Science Leadership Council

The Science Leadership Council is comprised of scientific and other thought leaders.  It meets at least once each year and provides the Foundation guidance on directions and priorities for advancing stem cell science in Canada.

Dr. Janet Rossant, OC, PhD, FRS, FRSC, (Chair), President and Executive Director , Ontario Institute for Regenerative Medicine; Chief of Research Emeritus , Hospital for Sick Children

Dr. Rossant is an internationally recognized expert in developmental biology.  Her research focuses on stem cell development and cell differentiation in the developing embryo, important areas for the study of birth defects as well as regenerative medicine.  Dr. Rossant has also played a leadership role in setting Canada’s public policy regarding stem cell research.

Dr. Mick Bhatia, PhD, Director & Senior Scientist, Stem Cell and Cancer Research Institute, McMaster University

Dr. Bhatia is a recognized leader in human stem cell biology and applications. His research focuses on developing abundant sources of human hematopoietic progenitors, and using human stem cells to develop treatments to eliminate tumour reoccurrence.

Prof. Timothy A. Caulfield, Research Director, Health Law Institute, University of Alberta

Prof. Caulfield leads a number of interdisciplinary projects that explore the ethical, legal and health policy issues associated with stem cell research, genetics, patient safety, the prevention of chronic disease, obesity, the commercialization of research, complementary and alternative medicine, and access to health care. He is the editor of the Health Law Journal and Health Law Review and author of The Cure for Everything: Untangling the Twisted Messages about Health, Fitness and Happiness (Penguin Canada, 2011).

Dr. Connie Eaves, PhD, FRSC, Professor, University of British Columbia; Distinguished Scientist, Terry Fox Laboratory, BC Cancer Agency

Dr. Eaves is a leader in the field of hematopoietic stem cell biology whose work has led to advances in treatment for leukemia. Currently she is researching the unique properties of normal and cancerous stem cells in a variety of tissues to improve treatments for breast cancer as well as leukemia.

Dr. Gordon Keller, PhD, Director, McEwen Centre for Regenerative Medicine, University Health Network

Dr. Keller leads the McEwen Centre for Regenerative Medicine located at the University Health Network in Toronto.  Dr. Keller’s area of research focuses on regenerative medicine and understanding how pluripotent stem cells – both embryonic and induced pluripotent stem cells – give rise to specific cell types and tissues.

Prof. Bartha Maria Knoppers, OC, OQ, PhD, Director, Centre of Genomics and Policy, McGill University

Prof. Knoppers is a world-renowned bio-ethicist and holds the Canada Research Chair in Law and Medicine.  She is Chair of the Ethics Working Party of the International Stem Cell Forum, Co-Chair of the Sampling/Ethics, Legal and Social Implications Committee of the 1000 Genomes Project and a member of the Scientific Steering Committee of the International Cancer Genome Consortium.

Dr. Michael Rudnicki, OC, PhD, FRSCDirector, Sprott Centre for Stem Cell Research, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute

Dr. Rudnicki is Scientific Director of the Stem Cell Network.  His research is aimed at studying the function of genes involved in stem cell determination, proliferation and differentiation.  Dr. Rudnicki has done pioneering work in the area of muscle stem cells and his lab identified Pax7 as a transcription factor for the specification of satellite cells from progenitors present in adult tissues.

Dr. Guy Sauvageau, PhD, FRCPC, Scientific Director & CEO, Institute for Research in Immunology and Cancer, University of Montréal

Dr. Sauvageau is a researcher and clinical practitioner specializing in the transplant of bone-marrow-derived stem cells and in the study of the molecular mechanisms involved in their self-renewal.  Over the last 15 years, Dr. Sauvageau’s work has led to ground-breaking discoveries in understanding the production of hematopoietic stem cells.

Dr. Samuel Weiss, PhD, Director, Hotchkiss Brain Institute, University of Calgary

Dr. Weiss’ explorations into brain research have changed the fields of developmental neurobiology and neural regeneration.  In 2008, Dr. Weiss was the recipient of the Gairdner International Award for his work in neural stem cells.

Dr. Peter Zandstra, PhD, Professor, Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering, University of Toronto; Chief Scientific Officer, Centre for Commercialization of Regenerative Medicine

Dr. Zandstra’s research is focused on the generation of functional tissue from adult and embryonic stem cells and his lab is specifically focused on the growth of human blood stem cells and the generation of blood and cardiac cells from embryonic stem cells.  The long-term goal is to generate transplantable blood stem cells and repair damaged tissues, such as hearts, with stem or progenitor cells.