Research in Urology
Overview of Activity
DR. SIMONE CHEVALIER
MUHC Glen, Research Institute
Montreal, Quebec H4A 3J1
Urologic cancers, voiding dysfunction, urinary calculus disease, erectile dysfunction and infertility affect millions of people every year. These diseases are at the center of the research conducted across the Urology Research Laboratories of the McGill University Division of Urology.
The doors of the first modern urology research laboratory opened at the Royal Victoria Hospital (RVH) in 1984 under the initiative of Dr Mostafa Elhilali, the former Head of the Urology Division, and Dr Claude Gagnon, former scientific director. The RVH research space grew progressively to recruit additional scientists as faculty members. The emphasis remained reproduction and male infertility. Ten years later two new research facilities were created, one at the Jewish General Hospital (JGH; 1993) and the other at the Montreal General Hospital (MGH; 1994) to focus on voiding dysfunction and urologic oncology, respectively.
In 2004, Dr Armen Aprikian accepted the chairmanship of the Urology Division and appointed Dr. Simone Chevalier as the McGill Urology Director of Research. Recruitment and growth have continued to this day withe the current research group comprising over fifty full time individuals actively participating in research projects. The research faculty includes 7 full-time scientists holding Ph.D. degrees and 7 surgeon-scientists hired in faculty positions, one of the largest and diversified groups of scientists primarily appointed within a university division or department of urology in Canada. As of February 2015, the RVH and MGH Urology research teams will be relocated in the new largest ever CFI-Funded Research Institute (RI) of the McGill University Hospital Centre (MUHC).
The principle within each research team is to have basic scientists forming a nucleus of investigators with whom clinical scientists interact, thereby enabling a whole array of fundamental, translational and clinically-oriented research projects to be conducted in complementarity. Projects cover a wide range of urologic disorders, from male infertility to sexual differentiation, developmental anomalies , voiding and sexual dysfunctions and malignancies of the prostate, bladder, kidney and testis. They are multidisciplinary in nature and offer training, both specialized and broad, through the use of the most recent and modern techniques of molecular biology, biochemistry, pharmacology, physiology, pathology, clinical epidemiology and health economics. Faculty members supervise graduate students enrolled in master and doctorate programs at McGill University as well as hosting students, visiting professors from abroad, along with clinical post-doctoral fellows and Urology residents. Adding to this are a group of very well skilled research associates, assistants and technicians, all contributing to the success of Urology Research at McGill. Projects encompass signal transduction pathways, regulation of genes and their products, development of new diagnostic and therapeutic tools, and epidemiologic and outcomes research. Clinical trials link mechanistic studies to urologic diseases in a bench to bedside multidisciplinary approach.
The McGill Urology Division is at the forefront of urology research in Canada. It has reached an international status through its energetic and innovative faculty researchers conducting original scientific projects. The quest for new knowledge and application to therapy is the leitmotiv of urology researchers at McGill.