Michael Olson

Canada Research Chair in Molecular Cell Biology

Tier 1 - 2018-04-01
Toronto Metropolitan University
Canadian Institutes of Health Research

Research summary

The shape of each cell in the human body is determined by a cytoskeleton. This network of interconnected pieces creates a supporting structure that gives cells their physical form. But when the organization of the cytoskeleton is mis-regulated, significant health problems can arise. In cancer patients, changes in cytoskeleton organization can cause cancer cells to break away from the original tumour and spread throughout the body.

As Canada Research Chair in Molecular Cell Biology, Dr. Michael Olson is trying to understand why this occurs in order to stop it from happening. He and his research team are investigating how to reverse cytoskeleton changes that lead to metastasis by using existing drugs and developing new ones to treat cancer and other diseases of cytoskeleton mis-regulation.