Photo of Ayesha Saleem

Assistant Professor


The main focus of my research program is to decipher the extracellular signalling as mediated through extracellular vesicles, that regulates the interplay between host tissue and imposed challenges. These challenges can be physiological (exercise, age), metabolic (cancer, obesity), environmental (smoke, pollutants) or developmental (prenatal).


  • Health and Physical Aspects of Aging OIA (KIN 2610 A01)
  • Physical, Health, and Wellness (KPER 1200)
  • Molecular Mechanisms of Exercise Physiology I (KPER 7100) and II (KPER 7102) – in development


  • 2016 - Postdoctoral Fellowship (Pediatrics) | McMaster University
  • 2013 - Ph.D. (Molecular, Cellular & Integrative Physiology) | York University
  • 2008 - M.Sc. (Kinesiology) | York University
  • 2005 - B.Sc. Honours (Kinesiology & Health Science) | York University

 Selected Publications

More publications and information can be found via Dr Saleem's ResearchGate profile.

Saleem A, Bourgeois JM, Khan MI, Safdar A, Azzopardi P, Rusiecki D, and Tarnopolsky MA. Exosome-mRNA therapy restores dystrophin expression and improves muscle function in mdx mice. Nature. Manuscript in revision. Manuscript ID: 2016-07-09752.

Nazli A*, Safdar A*, Saleem A, Akhtar M, Brady LI, Schwartzentruber J, FORGE Canada Consortium, and Tarnopolsky MA. A mutation in the TMEM65 gene results in mitochondrial myopathy with severe neurological manifestations. Eur J Hum Genet. 2017 Jun;25(6):744-751. *co-first authors.

Safdar A, Saleem A, and Tarnopolsky MA. The potential for endurance exercise-derived exosomes to treat metabolic diseases – Good things come in small packages. Nat Rev Endocrinol. 2016 Sep;12(9):504-17.

Clark-Matott J, Saleem A, Dai Y, Ma X, Safdar A, Tarnopolsky MA and Simon DK. Metabolomic analysis of exercise effects in the PolG mtDNA mutator mouse brain. Neurobiol Aging. 2015 Nov;36(11):2972-2983.

Saleem A, Safdar A, Kitaoka Y, Ma X, Marquez OS, Akhtar M, Suri R, Nazli A, Turnbull J and Tarnopolsky MA. Polymerase gamma mutator mice rely on increased glycolytic flux for energy production. Mitochondrion 2015 Mar;21:19-26.

Saleem A, Iqbal S, Zhang Y and Hood DA. Effect of p53 on mitochondrial morphology, mitophagy and assembly in skeletal muscle. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol. 2015 Feb 15;308(4):C319-29.

Saleem A, Carter HN, and Hood DA. p53 is necessary for the adaptive changes in the cellular milieu subsequent to an acute bout of endurance exercise. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol. 2014 Feb 1;306(3):C241-9.

Saleem A, and Hood DA. Exercise induces p53 translocation to the mitochondria and promotes p53-Tfam-mtDNA complex formation. J Physiol, 2013 Jul 15;591(Pt 14):3625-36.

Menzies KJ, Singh K, Saleem A, and Hood DA. Sirtuin 1-mediated effects of exercise and resveratrol on mitochondrial biogenesis. J Biol Chem. 2013 Mar 8;288(10):6968-79.

Saleem A, Carter HN, Iqbal S and Hood DA. Role of p53 Within the Regulatory Network Controlling Muscle Mitochondrial Biogenesis. Exerc Sport Sci Rev. 2011 Oct;39(4):199-205.

Saleem A, Adhihetty PJ, Hood DA. Role of p53 in mitochondrial biogenesis and apoptosis in skeletal muscle. Physiol Genomics. 2009 Mar 3;37(1):58-66.



120 Frank Kennedy Centre
University of Manitoba
Winnipeg, Manitoba  R3T 2N2
Dr. Saleem's Office: 204-474-7617
ResearchGate | Twitter: @asaleem_


Apply For Graduate Studies 

Please email me at ayesha.saleem@umanitoba.ca to discuss current available opportunities.

Please include the following in your email:

  • A cover letter describing why you want to work in the Saleem lab

  • Your CV

  • A copy of your transcript (unofficial is fine) that includes the cGPA

  • Details of any previous lab or research experience

  • An example of output from previous research experience (a poster or a paper)

  • A one-page document with 3 aims for prospective projects in my lab. Please include the rationale for each aim, and a few lines on methodology. It shouldn't be more than one-page max. It has to relate to and fit within my research goals