Areas of Training

The Department of Oncology trains students to conduct basic and translational research into mechanisms of cancer causation, detection, imaging, diagnosis, treatment and prevention. The Department offers thesis-based M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in Oncology and is organized under two specializations: Cancer Sciences and Medical Physics.

Cancer Sciences

Laboratory-based basic and translational research training is provided primarily through the Divisions of Experimental Oncology and Palliative Care, but this specialization also serves students in the Divisions of Oncologic Imaging, Radiation Oncology, and Surgical Oncology.
Current potential supervisors and research areas:
Dr. Vickie Baracos  
Muscle atrophy in cancer associated cachexia

Dr. Kristi Baker
Anti-tumor immunity; genetic instability; colorectal cancer
Dr. Gordon Chan     
Mitotic cell cycle checkpoint and cancer
Dr. YangXin Fu
Signaling pathways and gene regulation in ovarian cancer and therapeutics
Dr. Katie Gagnon
Cyclotron production of isotopes for medicine (nuclear reactions, target design, target chemistry, etc.) 
Dr. Roseline Godbout  
Cancer as a developmental disease; retinoblastoma; brain tumors
Dr. Michael Hendzel  
Nuclear components; DNA damage response; chromatin-based epigenetic mechanisms
Dr. Mary Hitt  
Oncolytic viruses; adenovirus replication; gene regulation; RNA interference; gene therapy
Dr. Piyush Kumar 
Development of Molecular Theranostic (Therapy+Diagnostic) Agents For Cancer Diseases
Dr. John Lewis
Translational prostate cancer research; nanoparticles, novel therapeutics, in vivo imaging
Dr. David Murray
DNA repair in the response to anti-cancer agents; prediction of patient response to therapy
Dr. Manijeh Pasdar
Molecular mechanisms of adhesion-mediated signaling during cell growth and oncogenesis
Dr. Lynne Postovit
Environmental control of normal and cancer stem cell plasticity
Dr. Wilson Roa
Nono-carrier platforms for therapeutic applications; image guided radiotherapy
Dr. Jack Tuszynski
Computational biophysics; rational drug design; pharmacokinetics
Dr. Alan Underhill
Transcription factors in melanoma; gene regulation & epigenetics
Dr. Michael Weinfeld
Detection and repair of DNA damage
Dr. Frank Wuest
Probe development for molecular imaging of cancer
Dr. Kristi Baker
Anti-tumor immune responses and genetic instability in colorectal cancer

Medical Physics

Do you have a strong background in physics or engineering physics and mathematics? Are you interested in the application of physics to medicine? This graduate program has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Medical Physics Educational Programs (CAMPEP) since 2002.
Students are supervised by faculty in the division of Medical Physics.
Research interests are principally concentrated in four areas:
·         Multi-institutional clinical trials - In collaboration with the Division of Radiation Oncology, we were the first and are currently the only Canadian centre accruing patients to the RTOG prostate, lung and glioblastoma 3D-CRT clinical trials. 
·         Development of new radiotherapy treatment techniques such as image guided adaptive radiotherapy(IGAR), three-dimensional conformal radiotherapy, and intensity modulated radiotherapy.
·         Development of radiotherapy planning techniques such as inverse planning, dose calculation algorithms including Monte Carlo simulations and simulated annealing techniques, and dose verification using imaging techniques.
·         Commissioning, integration and development of new technologies (e.g. Tomotherapy and the Linac-MR Project) required for the clinical introduction of new techniques to aid in the improved treatment of cancer patients.


Read more about research in division of Medical Physics.