Our clinical and research team

Dr. Donna Wall
Donna Wall, MD, CCPE
REACH

The Hospital for Sick Children
Section Head
Blood & Marrow Transplant/Cell Therapy Program
Division of Haematology/Oncology
Research Institute
Senior Associate Scientist
Developmental & Stem Cell Biology Program
University of Toronto
Professor
Departments of paediatrics and Immunology

Translational Research

Through the cellular therapy laboratory and related cord blood banking I have been active in the field of developmental cell therapeutics. I have worked on early stage cellular therapy trials (T cell depletion and CD34 enrichment) and the development of cord blood as a cell therapy alternative (established 2 major cord blood banks, development of cord blood banking standards and regulation, and the study of cord blood as a biologic project). When I moved to Manitoba I established a research laboratory in the Regenerative Medicine Department and built the Manitoba Centre for Advanced Cell and Tissue Therapy. My research focus has been on immune regulatory cells – myeloid derived suppressor cells and mesenchymal stem/stromal cells. The laboratory supports two major Canadian cooperative cell therapy trials – one evaluating mesenchymal cells for treatment of multiple sclerosis (MESCAMS trial) and the other evaluation a novel phototherapeutic approach to depleting alloractive T cells and enriching for T reg cells as a tool to treat steroid refractory GVHD (CARE trial of the CNTRP). Both have required development of GMP compliant cell manufacturing. The laboratory is working on the development of a relevant and reliable potency assay for mesenchymal stem cells utilizing a proteomic evaluation of resting and licensed MSC – finding that a combination of surface and intracellular changes correlates with suppressive function. The second major focus is on myeloid derived suppressor cells which are a population of immature myeloid cells with profound suppressive functions – able to shut down T, B and dendritic cell function.  We have found that these cells are enriched in allogeneic stem/progenitor cell grafts and recover early post-transplant – making them excellent candidates for modulators of the immune environment post-transplant – both to prevent GVHD and enhance graft vs. leukemia/tumor activity.

Karin Hermans, PhD
Senior Research Associate

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Zhi-Juan Luo, PhD
Research Project Coordinator

Joerg Krueger
Joerg Krueger, MD
Staff Haematologist/Oncologist

Tristan
Tristan Knight MD, FRCPC
Bone Marrow Transplant and Cellular Therapy Fellow

Yogi Chopra
Yogi Chopra, MD
Clinical Associate

Erilda Kapllani
Erilda Kapllani
Clinical Research Project Manager

Muriel Gibson
Muriel Gibson
Administrative Assistant

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Tina Lu
Master Student, Applied Immunology
University of Toronto
tina.lu@sickkids.ca
Zi Fan Yang (Tony)
Research Student, University of Toronto
Graduate Diploma in Health Research Program
Kanhatai Chiengthong
Kanhatai Chiengthong
Clinical Fellow

Mike Hart-Matyas
Mike Hart-Matyas
Paediatric Resident

ALUMNI

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Joanne Bernabe
Research project student
University of Toronto
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William Lee
Research Project Student
University of Toronto
Prerna Chopra
Prerna Chopra
Clinical Research Project Manager

Dr. Salah Ali
Salah Ali, MD
Clinical Fellow

Brian Earl
Brian Earl
CREMS Student, University of Toronto
Michelle Gouveia
Michelle Gouveia
Administrative Coordinator

Caren Kim
Caren Kim, M.Sc
Research Technologist

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Bernard Pan
Summer Student, University of John Hopkins
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Ada Tsang Sze Wah
Summer Student, University of Hong Kong
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Sakshi Chaudhari
Summer Student, University of Toronto
 
Tasneem Islam
Tasneem Islam
Undergraduate Research Student, University of Toronto
 
Ji-won Kim
Ji Won Kim
Undergraduate Research Student, University of Toronto
 
Rachel Tse
Rachel Tse
Summer Student, University of Hong Kong