Home > Awards and Recognition > Gutsy research: UCalgary GI doctor receives international award

Gutsy research: UCalgary GI doctor receives international award

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By Laurie Wang

Dr. Martin Storr

Dr. Martin Storr

Dr. Martin Storr loves your guts. Well, he certainly likes to study them.

Winning the Junior Investigator Research Award from the International Foundation for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders (IFFGD), the Faculty of Medicine clinician-scientist was thrilled when he found out.

“I opened a bottle!” Storr smiles.

The IFFGD recognizes active investigators who have a record of research interest in basic mechanisms or clinical aspects of functional gastrointestinal and motility disorders. The foundation honors young scientists who have done strong translational research, taking the basic science at the lab bench to the patient’s bedside.

“To me, the gut is central to the body. We start with the gut in the morning at the washroom and the breakfast and we end with a gut feeling at night,” he says. “That’s why it’s always attracted me.”

To date, Storr has published 77 peer-reviewed studies in his field.

“I study how the gut functions and how it protects itself. I’m looking specifically at the regulatory role of the endocannabinoid and endoopioid systems,” explains Storr, an associate professor in the Division of Gastroenterology.

Both the endocannabinoid and endoopioid systems are regulatory systems in our bodies that control gastrointestinal function. Storr is interested in developing potential therapeutics that target these systems in hopes of battling functional gastrointestinal disorders.

“Functional gastrointestinal disorders are associated with numerous symptoms like nausea, vomiting, bloating, difficulties swallowing, abdominal discomfort and pain, as well as altered bowel habits,” he says.

Storr thanks the people at UCalgary for supporting his ideas, protecting his time and encouraging his academic endeavours.

“I came here as a full-time member in 2007 because in this position, I have enough protected time to plan and perform sophisticated research and to develop concepts and strategic plans for my translational approaches,” he says. “I used to have to wait until nighttime to think academic thoughts, but now, I get to think about my studies during the day and I have time to do the research I like.”

Martin Storr will receive his award at the 8th International Symposium on Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in mid April.

About the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Calgary

The U of C’s Faculty of Medicine is a national leader in health research with an international reputation for excellence and innovation in health care research, education and delivery. Through its educational programs, the Faculty of Medicine trains the physicians and scientists who will lead the next generation of health practitioners. Through its clinical work, continuing medical education programs, and close relationship with the Calgary Health Region, the Faculty of Medicine moves new treatments and diagnostic techniques from the laboratory bench to the hospital bedside efficiently and effectively, improving patient care.

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  1. Pop
    March 27, 2009 at 8:27 am


    The Storr family!

  2. Suzanne
    March 27, 2009 at 5:51 pm

    Congratulations Dr. Storr. You are providing such important advancements and medical care to people who really need it. The gut has a huge impact on our sense of wellbeing. I am a medical transcriptionist at the Faculty of Medicine and I transcribe some of your reports. Keep up the good work!

    Suzanne Dougherty.

  3. Debashis Chowdhury
    July 30, 2009 at 3:46 am

    Congratulations Dr. Storr!
    I am a gastroenterologist and I am practicing in Bangladesh.
    I completely agree with you when you say “To me, the gut is central to the body. We start with the gut in the morning at the washroom and the breakfast and we end with a gut feeling at night.”
    I hope someday gastroenterologists like you will be able to find remedies for battling functional gastrointestinal disorders.
    I have special interest in dyspepsia and other gastrointestinal motility disorders. I am an international member of ACG and I am very happy because I often get good wishes and advice from Prof. Gerald Holtmann, Prof. N J tally and many other renowned gastroenterologists regarding my carrier and management of my patients.
    I am also interested at the regulatory role of the various systems regulating GI motility.
    I wish you a very happy and prosperous life.
    Dr. Debashis Chowdhury; MBBS, MD,
    Assistant Professor, Gastroenterology,
    Sylhet MAG Osmani Medical College,
    Sylhet-3100, Bangladesh.

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