Transforming Cancer Therapy Development

    At the University of Guelph, we have a unique capacity to conduct companion animal clinical trials on a variety of cancer types alongside laboratory bench-top research.

    The Ontario Veterinary College Health Sciences Centre is the first Canadian institution involved in the NIH Comparative Oncology Trial Consortium. Our extensive experience in companion animal clinical trials allows us to fill an unmet translational gap in cancer therapy design for people. Through this work, we will establish regulatory pipelines to change the landscape of how cancer interventions are evaluated and approved. 

    Our interdisciplinary research team will focus on the following themes to address the unmet need of developing effective and impactful cancer therapies:

    • Interdiscipinary Translational Cancer Therapeutics and Intervention
      • Drs. Jim Petrik, Michelle Oblak, Cathy Bauman, Byram Bridle, Angela Canovas, Hal Hirte, Sebastien Hotte, Ronald Johnson, Rosalyn Jeurgens, Roger Moorehead, Valerie Poirier, Rebecca Shapiro, Paul Woods, Sarah Wootton, Alex zur Linden
      • Existing and future pan-cancer and cancer-specific therapies that can be tested in companion animal cancer clinical trials 
      • Development of canine PDX models – feed back to murine models for therapy refinement and further testing in clinical trials 
      • Improvements in medical devices and staging/surgical/ procedural companion animal cancer treatment that can be applied to human cancer therapy (vice versa)
    • Maximizing Quality of Life in Cancer Patients
      • Drs. Gianinna Descalzi, Jibran Khokhar and Lee Niel
      • Pain mitigation using cannabinoids and other supportive interventions 
      • Impact on human-animal bond 
    • Personalized Medicine and Cross-Species Genomics
      • Drs. Huiyan Li, Anthony Mutsaers, David Pearl, Courtney Schott,  Darren Wood, Geoff Wood, Alicia Viloria-Petit, Wei Zhang
      • Matching therapies with genetic mutations 
      • Identification of unique biomarkers of disease progression and response to therapy 
      • Bi-directional information sharing on genetic similarities/differences, and identification of predictive tools and therapeutic targets
    • Social Impact, Ethics, and Economics of Translational Cancer Therapeutics
      • Drs. Michael Burgess, Kieran O’Doherty, Stuart Peacock
      • Placing translational cancer therapeutics and research in the broader context of social, ethical and economic considerations
      • designing,  implementing, and handling feedback regarding potential policies and funding for emerging cancer therapeutics

    Our Key Members

    Dr. Jim Petrik (Lead)
    Dr. Byram Bridle
    Dr. Giannina Descalzi
    Dr. Rosalyn Jeurgens
    Dr. Huiyan Li
    Dr. Lee Niel
    Dr. David Pearl
    Dr. Rebecca Shapiro
    Dr. Geoff Wood
    Dr. Wei Zhang
    Dr. Michelle Oblak (Lead)
    Dr. Michael Burgess
    Dr. Hal Hirte
    Dr. Ron Johnson
    Dr. Roger Moorehead
    Dr. Kieran O’Doherty
    Dr. Valerie Poirier
    Dr. Alicia Viloria-Petit
    Dr. Paul Woods
    Dr. Alex zur Linden
    Dr. Cathy Bauman
    Dr. ‪Angela Cánovas
    Dr. Sebastien Hotte
    Dr. Jibran Khokhar
    Dr. Anthony Mutsaers
    Dr. Stuart Peacock
    Dr. Courtney Schott
    Dr. Darren Wood
    Dr. Sarah Wootton

    Facilities and Collaborations

    The key members of the Kennel to Cure work collaboratively with experts from diverse disciplines and backgrounds to make integrative contributions and create innovative approaches to translational research and clinical trials. Kennel to Cure research activities benefit from access to and involvement with the following facilities: