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The UHN cardiologist and scientist discusses his journey to help create and test a new diabetes drug which reduces the risk of heart disease.

Air Date: November 24, 2020 | Length: 36:58

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Dr. Mansoor Husain
About the Episode

Almost 20 years ago, a hallway conversation kickstarted Dr. Mansoor Husain’s journey in helping create and test a new diabetes drug that reduces the risk of heart disease. In 2019, the award-winning physician-scientist at the Ted Rogers Centre for Heart Research and Peter Munk Cardiac Centre published the findings of a landmark trial proving the drug’s safety and reduction in cardiovascular-related mortality, bringing a new therapy into the fold for patients with diabetes – who are two to four times more likely to die from cardiovascular problems than those without it.

In this episode of Behind the Breakthrough, Dr. Husain brings the listener into his lab, where he aims to understand more about the molecular mechanisms behind heart disease. He shares how a Nylon experiment in a high school chemistry class sparked his love for science and ultimately led him to medical school, and what keeps him motivated after 25 years as a scientist.

“I believe that being in the clinic makes a better scientist, and being in the lab makes me a better doctor.”

About Dr. Husain

A specialist in cardiovascular disease and nuclear cardiology, Dr. Mansoor Husain is the executive director of the Ted Rogers Centre for Heart Research and a cardiologist at the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre. His past affiliations include leadership positions at the Toronto General Hospital Research Institute, Hypertension Canada and the Heart & Stroke/Richard Lewar Centre of Excellence at the University of Toronto.

Dr. Husain’s extensive research focuses on elucidating the molecular bases of cardiovascular diseases – including diabetes and heart failure – and identifying therapeutic targets involved in pathophysiology. A Heart & Stroke Foundation “career investigator” and Hypertension Canada “senior investigator,” he has been recognized by research prizes from the Clinical Research Society of Toronto, the University of Toronto, the University of Manitoba, and the Ontario Premier’s Research Excellence Award.

Studying medicine at the University of Alberta, Dr. Husain was awarded a gold medal for outstanding merit in 1986. After residencies in internal medicine and cardiology at the University of Toronto, Dr. Husain undertook postdoctoral studies in the department of biology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1993-1997), and the joint program in nuclear medicine at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Husain returned to the University of Toronto in 1997.



Produced By: Emma King | Host: Christian Cote | Audio Editing and Mixing: 217 Audio