The Beatrice Hunter Cancer Research Institute logo
  • Ben Johnston, BSc (Honours)


Dr. Craig McCormick

Program of Study:


Project Title:

Kaposi's sarcoma‐associated herpesvirus inhibits XBP1s to enhance autophagy‐mediated cell survival

Scholarships and/or Awards:

  • 2015 – 2018 CIHR Doctoral Award - Frederick Banting and Charles Best Canada Graduate Scholarships (CGS-D) 
  • 2014-2016 Cancer Research Training Program (CRTP) Traineeship Award   
  • 2014-2016 Scotia Scholarship (PhD level), Nova Scotia Health Research Foundation 
  • 2013 — 1st place award winner of Poster Presentation at IHRTP Graduate Student Research Day, Dalhousie University 
  • 2013-2014 Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council Alexander Graham Bell CGS Scholarship
  • 2012-2014 Izaak Walton Killam Predoctoral Scholarship, Dalhousie University
  • 2012 University Medal in Microbiology and Immunology, Dalhousie University
  • 2012 SIMS Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Honours Research (Microbiology and Immunology), Dalhousie University
  • 2011 1st place award winner of Poster Presentation at BHCRI 3rd Annual Cancer Research Conference. Halifax, NS
  • 2011 Norah Stephen Oncology Scholarship, administered by Beatrice Hunter Cancer Research Institute

Career Aspirations:

Ben’s passion for molecular biology and viral oncogenesis began during his fourth year of undergraduate studies. After completion of his PhD, Ben plans on pursuing a postdoctoral fellowship with a leading scientist in molecular oncology. Ultimately, Ben wants to live in the Maritimes and conduct cutting-edge research in the field of viral oncology. 


Dalhousie University


Corcoran, J.A., Johnston, B.P., and McCormick, C. 2015. Viral activation of MK2-hsp27-p115RhoGEF-RhoA signaling axis causes cytoskeletal rearrangements, p-body disruption and ARE-mRNA stabilization PLoS Pathog 11(1): e1004597. doi:10.1371/journal.ppat.1004597

Khaperskyy, D.A., Emara, M.M., Johnston, B.P., Anderson, P., Hatchette, T.F., and McCormick, C. 2014. Influenza A virus host shutoff disables antiviral stress-induced translation arrest PLoS Pathog 10(7): e1004217. doi:10.1371/journal.ppat.1004217

Corcoran, J.A., Khaperskyy, D.A., Johnston, B.P., King, C., Cyr, D.P., Olsthoorn, A., and McCormick, C. 2012.  Kaposi’s sarcoma-associated herpesvirus G protein-coupled receptor prevents AU-rich element- mediated mRNA decay J. Virol. 86: 8859-8871 

Site by: Spectacle Group