooperation.  


  • Radford, Joseph - MSC.MCB - February 19, 2021 at 1:30 p.m.
    (Co-Advisors:  Dr. Susan Glasauer and Dr. Lucy Mutharia)
    Influence of temperature cycling and ethanol amendment on arsenic mobility in a contaminated northern wetland 
  • Petruccelli, Victoria - MSC.MCB - February 16, 2021 at 9:30 a.m.
    (Co-Advisors:  Dr. Anthony Clarke and Dr. Chris Whitfield)
    Expression of peptidoglycan O-Acetyltransferase A from Neisseria gonorrhoeae
  • Razzaq, Iqra - MSC.MCB - February 3, 2021 at 1:30 p.m.
    (Advisor:  Dr. Rebecca Shapiro)
    Analyzing the roles of the essential gene TRA1 and the novel extracellular vesicle EVP1 in regulating morphogenesis and the antifungal drug resistance response in the opportunistic fungal pathogen Candida albicans
  • Alibabai, Layla - MSC.MCB - January 13, 2021 at 1:30 p.m.
    (Advisor:  Dr. Marc Coppolino)
    STIP1 a novel SNARE complex interactor, and its role in tumour cell migration and invasion 
  • Carswell, Matthew - MSC.MCB - January 8, 2021 at 9:30 a.m.
    (Advisor:  Dr. Mike Emes)
    A regulatory role for 14-3-3 proteins in the starch biosynthetic pathway of Zea mays
  • MacNeill, Gregory - PHD.MCB - January 6, 2021 at 9:30 a.m.
    (Co-Advisors:  Dr. Mike Emes and Dr. Ian Tetlow)
    Post-translational regulation of starch branching enzyme 2.2 from Arabidopsis thaliana


  • Wismer, Sarah - MSC.MCB - December 18, 2020 at 9;30 a.m.
    (Advisor:  Dr. Nina Jones)
    Investigation of the role of Nck in breast cancer cell invasion and invadopodia formation and its interaction with ADAM19
  • Hoff, Amy - MSC.MCB - December 7, 2020 at 9:30 a.m.
    (Co-Advisors:  Dr. David Josephy and Dr. Marc Coppolino)
    Possible binding partners of glutathione transferase theta 1
  • Minow, Mark - PHD.MCB - November 12, 2020 at 1:30 p.m.
    (Advisor:  Dr. Joseph Colasanti)
    Molecular genetic investigation into the processes underlying transitions in plant gene expression
  • Costain, Cecily - MSC.MCB - October 6, 2020 at 9:30 a.m.
    (Advisor:  Dr. Mike Emes)
    Effects of altered starch metabolism on growth and development of Arabidopsis thaliana 
  • Singh, Karamjeet - PHD.MCB - September 8, 2020 at 1:30 p.m.
    (Advisor:  Dr. Steffen Graether)
    Structural and biochemical investigation into Arabidopsis thaliana LEA3 proteins
  • Grafinger, Olivia - PHD.MCB - September 1, 2020 at 1:30 p.m.
    (Advisor:  Dr. Marc Coppolino)
    The role of beta-1 integrin signaling in regulating the phosphorylation and recycling of MT1-MMP at invadopodia
  • Rosiana, Sierra - MSC.MCB - August 26, 2020 at 9:30 a.m.
    (Advisor:  Dr. Rebecca Shapiro) 
    The role of fungal adhesins in mediating morphogenesis and virulence in Candida albicans
  • Pladwig, Samanta - MSC.MCB - August 25, 2020 at 9:30 am
    (Advisor:  Dr. Mark Baker)
    Characterization of human BRCA2 truncations on Rad51 levels and homology directed repair in mammalian cells  
  • Seidel, Laura - MSC.MCB - August 20, 2020 at 9:30 a.m.
    (Co-Advisors:  Dr. Cezar Khursigara and Dr. Matthew Kimber)
    Investigating the structure of the Escherichia coli divisome protein FtsK via covariance analysis
  • Sanderson, Victoria - MSC.MCB - June 2, 2020
    (Co-Advisors:  Dr. Melanie Wills and Dr. Cezar Khursigara)
    Improving Lyme disease direct detection: Identification of a novel method to enrich for Borrelia in blood, and comparing surveys and serology in a chronically ill patient cohort
  • Turner, Madison - MSC.MCB - May 14, 2020
    (Co-Advisors:  Dr. Rod Merrill and Dr. Ernesto Guzman)
    Characterization of virulence factors targeting Apis mellifera: Varroa Toxic Protein and LarvinA
  • Brumwell, Andrea - PHD.MCB - May 14, 2020
    (Advisor:  Dr. Jim Uniacke)
    Maiden exploration into hypoxic regulation of human ribosomal proteins
  • Brasher, Megan - PHD.MCB - April 29, 2020
    (Advisor:  Dr. Marc Coppolino)
    The regulation of Syntaxin4 and VAMP2 is required for invadopodium formation and extracellular matrix invasion in tumor cells
  • Jones, Carys - PHD.MCB - April 21, 2020
    (Co-Advisors:  Drs. Anthony Clarke and Cezar Khursigara)
    Structure, Function, and Inhibition of Peptidoglycan O-Acetyltransferase A from Staphylococcus aureus|
  • Brott, Julia - MSC.MCB - April 15, 2020
    (Advisor:  Dr. John Vessey)
    The RNA-binding protein heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein K is responsible for regulating the fate decisions of neural precursor cells of the developing cerebral cortex
  • Ojehomon, Matiyo - MSC.MCB - April 9, 2020
    (Advisor:  Dr. John Dawson)
    Insertional vs targeted mutagenesis in the development of zebrafish as an in vivo model for cardiomyopathy
  • Hallam, Ryan - MSC.MCB - April 7, 2020 
    (Advisor:  Dr. Scott Ryan)
    Alpha-synuclein fibrils impair calcium flux in cortical neurons through aberrant nitric oxide-mediated inhibition of NMDA receptor function
  • Barton, Kiah - PHD.MCB - April 3, 2020
    (Advisor:  Dr. Jaideep Mathur)
    Investigations on the influence of cellular sugar and endoplasmic reticulum dynamics on plastid pleomorphy in Arabidopsis thaliana
  • Teng, Zi (Grace) - MSC.MCB - March 24, 2020
    (Advisor:  Dr. John Dawson)
    The dark side of actin:  Characterization of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy linked S271F ACTC variant and dilated cardiomyopathy linked T126I ACTC variant
  • Garnier, Nicole - MSC.MCB - March 12, 2020
    (Advisor:  Dr. Cezar Khursigara)
    Examining the intraspecific interactions in mixed-strain biofilms containing the prairie epidemic strain and unique clinical Pseudomonas aeruginosa isolates
  • Harris, Sharlaine - MSC.MCB - February 20, 2020
    (Advisor:  Dr. Lucy Mutharia)
    Investigation of surface structure diversity of isolates of Flavobacterium branchiophilum from Ontario, Canada
  • Rasmussen, Duncan - MSC.MCB - January 15, 2020
    (Advisor:  Dr. Melissa Perreault)
    Effect of ketamine treatment on neuronal oscillatory activity in the nucleus accumbens and hippocampus in an animal model of treatment-resistant depression
  • Petrie, Laurenne - MSC.MCB - December 17, 2019
    (Advisor:  Dr. Georgina Cox)
    Construction of a genetic host cell adhesion network in Staphylococcus aureus identifies a novel role for autolysin


  • Prioti, Anonna - MSC.MCB - December 13, 2019
    (Co-Advisors:  Dr. George Harauz, Dr. Steffen Graether)
    Mapping intramolecular distances of 18.5-kDa myelin basic protein variants in membrane-mimetic solvents by Fluorescence (Förster) Resonance Energy Transfer
  • Tilak, Manali - PHD.MCB - December 12, 2019
    (Advisor:  Dr. Nina Jones)
    A comprehensive proteomic and transcriptomic approach to understand novel features of adaptor protein ShcD
  • Sidhu, Navneet - PHD.MCB - December 9, 2019
    (Advisor:  Dr. John Dawson)
    ADPr-actin trimer is a short F-actin oligomer that binds selectively to F-actin binding proteins
  • Roscow, Olivia - MSC.MCB - November 27, 2019
    (Advisor:  Dr. Baozhong Meng)
    Development of a full-length infectious clone of Grapevine rupestris stem pitting-associated virus strain Syrah and production of GFP-tagged and VIGS vectors for Vitis vinifera
  • Randall, Connor - MSC.MCB - November 26, 2019
    (Advisor:  Dr. Marc Coppolino)
    The role of Syntaxin-4 N-terminal peptide interaction with Munc18c in cell-matrix adhesion and front-rear polarity during cell migration
  • Yen, Sandi - PHD.MCB - September 25, 2019
    (Co-Advisors:  Dr. Emma Allen-Vercoe and Dr. Marc Aucoin)
    Impact of parenteral antibiotic therapy on microbial and metabolic relationships of the preterm gut microbiome as in vitro community cultures
  • Khan, Haider - MSC.MCB - September 11, 2019
    (Advisor:  Dr. Terry Van Raay)
    Investigation of the Role of Nkd1 in Wnt Signaling
  • Worthington, Paisley - MSC.BIOP - August 30,2029
    (Advisor:  Dr. John Dawson)
    Using existing assessments to track longitudinal development of students' problem solving skills
  • Rowlands, Hollie - PHD.MCB - August 30, 2019
    (Advisor:  Dr. Joseph Yankulov)
    Nucleosome assembly pathways, Rrm3p and phosphorylation of CAF-I contribute to the maintenance of silent chromatin at the FLO genes in Saccharomyces cerevisiae
  • Tempelhagen, Laura - MSC.MCB - May 17, 2019
    (Advisors:  J. Wood and S. Seah)
    Increased ubiquinone content confers respiratory protection to Escherichia coli under osmotic stress
  • Mann, Evan - PHD.MCB - May 9, 2019
    (Advisor:  C. Whitfield)
    Export of bacterial O-antigen polysaccharides by ATP-binding cassette transporters
  • Vatta, Maritza - MSC.MCB - May 9, 2019
    (Advisor:  R. Merrill)
    Application of plant extracts as antimicrobials against Streptomyces scabies and characterization of the DNA-binding motif in Scabin toxin
  • Chun, Joshua - MSC.MCB - May 8, 2019
    (Advisor:  A. Clarke)
    Investigating the interaction between lytic transglycosylases and Ivyp1 & Ivyp2 in Pseudomonas aeruginosa
  • Mehrpouyan, Sahar - PHD.MCB - May 6, 2019
    (Co-Advisors:  M. Emes / I. Tetlow)
    Post-translational regulation of starch synthase IIA, a key enzyme of starch biosynthesis in maize endosperm
  • Mallette, Evan - PHD.MCB - May 1, 2019
    (Advisor:  M. Kimber)
    Structural and functional characterization of the aminoacetone utilization microcompartment from Mycobacterium smegmatis MC2 155
  • McLaughlin, Michael (Shayne) - MSC.MCB - April 24, 2019
    (Advisor:  A. Bendall)
    Investigating Dlx and Zbed1 protein interactions during cell cycle progression
  • Dutta, Nikkita - MSC.MCB - April 17, 2019
    (Advisor:  N. Jones)
    Investigation of Dok1 and Dok2 as novel modulators of focal adhesion dynamics in kidney podocytes
  • Boddington, Kelly - PHD.MCB - April 12, 2019
    (Advisor:  S. Graether)
    The role of a Vitis riparia dehydrin in protecting DNA from oxidative stress
  • Larson, Shayla - MSC.MCB - April 9, 2019
    (Advisors:  R. Lu & R. Bergeron)
    Identification of genetic markers for stress responsiveness and meat quality in Canadian Yorkshire pigs
  • Demelo, Mitchele - MSC.MCB - April 5, 2019
    (Advisor:  C. Khursigara)
    Identification of a novel interaction between cell division proteins FtsK and MinD in Eschericia coli
  • Tremblay, Olivier - MSC.MCB - March 29, 2019
    (Advisor:  R. Merrill)
    Vorin and Garvin are novel bacterial mono-ADP-ribosyltransferase toxins
  • Sandhu, Love - MSC.MCB - February 5, 2019
    (Advisor:  J. Dawson)
    Characterization of cardiac actin gene editing in zebrafish using CRISPR-Cas9 technology