Meet the participants of PIP 2021! Here you can find out where our Patient Partners’ reside, their research advocacy interests, which sessions they are co-chairing (where applicable), and the delegates they are paired with during the conference. Feel free to connect with Patient Partners to find out more about them and how your research would benefit from patient engagement.


Mr. Jason Abramovitch
South Mountain, Ont.
AYA, colorectal cancerNot applicableDr. Florence Anjong Tikum, University of Saskatchewan – Poster: “89Zr- matuzumab for epitope-specific imaging of treatment response to anti- epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) positive monoclonal antibody therapeutics by PET”Ontario Institute for Cancer Research

Ms. Ruth Ackerman
Toronto, Ont.
Triple Negative breast cancer, late effects, drug development, immunotherapy, CAR-T therapeuticsKeynote (Wed Nov 10) – Tomorrow’s Cancer Therapies Today with Dr. Madhuri Koti, Queen’s UniversityDr. Victoria Hoskin, Queen’s University – LS 2A (Tues. Nov. 9) – Lighting Session – Breast Cancer: “Inhibiting the adaptor protein ezrin enhances adaptive anti- tumor immune response in a mouse model of triple-negative breast cancer”

Ms. Nathalie Baudais
Thode, Sask.
Metastatic breast cancer, Triple Negative Breast Cancer, BRCA1 mutations, hereditary cancers, clinical trials, palliative care• ORAL 1B (Mon Nov 8) – Concurrent Session - Clinical Trial Approaches with Dr. Madeline Li, University Health Network, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre
• Keynote (Thurs Nov 11) – Understanding and Managing Risk – The saga of hereditary cancer with Dr. Jacques Simard, Centre de recherche du CHU de Québec, Université Laval
Mr. Kyle Lewis, McGill University – Poster: “The p66ShcA Adaptor Protein as a Contextual Promoter of Breast Cancer Metastasis”

Mr. Mark Beck
Regina, Sask.
Metastatic breast cancer, cancer geneticsNot applicableDr. Danyyl Ippolitov, University of Manitoba – Poster: “Establishing an ErbB2 inhibitor responsive patient- derived HER2+ breast cancer brain metastasis in-vivo model”Saskatchewan Cancer Agency

Ms. Louise Bird
Carlyle, Sask.
Quality of life, survivorship, and ethics of virtual careORAL 1D (Mon Nov 8) - Concurrent Session – Indigenous Cancer Research with Dr. Brenda Elias, University of ManitobaDr. Sarah Poynter, Wilfrid Laurier University – Poster: “Nanoparticle carriers of nucleic acid stimulants enhance the immune responsiveness of cancer cells in vitro”

Mr. Vikram Bubber
Surrey, B.C.
Late-/long-term effects (radiation), accessibility issues and equitable accessNot applicableMr. James Jeon, University of British Columbia – Poster: “A new system providing a robust non-invasive approach for oral cancer screening”Canadian Partnership Against Cancer

Ms. Melissa Coombs

St. John’s, N.L.
AYA, survivorship (nutrition, physical activity), clinical trials, long-term effects of cancerORAL 3A (Wed Nov 10) - Concurrent Session – COVID-29 and Cancer Screening and Treatment with Dr. Timothy Hanna, Queen’s UniversityDr. Arvind Singh Mer, University of Ottawa – LS 1C (Mon. Nov. 8) - Lightening Session – Blood Cancer: “Molecular Subtyping of NPM1 mutated AML”

Dr. Don Desserud
Cornwall, P.E.I.
Evidence-informed health care decision-making, emotional impacts on caregiversKeynote (Mon Nov 8) - Personalizing Big Data with Dr. Claudia Kleinman, McGill University, Lady Davis InstituteDr. Alli Murugesan, University of New Brunswick – LS 1C (Mon. Nov. 8) - Lightening Session – Blood Cancer: “Transient receptor potential vanilloid type calcium channel (TPPV6) as a novel therapeutic target in lymphoid tumours”

Ms. Kirsten Efremov
Brampton, Ont.
AYA, long-term effects of treatment, palliative care, rare cancersORAL 4D (Thurs Nov 11) Concurrent Session – Bioinformatics and AI with Dr. Franco Vizeacoumar, Saskatchewan Cancer Agency, University of SaskatchewanDr. Hsien Seow, McMaster University – LS 1A (Mon. Nov. 8) – Lightening Session – Palliative Care: “The PROVIDER tool: Validating cancer model to predict risk of death, poor performance status and severe symptoms over time”; “Does early palliative care reduce end-of-life healthcare costs: A population-based, propensity score matched cohort study”Ontario Institute for Cancer Research

Ms. Catherine Hays
Rocky View County, Alta.
Metastatic breast cancer, cancer registry expansion, clinical trial design, cardiotoxicityORAL 2C (Tues Nov 9) Concurrent Session – Metastasis with Dr. Amina Zoubeidi, University of British ColumbiaDr. Armin Gamper, University of Alberta, Cross Cancer Institute – LS 3A (Wed. Nov. 10) – Lightening Session – Synthetic Lethality: “Preclinical Studies on Novel Treatment Plans for Metastatic Triple Negative Breast Cancers”Alberta Cancer Foundation

Ms. Heather Hogan
Woodstock, N.B.
Lung cancer screening, early diagnosis, treatment access, rurality and aging, peer supportORAL 1A (Mon Nov 8)- Concurrent Session – Tumour Microenvironment and Immunology with Dr. Paola Marcato, Dalhousie University, Beatrice Hunter Cancer Research  InstituteMr. Daniel Medina-Luna, Dalhousie University – Poster: “Mobilization of Memory NK cells in Cancer Immunotherapy”

Dr. Rosilene Kraft
Coquitlam, B.C.
Metastatic breast cancer, cancer biology, cancer modelling, bioinformatics, epigenetics, novel treatmentsORAL 4A (Thurs Nov 11) Concurrent Session – Epigenetics with Dr. Gareth Williams, University of CalgaryDr. Michael Witcher, The Lady Davis Institute of McGill University – ORAL 2C (Tues. Nov. 9) – Concurrent Session – Metastasis: “3D Chromatin Remodeling Potentiates Transcriptional Programs Driving Cell Invasion”

Mr. David Laird
Winnipeg, Man.
Workplace issues, health care delivery and access, early diagnosisNot applicableDr. Versha Banerji, University of Manitoba/CancerCare Manitoba – Poster: “Impact of Interleukin-4 on Mitochondrial Function and AMPK/SIRT1/PGC-1a Signalling Pathway with Venetoclax and Ibrutinib treated Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia Cells”

Ms. Debi Lascelle
Ottawa, Ont.
Lung cancer screening, early detection, palliative careKeynote (Tues Nov 9) – Aging Well with Cancer with Dr. Martine Puts, University of TorontoDr. Paola Marignani, Dalhousie University – Poster: “Characterization of lung cancer transcriptome using single- cell RNA-sequencing”

Ms. Donna Pepin
Barrie, Ont.
Ovarian cancer, rare cancers, cancer survivorship (nutrition, physical fitness, stress), medical educationORAL 2B (Tues Nov 9) Concurrent Session – Patient Reported Outcomes and Patient Experience with Dr. Lynn Gauthier, Centre de recherche du CHU de Québec, Université LavalMs. Noor Shakfa, Queen's Cancer Research Institute – Poster: “Improving genotype specific chemotherapy response in ovarian cancer via cGAS- STING pathway activation”

Mme. Lucie Piché
Montréal, Que.
Breast and ovarian cancer, clinical trials, medical education, palliative care / Cancer du sein, cancer de l'ovaire, essais cliniques, éducation médicale, soins palliatifsNot applicableDrs. Anne-Marie Mes-Masson & Véronique Ouellet, CR-CHUM (supporters)Institut du Cancer de Montréal

Mr. Angus Pratt
Surrey, B.C.
Lung cancer, palliative care, peer support, effects of COVID on cancer care, male breast cancerORAL 3C (Wed Nov 10) - Concurrent Session – Metabolism with Dr. Rachel Murphy, University of British ColumbiaMs. Kiersten Thomas, BC Cancer – Poster: “Angiotensin II Type 1 Receptor Blockers (ARBs) and the Tumour Immune Microenvironment”

Mr. Archie Stewart
Port Hawkesbury, N.S.
Tobacco prevention, tobacco cessation, lung cancer screening, precision medicine, palliative careORAL 3B (Wed Nov 10) - Concurrent Session – Lifestyle and Diet with Dr. P. Peter Wang, University of TorontoDr. Ambreen Sayani, Women's College Hospital - LS 2D (Tues. Nov. 9) – Lighting Session – Lung Cancer: “Perspectives of family physicians towards access to lung cancer screening for individuals living with low income”Canadian Partnership Against Cancer

Ms. Michelle Stratton
Belleville, Ont.
Colorectal cancer, biomarkers, early diagnosisORAL 4C (Thurs Nov 11) Concurrent Session – Patient Engagement with Dr. David Dawe, CancerCare Manitoba, University of ManitobaDr. Arshad Ayyaz, Mount Sinai Hospital – Poster: “Revival Stem Cells Mediate P53-Dependent DNA Repair to Regenerate the Intestinal Epithelium”Ontario Institute for Cancer Research

Ms. Katey Thompson
Ottawa, Ont.
Brain tumours (malignant/non- malignant), AYA, survivorshipORAL 4B (Thurs Nov 11) Concurrent Session – Imaging and Radiation Oncology with Dr. Nawaid Usmani, University of AlbertaMr. Kyle Malone, CHEO Research Institute – Poster: “Exploring Resistance Mechanisms to IAP-Focused Glioblastoma Immunotherapies”Ontario Institute for Cancer Research

Ms. Chantale Thurston
Winnipeg, Man.
AYA, equitable access, rare cancers, peer supportORAL 1C (Mon Nov 8) - Concurrent Session – Immunotherapy with Dr. Shashi Gujar, Dalhousie UniversityDr. Ali Mahdipour-Shirayeh, University of Toronto – ORAL 2A (Tues. Nov. 9) – Concurrent Session – Precision Medicine and Biomarkers: “Deciphering intra-tumoral heterogeneity in multiple myeloma: A single cell study”Canadian Partnership Against Cancer

Dr. Christine Wu
Winnipeg, Man.
Lung cancer, brain metastases, biomarkers, palliative care, impact of COVID on cancer care, peer supportORAL 2A (Tues Nov 9) Concurrent Session – Precision Medicine and Biomarkers with Dr. Elena Kuzmin, Concordia University, McGill UniversityMr. Javad Alizadeh, University of Manitoba – Poster: “Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Metastasis: Mitophagy and Anoikis Involvement”

Ms. Mei-Lin Yee
Vaudreuil-sur-le-lac, Que.
Equity in cancer care, systemic financial toxicity, access to therapeuticsORAL 3D (Wed Nov 10) - Concurrent Session – Equity in Cancer Care with Dr. Erin Strumpf, McGill UniversityMr. Elias Maldonado, McGill University – Poster: “Molecular Insight into how p66ShcA Potentiates Breast Cancer Metastasis”Réseau de recherche sur le cancer (RRCancer)

[1] Unrestricted support for PIP was provided by: Canadian Cancer Society, CIHR Institute of Cancer Research, BioCanRx, Cancer Research Society, and The Terry Fox Research Institute.

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