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On the recommendation of Dean Jane Philpott, Mark Green, Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic) at Queen’s University, has appointed Dr. David M. Berman as Head, Department of Pathology and Molecular Medicine. His appointment is effective July 1, 2021 fo

On the recommendation of Dean Jane Philpott, Mark Green, Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic) at Queen’s University, has appointed Dr. David M. Berman as Head, Department of Pathology and Molecular Medicine. His appointment is effective July 1, 2021 for a five-year term.

Dean Philpott would like to thank Dr. Sandy Boag for his service as Head, Department of Pathology and Molecular Medicine. Under Dr. Boag’s leadership, the department has grown and strengthened its research mission. He leaves the department in an excellent position to continue to deliver on its strategic objectives.

Dr. Berman earned his BA in Psychology at University of Pennsylvania and combined MD/PhD in Genetics and Development at University of Texas Southwestern Medical School. During his residency at Johns Hopkins Hospital, he served as Chief Resident in Pathology from 1998 to 1999, and completed a postdoctoral fellowship in Molecular Biology and Genetics at Johns Hopkins University in 2001.

Dr. Berman was joined the Pathology faculty at Johns Hopkins University in 2001, and was promoted to Associate Professor in 2008. He joined Queen’s University in 2012 and has since been promoted to Professor, Pathology and Molecular Medicine with cross-appointments to Oncology, Medicine, and Biomedical and Molecular Sciences. Dr. Berman served as Director, Division of Cancer Biology and Genetics with Queen’s Cancer Research Institute (QCRI) from 2015-2018. He was appointed Director, QCRI, in 2015 and and will step down from this role when he assumes his headship.

Dr. Berman is a highly respected and experienced leader. As QCRI Director, Dr. Berman leads 60+ faculty members whose research covers the entire spectrum of cancer research. His focus on transdisciplinary cancer research has attracted distinguished investigators to Queen’s from around the world and improved collaboration across translational research teams. Since 2020, Dr. Berman has led the translational research efforts of the Canadian Bladder Cancer Research Network, comprised of urologists, medical and radiation oncologists, pathologists, basic scientists, trainees, and patient advocates from across Canada. During the pandemic, Dr. Berman has been vocal in his commitment to lead and support the wider medical community in creatively adapting to remote work and learning, and to safer and more effective strategies for cancer diagnosis, testing, and therapy.

Dr. Berman is a clinician-scientist whose expertise is widely acknowledged. He has over 90 publications and has held more than $8 million in grant funding for research to improve practice and outcomes for bladder and prostate cancers. The National NTRK Testing Centre at KHSC, of which Dr. Berman is co-founder and co-leader, was established in 2019 by a winning proposal to Bayer Pharmaceuticals. He is an external advisory committee member for the

International Society of Urologic Pathologists, Canadian Cancer Society, and Canadian Cancer Trials Group.

Please join the dean in congratulating Dr. Berman on his appointment as Head, Department of Pathology and Molecular Medicine.

Dr. Bob Prentice

Dr. Bob Prentice passed away in Kingston on June 12 at the age of 84 after suffering complications from a heart attack.

He leaves his wife of 61 years, Gwen, their children, Gwen (Pierre), Greg, and Laura, and their grandchildren, Thomas and Laina. He is predeceased by their oldest son, Bob.

After graduating in Queen's Meds '60, Bob worked as a pathologist at the Hotel Dieu Hospital.  Dr. Prentice retired from the Department (HDH site) in 1992.



TA Opportunities Fall 2021 & Winter 2022

Graduate Students in Pathology are invited to apply for Teaching Assistantships for several undergraduate course for the 2021-2022 academic year.

For more information:


Funding new frontiers in research

Six research projects at Queen’s have received funding from the New Frontiers in Research Fund’s (NFRF) 2020 Exploration competition, a program that encourages scholars to take risks, and that fosters discoveries and innovations that could have significant impacts on our world.

Tumours that arise throughout the body called neuroendocrine neoplasms (NENs) cause metastatic disease in up to 50 per cent of patients, giving those diagnosed months to years to survive. However, the molecular basis of highly variable clinical outcomes is poorly understood. Neil Renwick (Pathology and Molecular Medicine), Kathrin Tyryshkin (School of Computing) and collaborators have proposed a radical new way to investigate NENs. The researchers propose using graph neural network models, typically used in computer science, to investigate the gene networks that drive or mediate tumor aggressiveness. The understanding of these molecular social networks may improve accurate knowledge of tumour behaviour and even treatment response, improving NEN clinical outcomes.

Queen’s researchers will receive $1.5 million ($250,000 per project) from the fund to advance interdisciplinary projects with multiple partners and collaborators. Nationally, the NFRF competition will provide $14.5 million in grants to researchers across Canada, funding 117 projects.

Pharmaceuticals have become contaminants of emerging concern through increased presence in the environment through wastewater, causing great risk to ecosystems and human health. A contributor to this issue is wastewater treatment facilities that are unable to eliminate pharmaceutical ingredients and excreted drug metabolites through their operating systems. Bas Vriens (Geological Sciences and Geological Engineering) and Martin Petkovich (Biomedical and Molecular Sciences) aim to develop new technology that will act as a 'mega-liver', filtering out harmful pharmaceuticals in wastewater treatment facilities in a cost-efficient way to help ensure good health for our communities and environment.