Rebecca Craufurd Auer, MSc, MD, FRCSC
SPECIALTY AND TITLE
Director of Cancer Research and Senior Scientist, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute
Professor, Department of Surgery and Department of BMI, University of Ottawa
The Ottawa Hospital
The University of Ottawa
AREA OF RESEARCH
Dr. Auer leads a translational research program focused on understanding the promotion of metastatic disease in the perioperative period, following surgical stress. She had defined a mediating role for Myeloid-Derived Suppressor Cells and effector Natural Killer and T cells in the cancer recurrence and the development of postoperative metastases. Using surgically relevant preclinical animal models, Dr. Auer has identified candidate immunotherapies capable of counteracting the effects of surgery and, based on these discoveries, has led six translational clinical trials of perioperative cancer therapies based on this preclinical research.
MAJOR CONTRIBUTIONS TO SCIENCE AND/OR HEALTH CARE DELIVERY
Dr. Auer holds a Tier 1 Clinical Research Chair in Perioperative Cancer Therapeutics. Over the last 15 years, her research program has convincingly demonstrated the contribution of postoperative immune dysfunction to cancer recurrence and metastases, has delineated key molecular mechanisms responsible for it, and has targeted these mechanisms through national translational clinical trials. Through this work, and because of her role as both a practicing surgical oncologist, translational scientist and clinical trialist, she has built an internationally unique clinical trial platform to enable ongoing studies of perioperative therapies.
Dr. Auer has authored over 100 peer-reviewed publications and received over $23 million dollars in peer-reviewed funding to support her work. Dr. Auer is also an international leader in surgical oncology, having served on the executive of the Gi Steering Committee at the National Institute of Health, the Clinical Trials Committee with the Canadian Cancer Trials Group. The International Committee with the Society of Surgical Oncology and Chair of the Research Committee with the Canadian Association of General Surgeons, among others.