Tommy Michel Alain

Scientist, CHEO Research Institute

I was appointed to the position of Scientist at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario Research Institute (CHEO RI) and Assistant Professor in the Department of Biochemistry, Microbiology and Immunology (BMI) at the University of Ottawa in January 2014. My training is in virology, innate immune responses, cell biology, and oncology. I received my B.Sc. (2000) in Biochemistry from Université Laval and my Ph.D.

(2007) in Medical Science from the University of Calgary. During my Ph.D., I studied the virology and the oncolytic potencies of reovirus, vesicular stomatitis virus, herpes simplex virus and myxoma virus against brain cancers. From 2007 to 2013, I pursued post-doctoral work at McGill University studying mRNA translational control and the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) signaling pathway, linking both viral immunity and oncology research.

My current research in Ottawa focuses on exploiting translation initiation factors and downstream effectors of mTOR complex 1 (mTORC1) to modulate innate immune responses to oncolytic viruses, and to augment the anti-proliferative efficacies of cancer therapeutics.

Related News

Research Projects

  1. Quantitative analysis of SARS-CoV-2 RNA from wastewater solids in communities with low COVID-19 incidence and prevalence


    Can we find COVID-19 markers in the wastewater that will help predict outbreaks?

  2. Induction of an Alternative mRNA 5′ Leader Enhances Translation of the Ciliopathy Gene Inpp5e and Resistance to Oncolytic Virus Infection


    Oncolytic virus infection decouples transcription and translation in cancer cells

  3. Active-site mTOR inhibitors augment HSV1-dICP0 infection in cancer cells via dysregulated eIF4E/4E-BP axis


  4. Battling for Ribosomes: Translational Control at the Forefront of the Antiviral Response


    Viruses battle for control over the cellular protein synthesis machinery

  5. Smac Mimetics Synergize With Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors to Promote Tumour Immunity Against Glioblastoma


    Overall, this combinatorial approach could be highly effective in clinical application as it allows for cooperative and complimentary mechanisms in the immune cell-mediated death of cancer cells.