Behind the Breakthrough
Overcoming ‘impostor syndrome’ and helping the elderly live well, with Dr. Jennifer Campos

Overcoming ‘impostor syndrome’ and helping the elderly live well, with Dr. Jennifer Campos

November 12, 2019

Growing up, the death of Dr. Jenny Campos’ grandfather from a preventable fall while carrying groceries up a flight of stairs shook her family to the core. Today, it is the driving force behind her research in falls and driving collision prevention in the elderly. By simulating real life challenges in Toronto Rehabilitation Institute’s renowned Challenging Environment Assessment Lab (CEAL), Dr. Campos is finding ways to help older adults live well. In this episode, Dr. Campos delves into her pioneering work with virtual reality and motion simulation technologies, how she has learned to find a work-life balance in academia, and why it’s so important to mentor the next generation of young scientists in STEM.

Meet the cancer code breaker, Dr. Mathieu Lupien

Meet the cancer code breaker, Dr. Mathieu Lupien

November 5, 2019

In the battle to defeat cancer, award-winning UHN researcher Dr. Mathieu Lupien is a modern-day version of the Bletchley Park World War Two codebreakers. Dr. Lupien searches the human genome, trying to crack the origin of how and why cancer starts. He knows deciphering that enigmatic code is one of the keys that will lead to a cure for cancer. He explains how the human genome is like a road map to the inner workings of what makes us, well, us—and the many ways cancer disrupts that journey, and why researchers are now looking at so-called “junk DNA” for the source to cancer’s origins.

Dr. Lupien also talks about the Terry Fox loonie he carries in his pocket at all times as a reminder of the commitment and importance of the work done in his lab, how a line in a TV show he watched as a child in Quebec has fuelled his research career,” and his advice for kids who want to go into science.

Robotics, rehabilitation therapy and learning from failure, with Dr. Milos Popovic

Robotics, rehabilitation therapy and learning from failure, with Dr. Milos Popovic

October 29, 2019

In this episode, we sit down with award-winning scientist Dr. Milos Popovic to hear about his transformational shift from aerospace engineering to rehabilitation research, and how it led to his invention of a medical device that restores upper limb mobility to people with paralysis caused by spinal cord injury or stroke.

Challenging the meaning of palliative care, with Dr. Camilla Zimmermann

Challenging the meaning of palliative care, with Dr. Camilla Zimmermann

October 22, 2019

In this episode of Behind the Breakthrough, Dr. Camilla Zimmermann talks about how her research has helped change the practice of palliative care from end-of-life care to a more wholistic approach that answers the question, “What do you want to do with the rest of your life?” Dr. Zimmermann refers to herself and her team as “an extra layer of support” to those living with a terminal illness. We hear about how the practice has evolved and the vast potential of a research field that’s still largely in its infancy. Dr. Zimmermann also reveals how the death of her parents when she was a teenager shaped her career, her initial reluctance to admit to colleagues her desire to be a palliative care specialist, and how stigma still hangs on the concept of what is palliative care.

Chronic pain and scientific baseball, with Dr. Karen Davis

Chronic pain and scientific baseball, with Dr. Karen Davis

October 11, 2019

In this episode, neuroscientist Dr. Karen Davis talks to us about pain. What is it? Can we predict it? What does personality-type have to do with it? She touches on her advancements in pain research, and why her and her team are really scientific baseball players. Play ball!  

Heart failure, Artificial Intelligence and a near-death experience, with Dr. Heather Ross

Heart failure, Artificial Intelligence and a near-death experience, with Dr. Heather Ross

September 10, 2019

In the first episode of Behind the Breakthrough, we hear from cardiologist Dr. Heather Ross about her pioneering work with artificial intelligence (A.I.), how she handles failure—especially after two rejections from medical school—and how a brush with death brought her closer to her patients than ever before. Dr. Heather Ross is a world-renowned cardiologist, division head of cardiology at Sinai Health System and UHN’s Peter Munk Cardiac Centre (PMCC), and director of the Ted Rogers Centre for Heart Research at the PMCC. Dr. Ross is pioneering research in artificial intelligence to improve the lives of patients suffering heart failure.