University of Toronto, Canada

Dr. Jeff Wrana’s research is focusedon understanding how signalling networks drive tissue morphogenesis, regeneration and cancer. His work has concentrated on mapping a complex network that incorporates regulation of cell polarity with morphogen and tissue size control signalling pathways. His research aims to expose the mechanisms involved in the development of these networks and to reveal new targets for treatments that would attack the entire disease network, not just individual hubs. Dr. Wrana’s research program involves the application of high-throughput, robotics-based technologies coupled to functional genomics strategies, mouse genetics and human 3D tumour and organoid models of development and disease.

Dr. Wrana received his Ph.D. in biochemistry in 1991 from the University of Toronto, and completed postdoctoral training at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York before establishing in 1995 his independent research program now at the Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute and the University of Toronto. He has won numerous awards and honours for his research success that include, in 2012, the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee medal from the Prime Minister of Canada and in 2010, the Premier’s Summit Award. Dr. Wrana has been a Howard Hughes Medical Institute International Research Scholar and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. He has received a number of prizes for his research excellence including the William E. Rawls Prize from the National Cancer Institute of Canada, the Merck Frosst Prize from the Canadian Society of Biochemistry Molecular and Cell Biology, and the Paul Marks Prize for Cancer Research from the Memorial Sloan Kettering Institute.