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Dear BC Pain Research Network members,
Come check out our website to find out about network news and upcoming events; search our researcher directory to find potential research collaborators on your next grant; and be included in our directory when you fill out the short web-form. We hope the minimal time commitment in providing this information will be rewarded with outstanding networking, education, and collaboration opportunities with the ultimate goal of encouraging more and better research on pain and its management in our province.
We will post the following information you provide on the researcher directory:  Your name, job title, institution, website, email address, research area (CIHR themes) and your brief summary of research interests. 
Thank you for your participation.
Table of Contents
Feature Story: Pelvic and Vulvo-Vaginal Pain 
Kate Wahl, Endometriosis Pain Laboratory
Pelvic and vulvo-vaginal pain each affect approximately 15% of women. Both types of pain may range from mild to severe and may impact activities of daily living, psychological well-being, or intimate relationships. Women with pelvic or vulvo-vaginal pain can benefit from an interdisciplinary approach, which combines medical treatments with allied health care including physiotherapy and psychological treatments. 
There may be commonalities in pathophysiology between pelvic pain and vulvo-vaginal pain, and in fact, many women can have both types of pain. Therefore, there is synergistic potential for more integrated clinical services and research programs.   
On September 20th, 2018, the BC Women’s Centre for Pelvic Pain and Endometriosis and the BC Centre for Vulvar Health will host an interdisciplinary workshop bringing together clinicians, researchers, patients, and other stakeholders to develop a unified approach to pelvic and vulvo-vaginal pain in women. The workshop will focus on the major barriers to integrated care for women with both pelvic and vulvo-vaginal pain. In particular, there will be sessions focused on streamlining the referral process between the two centres, common data collection, appropriate definitions and measurement of sexual pain, and the development of a proposal for a joint grant application. 
Each workshop session will be facilitated by expert researchers and clinicians. We are very excited to welcome Dr. Candace Brown from University of Tennessee, who will share her experiences developing a patient-reported outcome measure of vulvo-vaginal pain and will help identify specific objectives for a grant application. Other facilitators include; Dr. Lori Brotto, Canada Research Chair in Women’s Sexual Health and author of Better Sex Through Mindfulness: How Women Can Cultivate Desire; Dr. Leslie Sadownik, Director of the BC Centre for Vulvar Health; and Dr. Paul Yong, Research Director at the BC Women's Centre for Pelvic Pain & Endometriosis.
Members of the BC Pain Research Network who are interested in attending the workshop can contact Research Coordinator Heather Noga at We welcome individuals with an interest in or experience with sexual pain, the psychometric measurement of pain, or interdisciplinary pain management. Please note that the capacity of this workshop is limited.
Summary of BC Pain Research Network Activities: 
Colloquia: We organized and co-sponsored two more colloquia; one with the UBC Department of Anesthesiology, Pharmacology, and Therapeutics, and the other with the UBC School of Nursing. On May 15, we had the pleasure of hearing Prof. Jason MacDougal from Dalhousie speak about his current research with the use of cannabidiol to manage joint pain and inflammation, as well as prevent the development of peripheral neuropathy and neuropathic pain in osteoarthritic patients. Then on June 4, we had the pleasure of hearing Prof. Bonnie Stevens from University of Toronto speak about an evidence-based, online and interactive tool, designed to guide teams of health professionals through a practice change process to improve infant pain assessment and management practice to decrease pain and its immediate and long-term consequences in infants. She also spoke about strategies to overcome the barriers to knowledge translation, and described the inter-professional pain education workshop they put on for pre-licensure trainees at U of T.  
Seminars: We held a Network Meet and Greet Seminar on May 31 with an opioid crisis theme, and had the pleasure to hear from Itai Bavli (OxyContin abuse: Ethical issues regarding post-market regulation by Health Canada), Tessa Cheng (Initiation trajectories of nonmedical prescription opioid use and related risks among people who use illegal drugs in Vancouver, Canada), and Christian Schütz (The link between Pain and Addiction within the context of the current opioid overdose crisis). We asked them to provide a short summary of their talks and have included them below:
Itai Bavli: PhD candidate in public health and social science at UBC, with current focus on pharmaceutical regulation, ethical regulatory standards and science communication. In January 1996, Health Canada (HC) approved OxyContin for the treatment of chronic pain. HC stated at the time of approval, in the drug’s product monograph, that OxyContin was safe and effective with low abuse potential. However, during the late 1990s and early 2000s, growth in the use of OxyContin was accompanied by widespread reports of addiction, abuse and deaths. In April 2006, more than 10 years after approval, HC changed the product monograph of the drug, strengthening the warning regarding the danger of abuse. We approach the ethics of this issue from the perspective of the argument from inductive risk. According to this argument, value judgments about how bad an error would be in a moral sense are relevant to deciding what should count as sufficient evidence for accepting a claim. We investigate the ethical obligation of HC to revise and change the original product monograph of OxyContin and examine how much evidence—and what kind of evidence—should be sufficient for the agency to act. We argue that HC’s response to inductive risks was not adequate. 
Tessa Cheng: PhD candidate in the Faculty of Health Sciences at SFU and trainee with the BC Centre on Substance Use. Previous research has identified an alarming trend of individuals initiating nonmedical prescription opioid use (NMPOU) and then later transitioning to using illegal drugs, such as heroin, cocaine, crack, and crystal methamphetamine. We investigated the prevalence of and risk factors associated with initiating NMPOU before and after illegal drugs using data from two linked cohort studies of street youth and adults who use illegal drugs in Vancouver, Canada. Overall, our results indicate that the transition patterns between NMPOU and illegal drugs were not meaningfully different with respect to socio-demographic, early life risk factors, substance use, income generation, or other socio-structural risk factors.
Dr. Christian Schütz: Associate professor in the UBC Department of Psychiatry Addictions Psychiatry program. Tendencies for over-prescription of opioids for pain, and negative consequences from this over-prescription, have been described as early as 1877. Data indicate, that negative consequences, such as addiction, abuse and overdosing are more common among pain patients than previously presumed. The direct impact of pain prescription on the overdose crisis though seems to be complex and seems to vary regionally. In BC, pain prescription does not seem to be the primary driver. Actually less than half of those experiencing an overdose have been prescribed any opioid for pain in the five years prior to the overdose. At the time of the overdose, less than 10% have an opioid prescription for pain and less than 10% are in opioid substitution treatment.  Provincial administrative data show that mental disorders are common, if not the rule, and closely associated with overdose.
UBC Committee Meeting: We held a meeting June 7, to discuss Pain Day, our campus wide outreach and community building event to be held in the fall.
Upcoming Events 
Meet and Greet Seminar Series: The next meet and greet will be a summer social gathering; a BBQ at Sydney and Ken’s home on July 13, from 5:00 pm till 8:00 pm. The address is 4310 Locarno Crescent, Vancouver, BC, V6R 1GE. All trainees and members are welcome and encouraged to mix, mingle and network. Please RSVP to Stacey ( in advance so we can anticipate numbers and provide adequate food and beverages.    
The next meet and greet seminar will be at the end of August and we are looking for volunteers to give 10 minute talks followed by feedback and open discussion. You may choose to present your current research or a journal article you would like to discuss. Please email Stacey if you are interested so she can set the date and reserve a room.   
Workshops: In addition to the pelvic and vulvo-vaginal pain workshop featured above, the BC Pain Research Network will be co-funding workshops on exploring the intersection between pain science and pain ethics, and pain assessment without verbal self-report this fall. More details will be coming soon, so please check our website for updates.
Funding Opportunities 
  • This funding opportunity is designed to allow health care practitioners and policy makers to gain evidence on the effectiveness of opioid crisis-related interventions
  • Address the pressing intervention-related evidence needs of knowledge users within one or more pillars of the Canadian Drugs and Substances Strategy (CDSS).
  • Increase the application of knowledge in health care and/or health services policy and practice related to one or more pillars of the CDSS, in order to address the most urgent elements of the opioid crisis, including opioid-related mortality rates.
  • Encourage the evaluation of interventions that consider sub-populations and/or the biological and social determinants of problematic opioid use
  • Up to $100,000 for 1 year
  • Registration deadline August 21, 2018
  • Application deadline: September 5, 2018
  • The ultimate goals of this call are to develop solutions for:
    Older adults experiencing periods of inactivity in order to inform transitions in care and/or improve their quality of life.
  • $200,000 for up to 18 months
  • Registration deadline: July 24, 2018
  • Application deadline: August 24, 2018
  • $7,000 to $25,000 for events, and up to $50,000 for other outreach activities; higher amounts for outreach activities may be considered if well justified
  • Application Deadlines (4 cycles/year): Aug 1,2018; Nov 1, 2018
  • Connection Grants support workshops, colloquiums, conferences, forums, summer institutes, or other events or outreach activities that facilitate:
  • disciplinary and/or interdisciplinary exchanges in the humanities and social sciences;
  • scholarly exchanges between those working in the social sciences and humanities and those working in other research fields;
  • intersectoral exchanges between academic researchers in the humanities and social sciences and researchers and practitioners from the public, private and/or not-for-profit sectors; and/or
  • international research collaboration and scholarly exchanges with researchers, students and non-academic partners from other countries.
  • The GGI program is specifically designed to promote and enhance Canada’s international innovation efforts. The program supports researchers who aim to commercialize technology by pursuing collaborative international research and development (R&D) opportunities through partnerships with key players in foreign markets. Eligible beneficiaries are Canadian innovators from small or medium size enterprises, universities and nongovernment research centres.
  • GGI provides assistance by contributing up to 75% of eligible expenses, up to a maximum of $75,000 for any approved project. Eligible expenses may include international and local travel, accommodation, meals, meeting costs, legal fees to support formalized partnerships, and other costs related to international collaboration.
  • Application Deadline: Continuous.
Other Canadian Funding competitions:
  • Participatory Action Research Grants — will support research that is co-led by community members and researchers to learn more about the root causes of pressing issues impacting the health of communities
  • Systems Change Grants – will support projects that take action to address the root causes of pressing issues by influencing the behaviours of populations, organizations, and institutions.
  • Up to $300,000 over three years
  • Letters of Intent due July 20, 2018
  • Proposal should: evaluate key health sector activities and interventions i.e. naloxone; overdose prevention services; acute overdose risk case management; and treatment and recovery
  • Proposal should: prioritize cultural safety and humility, as well as peer empowerment and employment as essential strategies for a supportive environment.
  • Proposal should include provision of a performance evaluation framework
  • The evaluation will be carried out over two years
  • Budget is $650,000 over two years
  • Proposal deadline: August 15, 2018
  • For innovative proposals (clinical or basic) that will lead to improvements in the prevention, diagnosis or therapy of Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis. Preference is given to proposals for work conducted with human samples or patients. Research using non-human material should lead to translational benefits to patients with IBD.
  • There is no fixed upper or lower limit of funding, but applicants should keep in mind that BMRP-CCFA has limited funds. Funding can be requested for up to two years, but grants generally are funded only one year at a time.
  • LOI is accepted all year round.
  • As part of the HEAL (Helping to End Addiction Long-term) Initiative, NIH will support research on how chronic pain develops and on new treatments to alleviate chronic pain.  HEAL will develop a data sharing collaborative, new biomarkers for pain, and a clinical trials network for testing new pain therapies
  • Notices of Intent to Publish FOAs for a Clinical Trials Network on Pain Research
  • The National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR) proposes to fund two Disability and Rehabilitation Research Projects of three years each to conduct research on opioid use disorder among people with disabilities
  • up to $500,000 each
  • Letter of Intent due June 28, 2018
  • Application due July 23, 2018
  • Major thrust should investigate cells or tissues from human pain patients and controls or from well-justified animal models of inflammatory or neuropathic pain.
  • Major thrust should also investigate one or more epigenomic and/or non-coding RNA mechanisms involved in gene expression regulation
  • Application due to National Institute on Drug Abuse July 17, 2018
  • Funded by the Mayday Fund and the Rita Allen Foundation
  • Up to two awards for $25,000 each to basic science pain research proposals
  • One award for $25,000 translational pain research proposals
  • Application due July 9, 2018
  • The Migraine Research Foundation (MRF) and the Association of Migraine Disorders (AMD) joint request for proposals
  • Particularly interested in translational projects and those related to migraine variants, childhood migraine, and chronic migraine.
  • A maximum of $50,000 for 1 year
  • Application Deadline: August 3, 2018
  • Cycle I: September 5, 2018
  • Cycle II: January 5, 2019
  • Cycle III: April 5, 2019
  • Seeks small business organizations to develop opioid and adjuvant drug combinations within a single dosage form for treatment of a pain condition.
  • Supports early phase clinical trials of mind and body approaches for conditions that have been identified by NCCAM as high priority research topics.
  • Cycle III due date: September 25, 2018
  • Seeks to address two specific mechanistic pathways via which psychosocial stress may modulate opioid use trajectories.
    • The first pathway is through its effects on cognitive and affective systems that are also altered in OUDs.
    • Second related pathway is substantial co-morbidity between OUD and stress-related affective disorders, including depression, anxiety and PTSD.
  • Cycle III due date: September 25, 2018
PA-18-376, PA-14-474, PA-14-384: Self-Management for Health in Chronic Conditions (R01, R15, R21)
  • Cycle III due date: September 25, 2018
PPA-15-141, PA-15-142, PA-15-143: International Research Collaborations on Drug Abuse and Addiction Research (R03, R01, R21)
  • Cycle III due date: September 25, 2018
  • Supports innovative research that will elucidate the mechanisms underlying migraine; expand our current knowledge of the role of genetic, physiological, biopsychosocial, and environmental influences in migraine susceptibility and progression; and explore new therapeutic targets and therapies for acute migraine management and longer-term prevention.
  • Cycle III due date: September 25, 2018
  • Promotes preclinical, translational, clinical and epidemiological research in pain medications use in children or in pregnant women to fill knowledge gaps in safe use of the pain medications in these special populations
  • Develops effective instruments or approaches to assess and evaluate maternal and child outcomes of pain medication treatments
  • Budgets are not limited but need to reflect the actual needs of the proposed project
  • Maximum of 5 years
  • Cycle III due date: September 25, 2018
  • US National Institutes of Health (NIH)
  • Cycle III due date:
  • 25 Sep 2018
  • Invites innovative research to characterize the consequences of psychosocial stress on affective/cognitive functioning and/or pain processing as it relates to opioid use disorder (OUD).
  • Encourages research that elucidates mechanisms of action and determinants of vulnerability and/or resilience by which psychosocial stress influence OUD trajectories. Research using basic or clinical approaches is appropriate.
  • Cycle III: due date October 16, 2018
  • The purpose of this Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) is to develop a technology/device that objectively indicates the presence and level of pain.
  • Cycle I due date: September 5, 2018
  • Cycle II due date: January 5, 2019
  • Cycle III due date: April 5, 2019
  • OnPAR is a Private Business Venture that partners with international agencies to provide ‘second-chance’ funding opportunities to high-scoring applications in biomedical fields. Several pharmaceuticals and biotech companies and other private biomedical agencies have joined OnPAR.
  • See the full list of partners here. OnPAR accepts abstracts from CIHR.
  • See the current list of Funding Members to get an idea of what they might be looking for. OnPAR is working to add additional Members.
  • There is no need to re-write your grant proposal. Once you submit your abstract and peer review scores, all abstracts are available for Funding Members to review. Applications and Summary Statement submission is by invitation only. OnPAR will accept the original abstract and the summary statement or review evaluations that you received from NIH or the reviewing organization.
  • Proposals that meet the criteria are accepted: 30th percentile for major disease areas, (i.e., Cancer, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Diabetes); 50th percentile for rare disease areas; promising non-percentiled)
  • OnPar has now expanded to include pain research projects.

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Pain BC Society
320 - 1508 West Broadway
Vancouver, BC V6J 1W8