Every day across British Columbia, trainees and researchers at the UBC Faculty of Medicine are turning skills into jobs, investments into discoveries, and discoveries into solutions that are transforming health for everyone.

Ranked among the world’s top medical schools with the fifth-largest MD enrollment in North America, the UBC Faculty of Medicine is a leader in both the science and the practice of medicine. Across British Columbia, more than 12,000 faculty and staff are training the next generation of doctors, health care professionals, and medical researchers, making remarkable discoveries to help create the pathways to better health for our communities at home and around the world.

The UBC Faculty of Medicine offers a diverse array of training opportunities including cutting-edge research experiences in the biosciences, globally recognized population health education, quality health professional training, as well as several certificate and online training options. The Faculty of Medicine is home to more than 1,700 graduate students housed in 20 graduate programs (14 of which offer doctoral research options). Year after year, research excellence in the Faculty of Medicine is supported by investment from funding sources here at home and around the globe, receiving approximately more than $1.8B in total research funding since 2016.

We value our trainees and the creative input they have to scholarly activities at UBC. Our priority is to enable their maximum potential through flexible opportunities that provide a breadth of experiences tailored to their own individual career objectives. We maintain high standards of excellence, and work to create a community of intellectually and socially engaged scholars that work collaboratively with each other, the university, and the world, with the overarching goal of promoting the health of individuals and communities.

 

Research Facilities

UBC Faculty of Medicine provides innovative educational and research programs in the areas of health and life sciences through an integrated and province-wide delivery model in facilities at locations throughout British Columbia.

The Life Sciences Centre is the largest building on the UBC Vancouver campus. Completed in 2004, the $125 million, 52,165 sq metres building was built to accommodate the distributed medical educational program and the Life Sciences Institute.

The Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health (DMCBH), a partnership between the University of British Columbia and Vancouver Coastal Health, unites under one roof research and clinical expertise in neuroscience, psychiatry and neurology in order to accelerate discovery and translate new knowledge into better treatment and prevention strategies. DMCBH has both laboratory and clinical research areas within the Centre proper and in the UBC Hospital Koerner Pavilion. Our core facilities are essential to ongoing collaboration, teaching, and research.

The BC Children's Hospital Research Institute is it the largest research institute of its kind in Western Canada in terms of people, productivity, funding and size. With more than 350,000 square feet of space, the Institute has both 'wet bench' laboratory and 'dry lab' clinical research areas, and other areas to facilitate particular areas of research and training.

Research Highlights

New knowledge and innovation are crucial to successfully identifying, addressing and overcoming the increasingly complex health-related challenges that influence the lives of all of us – in British Columbia, in Canada, and in countries and communities around the globe.

The UBC Faculty of Medicine is recognized nationally and internationally for research innovation that advances knowledge and translates new discoveries to improve the health and well-being of individuals and communities. Research opportunities feature extensive collaborations across other faculties, health institutions and health partners across British Columbia, Canada and internationally.

The Faculty provides and fosters research excellence across the full continuum, from basic science to applied science and then to knowledge implementation, with a focus on precision health; cancer; brain and mental health; heart and lung health; population health; and chronic diseases.

Graduate Degree Programs

Recent Publications

This is an incomplete sample of recent publications in chronological order by UBC faculty members with a primary appointment in the Faculty of Medicine.

 

Recent Thesis Submissions

Doctoral Citations

A doctoral citation summarizes the nature of the independent research, provides a high-level overview of the study, states the significance of the work and says who will benefit from the findings in clear, non-specialized language, so that members of a lay audience will understand it.
Year Citation Program
2018 Dr. Sannan studied the fovea, a region in the retina essential for our central sharp vision. He published novel mutations in patients with abnormal fovea and defined the cellular and molecular cues deriving fovea development in green anoles. The latter has opened a new path of research toward treating the untreatable foveal abnormalities. Doctor of Philosophy in Experimental Medicine (PhD)
2018 Dr. Lam studied the neurobiological basis of mental health problems associated with prenatal alcohol exposure. She found that alcohol exposure increased vulnerability to stress by changing how the brain and endocrine systems regulate emotion and respond to stress. Her work contributes to understanding the connection between early alcohol exposure and mental health. Doctor of Philosophy in Neuroscience (PhD)
2018 Dr. Ghanouni developed a novel client-centred virtual reality gaming program as a therapeutic intervention for children with autism to enhance their socio-emotional skills. This trans-disciplinary project illuminates the role of community as equal partners with researchers during the design and development of products that can meet end users' needs. Doctor of Philosophy in Rehabilitation Sciences (PhD)
2018 Dr. Li identified gene SRRM4 as a powerful driver and therapeutic target for a special type of drug-resistant prostate cancer. This study provides insights into personalized medicine-based strategies for prostate cancer patients and may guide future development of novel therapeutics for drug-resistant prostate cancer. Doctor of Philosophy in Reproductive and Developmental Sciences (PhD)
2018 Dr. McCracken examined how hypertension is currently being treated in Canadians 70 years and older. She subsequently studied the possibility that hypertension treatment patterns are related to polypharmacy, the use of multiple medications, and that too much hypertension treatment may increase specific harms, such as an earlier diagnosis of dementia. Doctor of Philosophy in Experimental Medicine (PhD)
2018 Dr. Lin investigated neural communication between brain regions and how these neuronal connections are related to cognitive performance in Parkinson's Disease and Multiple Sclerosis. The research strengthens our understanding of disease effects in neurological diseases and provides insights to treatment development for cognitive impairments. Doctor of Philosophy in Neuroscience (PhD)
2018 Dr. Kulkarni studied nanoparticles to enable gene therapies for the treatment of liver diseases. Through his research, he overturned the existing paradigm of the structure of these nanoparticles; proposed a novel structure; and re-engineered the nanoparticles for diagnostics and gene therapy applications. Doctor of Philosophy in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (PhD)
2018 Dr. Ko studied brain cells known as astrocytes, and identified a novel protein that mediates calcium signals in them. Findings revealed that the protein is activated by mechanical force, raising interesting possibilities for the role of astrocytes in conditions such as stroke and traumatic brain injury. Doctor of Philosophy in Neuroscience (PhD)
2018 Dr. Andrusiek studied the role of 'chain of survival' interventions used for resuscitation in out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. He used non-experimental designs and different analytic techniques to identify benefits and harms, and showed that there is a critical need for definitively evaluating these interventions using a randomized trial design. Doctor of Philosophy in Population and Public Health (PhD)
2018 Dr. Whitfield studied the machinery that drives the formation of clathrin-coated vesicles, the 'transport vans' of the cell. He identified several new components of this machinery, helping us to understand a fundamental cellular trafficking process implicated in a range of neurological and inflammatory diseases. Doctor of Philosophy in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (PhD)

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