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Developmental & Stem Cell Biology

Guidos lab

Welcome to the Laboratory of Dr. Cynthia Guidos, PhD

Dr. Cynthia Guidos obtained her B.Sc. and PhD degrees at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, did post-doctoral training with Dr. Irving Weissman at Stanford University, and established her independent research program at the SickKids Research Institute in 1991.

Her research program is focused on defining mechanisms of lymphocyte development, and how defects in this process cause immune-mediated diseases and cancer. In recent years, Guidos has focused on elucidating how signaling via Notch receptors controls lymphocyte cell fate decisions and immune homeostasis.  Her work has demonstrated critical roles for Lunatic Fringe and Manic Fringe, glycosyltransferases that modify the extra-cellular domain of Notch receptors, in strengthening Notch1 and Notch2 activation during T and B cell development. Her latest work revealed that interleukin-7 collaborates with Notch1 signaling to coordinate proliferation, differentiation and TCRA recombination during thymocyte β-selection. Current efforts are focused on characterizing Notch functions in development and homeostasis of innate T cells and their roles in auto-inflammatory disease.

Guidos also has led and collaborated in large-scale projects that seek to define and understand how normal developmental programs become subverted during the development of leukemia. Together with Dr. Jayne Danska she established novel murine models of pre-B cell leukemia, the most common cancer of childhood, and used these models to identify the SYK tyrosine kinase as a new therapeutic target in B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (B-ALL).

 Guidos has a longstanding interest and expertise in flow and mass cytometry and serves as Scientific Director of the largest research flow facility in Canada. She has established novel phospho-flow cytometry platforms for high through-put discovery of biomarkers that report on leukemia responsiveness to pathway-targeted in B-ALL and in acute myeloid leukemia. More recently, she developed "next-generation" mass spectrometry-coupled flow cytometry to enable more highly dimensional profiling of immune cell subsets and functions within heterogeneous populations, such as peripheral blood and tissue samples. Mass cytometry can quantify up to 40 markers per cell, and she is using this technology to identify immune biomarkers that distinguish between healthy and diseased patients, subtypes within a disease category, and effective responses to immune therapies.