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Assistant Professor Departments of Pathology and Immunology
Dr. Ellison received her PhD from the Department of Immunology at the University of Manitoba. She is did clinical laboratory post-doctoral training in the HLA Laboratory at CancerCare Manitoba and became certified by the American Board of Histocompatibility and Immunogenetics (Diplomate). She is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pathology at the University of Manitoba, where she also holds a cross appointment in the Department of Immunology. She is also a consultant in the HLA Laboratory at CancerCare Manitoba, which services the Manitoba Blood and Marrow Transplant Program.
Dr. Ellisons s research is focused on understanding the immunological mechanisms underlying the development of graft-versus-host disease (GVHD), a serious complication that may develop following hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). This therapy is used to treat several diseases affecting children, which include certain cancers of the blood, immune deficiency diseases and inborn disorders of metabolisms. Every year 30,000-40,000 HSCTs are performed worldwide and these numbers are increasing at a rate of about 10-20% per year. The need to identify effective ways to prevent and manage GVHD in patients is therefore increasing as well. Dr. Ellison studies interactions between the cells of the donor s immune system and the patient s epithelial cells, which become injured during the development of a graft-versus-host reaction.