• Senior Scientist Head of Health Informatics
  • Research Head of Retinoblastoma Program, SickKids

Brenda Gallie

Dr. Brenda Gallie is an ophthalmologist who has focused on the rare cancer in children, retinoblastoma. She is Affiliated Faculty in Techna, Senior Scientist at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, Director of the Retinoblastoma Program at SickKids Hospital and Professor of Ophthalmology, Molecular Genetics, and Medical Biophysics, University of Toronto. Dr. Gallie was named Distinguished Scientist of the Canadian Institutes for Health Research and received the Order of Ontario for implementing genetic knowledge in care of children with retinoblastoma across Canada.

Dr. Gallie and her research team for over 30 years has contributed to recognition that cancer is a genetic disease. They detailed mechanisms and mutated genes that predispose patients to multiple cancers, when normal cells mutate to premalignant to cancer. In order to deliver this knowledge to cost-effective health care and improve outcomes, Dr. Gallie founded a not-for-profit company that serves as a model of public-private partnership integrating genome knowledge into patient care. To improve quality of complex care, Dr. Gallie and the Techna Health Informatics Research team have built eCare, a disease-specific point-of-care tool extending the health record, and providing highest quality clinical data for research.

Dr. Gallie has focused on the rare cancer of the eye, retinoblastoma. Not satisfied that only 8% of the affected children lucky to live in developed countries, have access to effective care, she and colleagues initiated One Retinoblastoma World. Relevant local stakeholders develop National Strategies to address research, evidence-based care guidelines and socio-economic hurdles, so that the 8,000 children affected by retinoblastoma each year can all access optimal care. For example, the eCare(retinoblastoma) database is functioning on a national server in Kenya, empowering multidisciplinary care close to home. A Global to Local model is delivering personalized genomics to families in India, China and Africa.