About Us


The Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute

The Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute, located at Mount Sinai Hospital, is one of the leading biomedical research facilities in the world. Created in 1985, the institute is profoundly advancing the understanding of human biology in health and disease. Many of the breakthroughs that began as fundamental research have already resulted in new and better ways to prevent, diagnose and treat common illnesses — bringing a healthier future to Canadians.

Research institutes operating within academic hospitals have become the hallmark of leading medical centres in North America. For more than 25 years, the partnership between the institute and Mount Sinai Hospital has demonstrated the value of integrating research into the clinical setting and has distinguished Mount Sinai as a top tier academic leader.

The Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum’s reputation serves as a magnet for recruiting world-class clinicians and clinician-scientists who wish to practice in a culture of inquiry and innovation. Close to 40 internationally-recognized principle investigators work in contemporary fields of investigation that are aligned with the Hospital’s flagship clinical programs and continue to make leading-edge discoveries in the prevention, detection and treatment of diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, breast/prostate/ovarian cancer, sarcoma, pre-eclampsia and complications of pregnancy, neurodegenerative and mental health disorders.

Quick Facts

  • The Samuel Lunenfeld Research Institute was established in 1985 at Mount Sinai Hospital and was co-named the Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute on June 24, 2013.
  • Ranked in the top ten biomedical research institutes worldwide in terms of quality of science.
  • Research budget for FY2013 was approximately $103.4 million.
  • Home to 34 principal investigators, 15 associate scientists, 215 trainees.
  • Receives the highest competitive funding awards per investigator in Canada.
  • Houses the largest women’s and infants’ health research team in North America.
  • Considered to have the highest impact diabetes research team of any research institute, worldwide.
  • Publishes more than 350 papers in leading scientific journals every year ― consistently achieving Canada’s highest percentage of papers published in the top one per cent of biomedical research journals.
  • Based on strengths in genetics and system biology, the Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum and Mount Sinai Hospital have launched a high profile initiative to integrate new advances in personalized medicine into clinical practice ― with an initial focus on arthritis and women’s and infants’ health.
  • Over one third of Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum research scientists hold Canadian Research Chairs, ranking among the highest proportion of any research institute in the country.
  • Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum is home to Canada’s first super-resolution microscope and a leading edge robotics facility that can analyze thousands of genes at a time.
  • Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum’s Systems Biology team is considered to be in the top five worldwide.

Scientific Groupings

  • Systems biology
  • Genomic/personalized medicine
  • Neurodevelopment and cognitive functions
  • Cancer genetics
  • Women’s & Infants’ health
  • Prosserman Centre for Population Health Research
  • Centre for stem cells and tissue engineering
  • Centre for modeling human disease
  • Regenerative medicine and musculoskeletal research

Recent Achievements


In a groundbreaking study published in Nature Medicine, Senior Investigator Dr. Daniel Drucker and his team showed how a new drug ― already helping millions of diabetes patients around the world ― can also independently help lower risk for heart attacks and strokes, two of the most important complications associated with type 2 diabetes. Dr. Drucker’s work also includes the development of incretin-based therapies for type 2 diabetes and the clinical testing of a new once-weekly treatment to replace the common twice-daily injection.


Dr. Jeff Wrana and his team garnered media attention for their major discovery about the way cancer spreads. The team found that proteins produced in normal cells near the environment of a cancer tumour influence the cancer’s ability to spread to other tissues of the body. This alters the standard thought that cancer cells were responsible for cancer spreading. This discovery has the potential to transform the way cancer is treated.

DNA Repair

In the first study of its kind published in Molecular Cell, Drs. Daniel Durocher and Frank Sicheri have uncovered the structural mechanism of a specific protein that inhibits the DNA damage response in the cell. This discovery deepens our understanding of genetic “protection” responses, opening the door to new, more sophisticated cancer therapies. Mutations in genes involved in the DNA damage response frequently contribute to cancer formation, as well as infertility and immune deficiency. Targeting the proteins that regulate DNA repair could lead to new types of therapeutics for these diseases.

Kidney Disease

In a study published in the prestigious journal Cell, researchers Drs. Susan Quaggin and Tony Pawson made an important discovery relating to the effects of a vital signalling protein in the kidney, potentially impacting drug therapies and treatment for the more than 30,000 Canadians who suffer from kidney failure.

Childhood Obesity

In a groundbreaking discovery published in the International Journal of Epidemiology, Dr. Laurent Briollais and Dr. Stephen Lye found that exclusively breastfeeding infants who are genetically predisposed to obesity for at least 3 months can help reverse the impact of the child’s genetic risk for obesity.

Neurodegenerative Disorders

A discovery by Dr. Mei Zhen and her team, published in the journal Neuron, is laying the groundwork for restoring movements for patients suffering from neurodegenerative disorders, such as Huntington’s disease, Parkinson’s and ALS. By studying the motor circuitry of C. elegans ― a worm ― Dr. Zhen’s team was able to isolate not only specific groups of neurons, but also the specific connections and properties of these neurons that control specific movements. 

Gastrointestinal Disorder

Research by Dr. Daniel Drucker led to FDA approval for a drug to treat patients with short bowel syndrome, a debilitating condition often associated with colon cancer and IBD patients.

Cell Division

Dr. Laurence Pelletier and his team studied how chromosomes are precisely separated into two daughter cells during cell replication and found a new weapon to dissect the organization of a key structure required for proper separation of chromosomes in cell division. Their findings have implications for cancer and conditions related to defects in chromosome segregation, such as Down’s syndrome.

Women’s and Infants’ Health

Building on Mount Sinai’s growing clinical expertise in Women’s and Infants’ health, the Hospital has just launched the largest Canadian study of its kind to track the health of women and their babies. Thousands of women will participate in the Ontario Birth Study to help understand how genes and the environment interact to shape our potential risks. Led by Drs. Alan Bocking and Stephen Lye, world renowned experts in developmental health and Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum scientists, a team of more than 30 clinicians and research staff are associated with this important study that will help transform the standard of care for women and their babies.

Breast Cancer

Breast cancer is the most common cancer affecting women in Canada and the latest high-profile study coming out of Mount Sinai Hospital is helping shape our future knowledge and treatment for the disease. The LEGACY study, led by Dr. Irene Andrulis, a leading molecular geneticist and Senior Investigator, involves over 900 girls from across North America, many with a family history of breast cancer. This unique study will help further an understanding of the relationship between genetics and environmental factors in the development of breast cancer.


  About Us
   Senior Administration
   Research Committee
   Canada Research Continuity Emergency Fund
    Funding Opportunities
     CRCEF - Stage 3
   Canada Research Chairs
   Technology Transfer
   Career Opportunities
    Dr. Irene L. Andrulis
    Dr. Rod Bremner
    Dr. Laurent Briollais
    Dr. Theodore J. Brown
    Dr. Shelley B. Bull
    Dr. Kieran Campbell
    Dr. Isabella Caniggia
    Dr. Robert F. Casper
    Dr. Graham L. Collingridge
    Dr. Sabine P. Cordes
    Dr. Joseph Culotti
    Dr. James Dennis
    Dr. Daniel J. Drucker
    Dr. Daniel Durocher
    Dr. Steven Gallinger
    Dr. Anne-Claude Gingras
    Dr. Pamela Goodwin
    Dr. Marc D. Grynpas
    Dr. Rayjean J. Hung
    Dr. Hartland W. Jackson
    Dr. Andrea Jurisicova
    Dr. Julia A. Knight
    Dr. Alexander G. Logan
    Dr. Stephen J. Lye
    Dr. Andras Nagy
    Dr. Michelle Nelson
    Dr. Kenichi Okamoto
    Dr. Laurence Pelletier
    Dr. Miguel Ramalho-Santos
    Dr. Frederick P. Roth
    Dr. Daniel Schramek
    Dr. Frank Sicheri
    Dr. Mark S. Silverberg
    Dr. Katherine Siminovitch
    Dr. Carolyn Steele Gray
    Dr. Ross Upshur
    Dr. Jim R. Woodgett
    Dr. Jeffrey Wrana
    Dr. Mei Zhen
    Dr. Bernard Zinman
   Clinician Scientists
    Dr. May Alarab
    Dr. Dominic Amato
    Dr. Amir Azarpazhooh
    Dr. Mrinalini Balki
    Dr. Chaim Bell
    Dr. Christine Brezden-Masley
    Dr. June C. Carroll
    Dr. Crystal Chan
    Dr. Kenneth Croitoru
    Dr. Ariel Dalfen
    Dr. Allan Detsky
    Dr. Brendan C. Dickson
    Dr. Rohan D. DSouza
    Dr. Denice S. Feig
    Dr. Emer Finan
    Dr. John S. Floras
    Dr. Michael Fralick
    Dr. Shiphra R. Ginsburg
    Dr. Rebecca A. Gladdy
    Dr. Michael Goldberg
    Dr. Ellen Greenblatt
    Dr. Masoom A. Haider
    Dr. Jonathan J. Hunter
    Dr. Amna F. Husain
    Dr. Amish Jain
    Dr. Keith A. Jarvi
    Dr. Lianne P. Jeffs
    Dr. Jennie Johnstone
    Dr. Rita Kandel
    Dr. Edmond Kelly
    Dr. Erin D. Kennedy
    Dr. Edward C. Keystone
    Dr. James Khan
    Dr. John Kingdom
    Dr. Richard Kirsch
    Dr. Elena Kolomietz
    Dr. Caroline K. Kramer
    Dr. Stephen Lapinsky
    Dr. Shoo K. Lee
    Dr. Molyn Leszcz
    Dr. Susanna Mak
    Dr. Ann K. Malinowski
    Dr. Robert G. Maunder
    Dr. Taymaa May
    Dr. Allison McGeer
    Dr. Warren McIsaac
    Dr. Sangeeta Mehta
    Dr. Shikha Mittoo
    Dr. Ally Murji
    Dr. Kellie E. Murphy
    Dr. Geoffrey C. Nguyen
    Dr. Karel O'Brien
    Dr. Christian Pagnoux
    Dr. Claire Pain
    Dr. John Parker
    Dr. Bruce A. Perkins
    Dr. Allan Peterkin
    Dr. Aaron F. Pollett
    Dr. Paula Ravitz
    Dr. Albiruni A. Razak
    Dr. Ravi Retnakaran
    Dr. Robert H. Riddell
    Dr. Greg Ryan
    Dr. Joel Sadavoy
    Dr. Francisco J. Sanchez-Guerrero
    Dr. Amanda Selk
    Dr. Prakeshkumar Shah
    Dr. Vibhuti Shah
    Dr. Naveed Tahir Siddiqui
    Dr. Candice K. Silversides
    Dr. Daisy R. Singla
    Dr. Kim Tsoi
    Dr. Hillary A. Steinhart
    Dr. Carol Swallow
    Dr. Howard C. Tenenbaum
    Dr. Sharon L. Unger
    Dr. Chen Wang
    Dr. Alanna Weisman
    Dr. Virginia A. Wesson
    Dr. Lesley Wiesenfeld
    Dr. Rory Windrim
    Dr. Jay Wunder
    Dr. Alexandre Zlotta
   Staff Scientists
    Dr. Karen Colwill
    Dr. John Georgiou
    Dr. Colin Mckerlie
    Dr. Jinyi Zhang
   Associate Members / Scientists
    Dr. Gary D. Bader
    Dr. Bharati Bapat
    Dr. Marcus Bernardini
    Dr. Lisa D. Burry
    Dr. George S. Charames
    Dr. Mary Chiu
    Dr. Eleftherios P. Diamandis
    Dr. Sarah Ferguson
    Dr. Michael Glogauer
    Dr. Jack M. Goodman
    Dr.Tae Hart
    Dr. Johannes Keunen
    Dr. Jordan Lerner-Ellis
    Dr. Zhong-Cheng Luo
    Dr. Stephen G. Matthews
    Dr. John R. McLaughlin
    Dr. Helen McNeill
    Dr. Massieh Moayedi
    Dr. Abdul Noor
    Dr. Ian M. Rogers
    Dr. Mike Tyers
   Physician Directory
   Our Research
  Trainee Centre
   Summer Research Program
    Innovations in prostate cancer research during moustache season and beyond
    New genetic discoveries offer hope to IBD patients
    Diabetes: disease of the 21st century will affect approximately 500 million by 2030
    What does a worms nervous system tell us about disorders like Huntingtons Disease?
    The Year in Review: 2012 Highlights from the Samuel Lunenfeld Research Institute
    Millennials Help Scientists Transform Breast Cancer Research
    How Research Impacts Your Health
    2013 International Symposium: Frontiers in Diabetes Research
    $35 Million Gift from Larry and Judy Tanenbaum Launches Fundraising Drive for Endowment to Support Medical Research
    Director warns why we shouldn't neglect basic science in favour of applied science
    The anatomy of a major discovery
    Unravelling the mysteries of complex brain disorders
    LTRI Q&A: How do we predict breast cancer risk more effectively?
    Michal Zimmermann and his efforts to improve cancer drug efficacy
    Dheva Setiaputra
    Salom Adam
   Discovery Corner
    Not your typical March Break: the life of an intern at the LTRI
   Slides relating to the recommendations of CANADA'S FUNDAMENTAL SCIENCE REVIEW