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Internationally-acclaimed new recruit named Centre of Excellence Chair at Peter Munk Cardiac Centre
The Peter Munk Cardiac Centre (PMCC) is pleased to announce Dr. Michael Gollob's appointment as the new Chair of the Centre of Excellence in Molecular Medicine.
In this role, Dr. Gollob, who joined the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre in September 2014, will ensure that the PMCC further advances the personalizing of patient care by integrating traditional clinical information, including imaging, with genetic, molecular, cellular and physiological data. The hope is that a better understanding of the molecular signature of a patient's cardiovascular disease, will enable doctors to design, develop and evaluate unique therapies for individual patients with heart failure, valve disease, aortic aneurysms and other cardiovascular diseases.
"We spent the better part of three years recruiting Dr. Gollob to join the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre and lead the groundbreaking work being done to better understand the genetic reasons for electrical malfunctions of the heart or irregular heartbeats," says Dr. Kumar Nanthakumar, Director of Electrophysiology at the PMCC.
Dr. Gollob arrives to the PMCC from the University of Ottawa Heart Institute, where he was the Director of both the Inherited Arrhythmia Clinic and the Arrhythmia Research Laboratory. Additionally, he was an Associate Professor in the Departments of Medicine and Cellular and Molecular Medicine at the University of Ottawa.
"We are thrilled to have landed a nationally and internationally sought-after physician and researcher to grow our heritable arrhythmia program, which is growing exponentially as the number of patients diagnosed with inherited heart rhythm disorders increases with no other organized heritable arrhythmia program for all of greater Toronto," says Dr. Nanthakumar.
"The Peter Munk Cardiac Centre represents the pinnacle of academic environments, with a strong group of clinicians and researchers at the forefront of patient care and research innovation," says Dr. Gollob. "I am looking forward to contributing to the academic pursuits of an already very strong and reputable team."
As a Clinical Electrophysiologist with a research focus on the genetic and physiological elements of cardiac arrhythmia (irregular heart rhythm) syndromes and the common arrhythmia of atrial fibrillation, Dr. Gollob will also assume the role of Research Director at the PMCC's Heritable Arrhythmia Clinic.
"My main interest, both clinically and in research, revolves around atrial fibrillation, now known to have a strong genetic basis, and inherited sudden death syndromes," explains Dr. Gollob, whose former research laboratory identified genes behind sudden death in young individuals and atrial fibrillation. "In our group, I hope to provide a cell-to-bedside focus to our understanding of genetically-based arrhythmia syndromes."
"Having Dr. Gollob's internationally-acclaimed expertise added to our incredible roster of leading physicians who specialize in the electric wiring of the heart, further bolsters our knowledge and experience base here at the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre. His presence will also support with recruitment of young electrophysiologists from all over the world who will want to continue to come here to learn from the best."
Dr. Gollob obtained an undergraduate degree in molecular genetics at the University of Toronto, graduating as a Gold Medallist, followed by his Doctor of Medicine at the same institution. He is the recipient of numerous awards and scholarships, including the Mid-Career Scientist Award from the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario, and holds peer-reviewed research funding from the Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR). In addition, Dr. Gollob Chaired the first guideline document outlining the appropriate use of genetic testing for cardiac diseases associated with a risk of sudden death --- on behalf of the Canadian Cardiovascular Society,.
"My dedication to research is based on the following principle: Almost everything we do in the care of our patients, from the choice of specific drug therapies or intervening with a procedure, is based upon a research discovery, tried and tested in research protocols," says Dr. Gollob. "An institution cannot claim greatness unless they are at the forefront of both clinical care and research innovation."
Despite all his academic and professional accolades, Dr. Gollob is quick to answer when asked what accomplishment he is most proud of: "Raising two wonderful boys and spending quality time with my family."