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Leadership Message

We are pleased to present the 2022 Annual Report for the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre at the University Health Network (UHN). The third year of the COVID-19 pandemic continued to present challenges; yet in spite of this, we not only survived, but thrived, thanks to the incredibly hard work of our staff, researchers, clinicians, learners, supporters and patients.

As one of our patients said, together we are "Always Moving Forward."

We survived a major Omicron COVID wave, the largest snow storm since 1946, a trucker’s protest that shut down access, multiple floods and a complete power outage. We thank our facilities, IT, transport and security teams for guiding us through these critical moments.

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In June our staff also rose to the occasion and successfully helped complete the UHN installation of the new EPIC electronic health record transformation. Thanks to the patience, positivity and cooperation of our staff during those difficult first few weeks, we quickly adapted to the new system.

Among our other highlights:

  • As the pandemic restrictions were loosened, by late year, 55 – 60,000 patient appointments per month were being accommodated;
  • The Princess Margaret was able to assist patients from across Canada by accepting leukemia and allogeneic bone marrow transplant patients from other academic centres in Ontario and New Brunswick, as well as patients from Newfoundland in need of radiation, and CAR-T cell patients from British Columbia, Saskatchewan and Alberta;
  • We thank our surgery teams who worked overtime and Saturdays to catch up on the backlog of oncology cases. Our teams in nursing, pharmacy, pathology, lab, imaging and Allied Health handled very high volumes in our chemotherapy suites, and out patient clinics with calm and poise;
  • The Facilities Management teams started much needed renovations of the PM Lodge, built a new Head and Neck Clinic, launched a major refresh of the GI clinic and helped steer submissions to the Ministry of Health for Canada’s first proton radiation facility, as well as the next phase of the Stem Cell 2 construction expanding our cellular therapy capacity.
  • Our Global Oncology team added Cancer Centers in Kenya, Australia and Malaysia to our list of partners, and the Southlake Stronach Cancer Centre became the first member of the PM Cancer Care Network;
  • We opened our first sexual health clinic for patients experiencing sexual dysfunction resulting from their diagnosis and treatment – a critical step towards improving cancer care across UHN, and the country.

We also saw another impressive year of research; 22 per cent of our patients enrolled in clinical trials; our scientists published numerous breakthrough discoveries and won many prestigious awards including the 2022 Canada Gairdner International Award, which went to Dr. John Dick for the discovery and characterization of leukemic stem cells.

Among our research highlights:

  • Our researchers discovered the potential for a new therapeutic pathway to treat metastatic colorectal cancer using the technology behind some of the most successful COVID-19 vaccines;
  • We are leading a universal genetic testing program with 1,300 patients at the Breast Site Group;
  • Our researchers identified a potential target for a common form of blood cancer known as acute myeloid leukemia (AML);
  • UHN clinicians and scientists began planning to pinpoint cancerous tumours in a world first-in-human trial using diagnostics called porphysomes, organic nanoparticles that show as red when exposed to blue light.

As always, The Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation continued to fuel our success through its philanthropic efforts that help make our programs, research, and innovations possible.

Of note this past year:

  • La Fondation Emmanuelle Gattuso and The Slaight Family Foundation made a spectacular $50-million transformational gift. Given in honour of the late Allan Slaight, Canadian business legend and philanthropist, this gift will support discovery research by allowing researchers to work in creative and unconventional ways.
  • The Paula and Rodger Riney Foundation generously committed $9.2-million in support of multiple myeloma research. The grant is the first in Canada from the U.S.-based Foundation, and will fund four projects with potential clinical impact using novel therapies being developed at the PM.

Finally, a big shout out to the Foundation for relaunching the in-person Ride, Walk, Journey, and Road Hockey to Conquer Cancer, which together raised $30-million. Thank you to all of our donors and supporters for your incredible generosity!

And finally, our immense gratitude to our staff, volunteers, and learners, many from across the globe. Your unflagging optimism and dedication make a significant difference to patients, their families, and our colleagues.

A. Keith Stewart, MB, ChB
VP Cancer, UHN, Director
Princess Margaret Cancer Centre

Aaron D. Schimmer, MD, PhD
Research Director
Princess Margaret Cancer Centre ​​​​​​​​​​​​

Princess Margaret Cancer Centre - Annual Report 2022 Click Here to View

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Past Reports

Princess Margaret Cancer Centre Annual Reports


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Last modified: 11/2/2023 5:44 AM
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