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Pathology and Experimental Medicine (MSc) Collaborative)

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The Faculty of Medicine offers graduate programs leading to master’s (MSc) and doctoral (PhD) degrees in several disciplines.

The objective of the Pathology and Experimental Medicine collaborative program is to provide graduate students with the knowledge and skills to examine the basic mechanisms of disease pathology, and to develop new strategies for prevention and treatment. The degree awarded specifies the primary program and indicates “specialization: Pathology and Experimental Medicine.”

The program operates within the framework of the general regulations of the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies (FGPS), which are posted on the FGPS website.

Participating Programs

The primary participating programs are:

  • The MSc in Cellular and Molecular Medicine of the Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine.
  • The MSc in Biochemistry of the Department of Biochemistry, Microbiology and Immunology.
  • The MSc in Microbiology and Immunology of the Department of Biochemistry, Microbiology and Immunology.
  • The MSc in Neuroscience of the Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine.
Search all research fields for members of the teaching staff

The professors included in the list below are members of the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies. This means that they are authorized to supervise or co-supervise theses.




ADDISON, Christina, Cross-appointment
Angiogenisis; cancer; extracellular matrix

BELL, John, Cross-appointment
Ocolytic viruses; protein translation; cancer therapeutics

CHEN, HSIAO-HUEI, Cross-appointment
Establish a paradigm for the characterization of transcriptional control of neural differentiation and synapse specification during development

DE BOLD, Adolfo, Cross-appointment
1. Transcriptional and posttranscriptional control of natriuretic peptide production (ANF, BNP) by the endocrine heart, protein trafficking and sorting of cardiac polypeptide hormones; 2. endocrinology of congestive heart failure w/ ref. to cytokines, 3. aldosterone production by the heart and; 4. development of monoclonal antibodies and other activities related to the production of tests for diagnosis of cardiac disease

DIMITROULAKOS, Jim, Cross-appointment
Experimental therapeutics; cancer; targeted therapy

GRAY, Douglas, Cross-appointment
Proteins inside cells are normally degraded through elaborate and highly regulated cellular machinery; and failure to do so underlies many disease states, we are studying the role of protein degradation in neurodegenerative diseases; lung cancer and aging; these conditions are studied using transgenic mice

KUMAR, Ashok, Cross-appointment
HIV; CD44; cytokines; IL-10; IL-12; TNF-alpha; monocytic cells; signal transduction

KUROSKI DE BOLD, Mercedes L, Cross-appointment

LAGACE, Thomas, Cross-appointment
Atherosclerosis, Genetics and Cell Biology; Lipoprotein Receptor Biology

LANGLOIS, Marc-André, Assistant Professor

LI, Qiao, Assistant Professor
Transcriptional regulation; the 26S proteasome pathway; acetylation; protein degradation; ubiquitination; chromatin remodeling; nuclear hormone receptor; gene expression

LORIMER, Ian A.J., Cross-appointment
Cancer therapeutics targeting a mutant oncogenic EGF receptor

MCBURNEY, Michael, Cross-appointment
Molecular basis of gene silencing in mammalian cells

MCKAY, Bruce, Cross-appointment
Work in the lab is focused on understanding the cellular responses to DNA damage

MILNE, Ross, Cross-appointment
Features of the LDL receptor and of lipoproteins that allow them to specifically recognize each other and interact

PRATT, Christine, Associate Professor
Retinoids and breast cancer

SABOURIN, Luc, Cross-appointment
Areas of plasticity and cellular remodeling; as well as in Myotonic Dystrophy (DM)

SCHLOSSMACHER., Micheal G., Cross-appointment

SPARKS, Daniel, Cross-appointment
The role of high density lipoprotein charge and structure in the metabolism of cholesterol

SUURONEN, Erik, Cross-appointment
The use of tissue engineering methods to improve the understanding of cardiac tissue repair and regeneration and to develop tissue engineered strategies for the treatment of cardiac injury and disease

TUANA, Balwant, Full Professor
Molecular pharmacology of Ca2+ signaling; novel genes of the cardiovascular system; molecular basis of heart failure

VANDERHYDEN, Barbara, Cross-appointment
Molecular studies on ovarian cancer; ovarian follicular development; production of transgenic mice

WOULFE, John, Cross-appointment
Neurodegenerative dementias; (Alzheimer's disease and non-Alzheimer's frontotemporal dementias); Parkinson's disease and the synucleinopathies; pathogenesis of certain neurodegenerative disorders

YAO, Zemin, Full Professor
Factors required for hepatic assembly and secretion of apoB-containing lipoproteins; the LDL-receptor binding domain(s) within human apoB100; mechanisms responsible for the intracellular degradation of newly synthesized apoB, Structure/function relationships within LRP (the LDL-receptor Related Protein) and its potential role in post-prendial fat absorption by the adipose tissue

Admission to the collaborative program in Pathology and Experimental Medicine is governed by the general regulations of the FGPS.

Candidates must indicate in their application for admission form that they wish to be accepted in the collaborative program.

To be accepted into the collaborative program students must:

  • Be admitted to one of the programs participating in the collaborative program.
  • Provide at least one letter of recommendation from a professor who is willing and available to act as thesis supervisor.
  • Be sponsored into the collaborative program by a faculty member, normally the thesis supervisor, who must be a member of the Pathology and Experimental Medicine program.
The requirements and regulations of both the primary program and of the collaborative program must be met.

The requirements specific to the collaborative program are as follows:

  • One course (3 credits) in the primary program.
  • One Pathology and Experimental Medicine specialization course (3 credits).
  • Successful completion of the Pathology and Experimental Medicine seminar course.
  • Presentation and defence of a thesis on a topic in pathology and experimental medicine based on original research carried out under the supervision of a professor who is a member of the Pathology and Experimental Medicine collaborative program. At least one of the thesis examiners must be a member of the Pathology and Experimental Medicine collaborative program.

Transfer from MSc to PhD

The regulations for transfer from MSc to PhD without being required to write a master’s thesis are those in effect in the student’s primary program.

Minimum Standards

The passing grade in all courses is C+. Students who fail two courses (equivalent to 6 credits) must withdraw from the program.

Thesis Advisory Committee (TAC)

The composition of the Thesis Advisory Committee (TAC) and the frequency of committee meetings follow the regulations of the respective primary program. At least one member of the TAC, in addition to the thesis supervisor, must be part of the Pathology and Experimental Medicine collaborative program.

PME5366 Seminar (3cr.)
Presentation of one seminar and one poster required during the year as well as regular attendance at the departmental seminar series of the student’s primary program. Active participation in the annual Pathology Research Day of the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. Seminar and poster presentations will be organized by the Pathology and Experimental Medicine program and evaluated by Pathology and Experimental Medicine members. Compulsory for students enrolled in the MSc program. Graded S/NS.

PME8112 Cell Biology and the Molecular Basis of Pathological Phenotypes (3cr.)
Molecular principles of cell biology, with a focus on the mechanisms of disease. Disorders in cell biological processes that underlie many pathological phenotypes, such as intracellular transport, mitochondrial dynamics, cell biology of the nucleus and the regulation of the cytoskeleton. Emphasis on emerging experimental techniques, including functional assay design, fluorescence microscopy (multi-photon, confocal, assays like Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET), Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging Microscopy (FLIM), Fluorescence Recovery After Photobleaching (FRAP), photoactivation and uncaging) and electron microscopy. Participants will have hands-on experience and will work to apply these techniques to their own research problems by rotation through participating laboratories. The experiments performed by the students during the course will be assembled into a manuscript-style paper for submission at the end of the term to be graded by the course co-ordinator. Enrolment is limited to 10 students and preference will be given to students whose projects are related directly to these concepts and techniques.

PME8366 Seminar (3cr.)
Presentation of one seminar and one poster required during the year as well as regular attendance at the departmental seminar series of the student’s primary program. Active participation in the annual Pathology Research Day of the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. Seminar and poster presentations will be organized by the Pathology and Experimental Medicine program and evaluated by Pathology and Experimental Medicine members. Compulsory for students enrolled in the PhD program. Graded S/NS.

Courses related to the collaborative program offered by each participating unit.

BCH8107 ADVANCED TOPICS IN STRUCTURE AND FUNCTION OF PLASMA LIPOPROTEINS (3cr.)
Recent advances in our knowledge of the plasma lipoproteins with a special emphasis on their role in the etiology of atherosclerosis. The subject will be introduced by an overview of the general structural properties of lipoproteins which will be followed by detailed discussion of the structure, metabolism and genetics of the apolipoproteins, the proteins and enzymes that modify lipoproteins and cell surface lipoprotein receptors. Other topics will include cholesterol homeostasis, plasma cholesterol transport and disorders of lipoprotein metabolism.

CMM5001 THE PATHOLOGICAL BASIS OF DISEASE (3cr.)
Introductory Course for Non-Medial Graduate Students in the Life Sciences. This course will consist of a brief introduction to pathology describing the manifestation of disease at the macroscopic and microscopic level. This will be followed by (i) A description of various types of microscopy and methodology. (ii) Concepts in flow cytometry, tissue/cell fractionation. (iii) Histo-/cytochemistry and immunohisto-/cytochemistry. (iv) Normal cells and tissues. (v) Organs. (vi) The general pathology of cells and tissues including hypertrophy, aplasia, atrophy, hyperplasia, metaplasia, dysplasia, neoplasia, storage diseases, extracellular space pathologies, necrosis and apoptosis. Blood vessel and cardiac pathologies will be covered as well as concepts in neuropathology, organ/system specific pathologies and genetic diseases.

CMM5105 INTRODUCTION TO CANCER BIOLOGY (3cr.)
An introduction to the biology of cancer. Major topics in cancer biology include the following: tumor suppression/oncogenes; apoptosis in cancer; cell immortalization and senesence; genomic instability; multistep tumorigenesis/inflammation in cancer; biology of angiogenesis; rational therapies.

CMM5315 CELLULAR AND MOLECULAR BASIS OF CARDIOVASCULAR FUNCTION/DYSFUNCTION (3cr.)
Mechanism of failing heart and cardiovascular system, its associated functions and associated conditions. Therapies for restoring function. Topics include: regulation of heart development, cell signaling, cellular and molecular mechanisms of atherosclerosis and heart disease, hormonal regulation, hypertension, bioenergetics, cardiovascular genomics and genetics, cell therapy, and regenerative medicine.

CMM8105 ADVANCED TOPICS IN CANCER BIOLOGY (3cr.)
Advanced study of recent developments in the field of cancer biology with emphasis on cellular and molecular aspects. Specific topics to be covered include: angiogenesis, apoptosis, cancer genetics, cell signaling, genetic instability, oncogenes and tumour suppressors.

NSC8101 ADVANCED TOPICS IN NEUROPATHOLOGY (3cr.)
General histopathological responses of central and peripheral nervous tissue to pathological stimuli including hypoxic-ischemic, traumatic, inflammatory/infectious, demyelinating and toxic. Emerging topics in neurology and neuropathology including the following: the pathology and pathogenesis of protein-based neurodegenerative disorders, the emerging family of RNA-mediated neurological disorders, mendelian and non-mendelian genetic diseases of the nervous system (including the role of microRNA in neurological disease), advances in diseases of skeletal muscle, advances in the molecular pathogenesis of Central Nervous System tumours, and advances in metabolic/mitochondrial/storage diseases.

Coordinates not available