Obstetrics & Gynecology

Gynecological Oncology Research

This division currently has five gynecological oncologists: Dr. Valerie Capstick, Dr. Jeanelle Sabourin, Dr. Alexandra Schepansky, Dr. Helen Steed, and Dr. Tiffany Wells.

Research in this division includes participation in clinical trials sponsored by the National Cancer Institute of Canada Clinical Trials Group (NCIC CTG), the Princess Margaret Hospital (PMH) Consortium and various pharmaceutical companies. Current clinical trials focus on new drug treatments for ovarian and endometrial cancer as well as surgical management of early cervical cancer.

The Gynecological Oncology division also collaborates with basic science researchers in the Department of Oncology.  This includes translational studies investigating new targets for the early detection and treatment of ovarian cancer as well as molecular mechanisms underlying ovarian tumorigenesis.

Clinical Research Collaborations

Significant clinical collaborations in this division include:

  • Ovarian Cancer Research Team

    Dr. Helen Steed, Dr. Yangxin Fu (Experimental Oncology), Dr. Cheng-Han Lee (Pathology), Dr. Lynn Postovit (Sawin-Baldwin Chair in Ovarian Cancer), and Dr. Anthony Noujam (Legacy Oncology Chair).
  • Alberta Cancer Research Biobank (ACRB)

    Collection of tissue samples intraoperatively for cancer research.

Representative Publications

  1. RUNX3 contributes to carboplatin resistance in epithelial ovarian cancer cells. Barghout SH, Zepeda N, Vincent K, Azad AK, Xu Z, Yang C, Steed H, Postovit LM, Fu Y. Gynecol Oncol. 2015 Sep;138(3):647-55. doi: 10.1016/j.ygyno.2015.07.009. Epub 2015 Jul 15.PMID:26186909

  2. Notch activation augments nitric oxide/soluble guanylyl cyclase signaling in immortalized ovarian surface epithelial cells and ovarian cancer cells.

    El-Sehemy A, Chang AC, Azad AK, Gupta N, Xu Z, Steed H, Karsan A, Fu Y. Cell Signal. 2013 Dec;25(12):2780-7. doi: 10.1016/j.cellsig.2013.09.008. Epub 2013 Sep 13. PMID: 24041655

  3. Notch3 induces epithelial-mesenchymal transition and attenuates carboplatin-induced apoptosis in ovarian cancer cells. Gupta N, Xu Z, El-Sehemy A, Steed H, Fu Y. Gynecol Oncol. 2013 Jul;130(1):200-6. doi: 10.1016/j.ygyno.2013.03.019. Epub 2013 Mar 29. PMID: 23542683

  4. Combined methotrexate-dactinomycin: an effective therapy for low-risk gestational trophoblastic neoplasia. Eiriksson L, Wells T, Steed H, Schepansky A, Capstick V, Hoskins P, Pike J, Swenerton K. Gynecol Oncol. 2012 Mar;124(3):553-7. doi: 10.1016/j.ygyno.2011.10.036. Epub 2011 Nov 9. PMID: 22079360

  5. Assessment of outcomes in surgically staged I/II endometrial adenocarcinoma patients treated with postoperative vaginal vault radiotherapy only. Eiriksson L, Cuartero J, Steed H, Pearcey R, Capstick V, Schepansky A, Faught W, Dundas G. Int J Gynecol Cancer. 2010 Nov;20(8):1356-62. doi: 10.1111/IGC.0b013e3181f21c4d. PMID: 21051977

  6. Urine metabolite analysis offers potential early diagnosis of ovarian and breast cancers. Slupsky CM, Steed H, Wells TH, Dabbs K, Schepansky A, Capstick V, Faught W, Sawyer MB. Clin Cancer Res. 2010 Dec 1;16(23):5835-41. doi: 10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-10-1434. Epub 2010 Oct 18. PMID: 20956617

  7. A population-based study of the determinants of physical activity in ovarian cancer survivors. Stevinson C, Tonkin K, Capstick V, Schepansky A, Ladha AB, Valance JK, Faught W, Steed H, Courneya KS. J Phys Act Health. 2009 May;6(3):339-46. PMID: 19564663

  8. Physical activity in ovarian cancer survivors: associations with fatigue, sleep, and psychosocial functioning. Stevinson C, Steed H, Faught W, Tonkin K, Vallance JK, Ladha AB, Schepansky A, Capstick V, Courneya KS. Int J Gynecol Cancer. 2009 Jan;19(1):73-8. doi: 10.1111/IGC.0b013e31819902ec. PMID: 19258945

  9. Physical activity preferences of ovarian cancer survivors. Stevinson C, Capstick V, Schepansky A, Tonkin K, Vallance JK, Ladha AB, Steed H, Faught W, Courneya KS. Psychooncology. 2009 Apr;18(4):422-8. doi: 10.1002/pon.1396. PMID: 19243089

  10. Suprapubic or urethral catheter: what is the optimal method of bladder drainage after radical hysterectomy? Wells TH, Steed H, Capstick V, Schepanksy A, Hiltz M, Faught W. J Obstet Gynaecol Can. 2008 Nov;30(11):1034-8. PMID: 19126285