Recognizing successes of the program’s trainees and their continued work spanning the spectrum of drug discovery to drug use and management in populations, the DSECT Program recently encouraged alumni to apply for a DSECT Alumni Recognition Award. We are proud of all alumni of the program and are happy to celebrate recipients of the award along with the great work they are doing to advance the field of drug safety and effectiveness.
DSECT Alumni Recognition Award Recipients
Catrina Loucks, Assistant Professor and Investigator, University of British Columbia and BC Children’s Hospital Research Institute
Dr. Catrina Loucks is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pediatrics and the Department of Anesthesiology, Pharmacology & Therapeutics at the University of British Columbia. Additionally, she is an Investigator at the BC Children’s Hospital Research Institute. She has experience uncovering genetic causes for rare disorders from her MSc work at the University of Calgary, under the supervision of Drs. Micheil Innes and Jillian Parboosingh. She then sought to explore functional impacts of uncovered genetic mutations by pursuing a PhD under the supervision of Dr. Michel Leroux at Simon Fraser University, using the simple roundworm, C. elegans, as a model. As a postdoctoral fellow at the University of British Columbia, Catrina worked with Dr. Bruce Carleton and the Canadian Pharmacogenomics Network for Drug Safety to understand how genetic variation contributes to variable responses to medication. Currently, she is working to improve pain management in children by identifying genetic factors that can help predict an individual’s need for, and subsequent response to, specific analgesics. Additionally, she is working to translate genetic discoveries into improvements in clinical care. Together, her work will allow for more individualized risk-benefit decisions for pain management in children, while also contributing to the discovery of novel components of pain response pathways that could pave the way for improved pain management strategies with increased safety and effectiveness.
Faizan Khan, Epidemiologist, National Advisory Committee on Immunization, Public Health Agency of Canada
Dr. Faizan Khan completed both his MSc (2015-17) and PhD (2018-22) degrees in Epidemiology from the University of Ottawa. He was DSECT Stream 1 trainee during the 2016-2017 academic year. His graduate research was focused on evaluating the long-term safety and effectiveness of anticoagulants for venous thromboembolism (VTE). His thesis work published in The BMJ and Annals of Internal Medicine has influenced policy and clinical practice on how long to treat patients with unprovoked VTE. Faizan is now an Epidemiologist for the National Advisory Committee on Immunization Secretariat at the Public Health Agency of Canada, as well as a CIHR Health System Impact Postdoctoral Fellow at Alberta Health Services Critical Care Strategic Clinical Network and University of Calgary, working to improve care and outcomes for patients discharged from the intensive care unit.
Jennifer Donnan, Assistant Professor, Memorial University of Newfoundland
Dr. Jennifer Donnan is an Assistant Professor at Memorial University’s School of Pharmacy. Her research program is primarily focused on issues related to cannabis policy and developing and evaluating a harm reduction cannabis education strategy for youth and young adults. She works with a collaborative team of researchers, stakeholders and citizens as part of the Cannabis Health Evaluation and Research Partnership (CHERP). Jennifer is a two-time alumni of the DSECT program.
Jennifer Watt, Assistant Professor, University of Toronto; Academic Geriatrician/Clinical Scientist, St. Michael’s Hospital; Scientist, Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute
Dr. Jennifer Watt, MD, PhD, FRCPC, is a geriatrician and clinician-scientist at St. Michael’s Hospital and an assistant professor in the Faculty of Medicine and Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto. She participated in the 2016-2017 DSECT program while she was completing a PhD in clinical epidemiology and health care research at the University of Toronto. In addition to providing clinical care to older inpatients and outpatients at St. Michael’s Hospital, Dr. Watt studies the safety and efficacy of interventions and improves research methods used to conduct research involving older adults.
Kaley Hayes, Assistant Professor, Brown University School of Public Health, Department of Health Services, Policy and Practice
Kaley Hayes (DSECT Stream 1 and 2 Alumni) is an Assistant Professor of Health Services, Policy, and Practice at Brown University’s School of Public Health in Rhode Island, United States. Dr. Hayes received her Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) degree from the University of Pittsburgh. She earned her Ph.D. in Epidemiology at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto in Toronto, Canada. She is a pharmacoepidemiologist whose research aims to optimize the use of medications in older adults using population-based data sources. She specializes in causal inference methods to better understand the safety and effectiveness of chronic medications for osteoporosis and diabetes in older adults.
Michael Fralick, Assistant Professor & Clinician Scientist, University of Toronto & Sinai Health/University Health Network
Mike is a board-certified General Internist in Canada and the US. He is Clinician Scientist at Sinai Health in Toronto and Assistant Professor at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Medicine. He also works clinically at the Sault Area Hospital in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario. Mike completed his medical degree and internal medicine residency training at the University of Toronto; his Master’s of Science in Clinical Epidemiology at Harvard University, including a research fellowship at the Division of Pharmacoepidemiology and Pharmacoeconomics at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital; and his PhD at the University of Toronto, with a focus on the intersection of supervised machine learning and pharmacoepidemiology. His primary research focus to date has been understanding the safety and effectiveness of medications for adults living with diabetes. He co-led research that was among the first to confirm that SGLT2 inhibitors are associated with an increased risk of diabetic ketoacidosis. In early 2022, he launched SGLT2Rx.com, a freely accessible online tool that clinicians can use to weigh the risks and benefits of these and other diabetes medications. Mike lives in Toronto with his wife Brittany, who is a veterinarian.
Mina Tadrous, Assistant Professor, University of Toronto Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy
Mina is an assistant professor at the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Toronto. He is a pharmacoepidemiologist and pharmacist and investigator with the Ontario Drug Policy Research Network (ODPRN). He completed a PhD in pharmacoepidemiology at the University of Toronto and previously completed a Masters in Health Outcomes and Policy Research at the University of Tennessee, and a Doctor of Pharmacy at Albany College of Pharmacy. He also completed a pharmacy residency in Drug Information and Health Outcomes at the University of Tennessee and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Mina’s research interests lie in developing real-world evidence to inform provincial and national drug policy and the post-marketing surveillance of medications. He has a keen interest in leveraging big data to answer important healthcare questions. Specifically, he is driven to ensure the appropriate and safe use of medications and the sustainability of public drug programs.
Shanna Trenaman, Assistant Professor, Dalhousie University
Shanna participated in the DSECT program during her Master’s in Applied Health Services Research in 2011. Since then Shanna received her PhD from the Department of Medicine at Dalhousie University in 2020 and completed a Canadian Consortium on Neurodegeneration in Aging funded postdoctoral fellowship under the supervision of Dr. Kenneth Rockwood. Presently Dr. Shanna Trenaman is an Assistant Professor at the Dalhousie University College of Pharmacy where she studies appropriate drug use in older adults from the perspectives of pharmacology, epidemiology, pharmacoepidemiology, and health services research.