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Dr. Tony Pawson Inducted into Canadian Medical Hall of Fame

April 26, 2006 — Dr. Tony Pawson of Mount Sinai Hospital's Samuel Lunenfeld Research Institute (SLRI) is one of this year's five inductees into the Canadian Medical Hall of Fame.

Pawson Sketch
Dr. Tony Pawson as drawn by Irma Coucill

A senior investigator and former director of the SLRI, Dr. Pawson's work has had a profound impact on biomedical research. His ground-breaking studies have focused on the signals that are transmitted between cells in the human body and how this forms a pattern of communication. By understanding cellular communication, scientists can track how the patterns of communication can "break down" in conditions such as heart disease and immune system deficiencies.

"This is a superlative honour for Tony to be recognized for his tremendous contributions to Canadian medical research," says Dr. Jim Woodgett, Director of the SLRI.

Dr. Pawson's research has created a new understanding of the role of communication signals between cells in the development of cancer. He discovered that a certain protein molecule plays a critical role in transmitting cancer-inducing signals in malignant cells. This research has led to the development of new drugs to stop the proliferation of cancer cells.

As the author of more than 300 scientific articles, Dr. Pawson is among the world's most frequently-cited scientists in biomedical research. He has received a number of awards including the Michael Smith Prize in Health Research from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Gairdner Foundation International Award and the Heineken Prize from the Royal Netherlands Academy.