Dr. John Dick

CIHR Gold Leaf Prize for Discovery

Dr. John Dick is a Senior Scientist at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre and the McEwen Centre for Regenerative Medicine at the University Health Network; a Professor in the Department of Molecular Genetics at the University of Toronto; the Director of the Program in Cancer Stem Cells at the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research; and the Canada Research Chair in Stem Cell Biology.

Dr. Dick’s research is focused on seeing inside the “black box” of leukemia, with the goal of better understanding how molecular pathways differ in the blood systems of healthy people and those with the disease. Armed with this knowledge, he hopes to develop treatments to disrupt the molecular process that leads to leukemia and ultimately prevent it from occurring.

Dr. Dick is well known for his pioneering work on cancer stem cells, which marked a major shift in cancer research. His cancer stem cell hypothesis gave rise to the idea that certain cancer cells could persist in the body after radiation and chemotherapy, causing new tumours to grow and leading to the spread of the disease. His research holds the promise for improved treatments and quality of life for the two in five Canadians who will develop cancer in their lifetimes.

Learn more: John E. Dick: Canada Research Chair in Stem Cell Biology.

This prize is awarded to an individual or team whose research findings are unique, inspirational and break new ground, significantly influencing knowledge in their field.

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