Learn about the QAQCC’s current student trainees:
Philip Wiredo Addo
I am a Schulich Fellowship award recipient pursuing the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) program in Bioresource Engineering at McGill University. My research focuses on the optimization of postharvest technologies for medicinal plants; cannabis and hops under the supervision of Prof. Mark Lefsrud. I had the opportunity to work in summer 2018 as a research intern in the Biomass Production Lab using NMR technology to analyse lipids in peas. My interest in food and plant engineering evolved from my desire to contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals; zero hunger and good health and well-being. In a few years, I envisage myself being part of the food industry, as a professional engineer. I want to acquire the knowledge to identify, analyse, and find solutions to curb the challenges in the industry and develop new or improved packages and processing systems.
Kelly is a PhD student with a keen interest in novel encapsulation systems for the delivery of cannabinoid compounds. She received her bachelor’s degree in Dietetics and Human nutrition in 2012, and after working in the community and food industry settings for several years, she returned to McGill to focus on her analytical skills and conduct research. Her current project involves the enzymatic modification of cannabinoid compounds to improve their compatibility with food systems and the entrapment of cannabinoids within various encapsulation systems to improve their efficacy and gastrointestinal bioavailability. She has always been passionate about all kinds of food, and she sees the cannabis industry as a unique and exciting new area to combine her expertise in high quality food products, nutraceutical chemistry and human metabolism.
Alec Roger Vista
Alec is a MSc student in Biological Engineering at the University of Saskatchewan. He’s also an Engineer-in-Training with The Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta (APEGA). While taking up his BSc in Chemical Engineering at the University of the Philippines Visayas, he interned at Dole Philippines Inc. where he trained for Standard Operating Procedures (SOP), Good Manufacturing Processes (GMP), and Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP), applied in an agri-industrial plant environment. He also has a background in research and development, working on the production of spray-dried food grade Carrageenan.
His current research will focus on the post-harvest processing, storage and quality of cannabis, closely looking into the existing practices used in the Cannabis industry.
Vincent Desaulniers Brousseau
Vincent is a PhD candidate in the Biomass Production Laboratory at McGill University under the supervision of Dr. Lefsrud. His education includes two BSc, one in Biological Sciences and the other in Agroenvironmental Sciences. he also has an MSc. in Molecular and Cellular Medicine. He is a trained agrologist and has a solid knowledge of biological systems. He hopes that biopharmaceuticals can be produced sustainably.
Vincent studies nutrient tracking in medicinal cannabis production. Using state-of-the-art specific ion monitoring, he aspires to make the next generation of hydroponic systems more sustainable than ever before. Like in other sectors, sustainable food, fibre, and nutraceutical production lies in reusing what is usually discarded as waste. His research will help make medical cannabis production environmentally-friendly, as well as enabling growers with an nutrition index for optimal cannabinoid fertilization.
I am pursuing a PhD in Biology at the University of Ottawa under the supervision of Dr. Cory Harris. I completed a BSc in Biomedical Science (Cellular and Molecular Medicine) and a MSc in Interdisciplinary Health Science, both at the University of Ottawa. I have an interest in natural health products, herbal medicines, drug metabolism, and food biochemistry. Currently, I am investigating the metabolism of cannabis. Specifically, I am researching the metabolism of cannabinoids by the CYP450 family of liver enzymes and the digestion and absorption of cannabinoids in edible products. I am looking forward to participating in the QAQCC program to help answer some of the questions about the safety of cannabis and cannabis edible products and better inform the Canadian public, while developing my own professional skills in a growing yet underexplored area of study.
Mohannad Mahmoud a Ph.D. student in his second year at McGill University. He holds two MScs in field crops and molecular biology. His current research is focused on the identification and development of potential bio-stimulants and bio-controls, with an emphasis on the cannabis fungal pathogens, in addition to investigating in-depth microbe-microbe interactions. He is also interested in cannabis quality assurance, mainly controlling biological hazards that may present in cannabis products.
Josephine Payment is currently a Biology Masters Student at the University of Ottawa. She recently graduated from the University of Manitoba with a Bachelor of Science Honours Co-Op, with a major in Genetics. Her interests revolve around plant growth under stress conditions. Her research experience includes work on Aphanomyces euteiches with Agriculture and Agrifood Canada, as well as work on plant growth and development using bacterial fertilizers and butterfly phylogeny at the University of Manitoba. Her current project involves working with model plant systems to determine effects of stress conditions on seedlings
I completed my undergraduate degree in Biology at Queen’s University (2015-2020), carrying out an honours thesis with the Jacqueline Monaghan Lab. During my degree, I completed an internship at PnuVax Biopharmaceuticals SL (2018-2019) as a microbiology intern with the QC Microbiology team. I am currently a MSc student in the Department of Plant Science at McGill University, developing a co-supervisory project with Dr. Anja Geitmann and Dr. Donald Smith to investigate the impact of the cannabis phytomicrobiome on trichome development. My goal is to ultimately help shape protocols with Health Canada that are aimed at creating a safe, environmentally friendly cannabis industry in Canada.
In my spare time I am a reservist with the Canadian Army Reserves as a Human Resources Administrator. I also enjoy sewing, photography, painting, baking, rock climbing, and hiking when possible.