Dr. Arezu Jahani-Asl received her Bachelor of Science in 2000 at the University of Toronto, St George campus graduating with distinction. She became a member of Golden Key National Honor Society at the University of Toronto in recognition of scholastic achievements and received Dean’s Honors List in recognition of academic excellence. She then completed a Master of Science degree in Cellular and Molecular Medicine at the University of Ottawa. She studied the molecular mechanisms that regulate PI3K/AKT signaling in the context of chemoresistance in Ovarian Cancer. She performed her research in the laboratory of Dr. Benjamin K. Tsang, in the LOEB Institute, presently Ottawa Hospital Research Institute. Her work was recognized by a University of Ottawa Graduate Trainee Certificate of Merit, in recognition of outstanding research contribution in Ovarian Cancer. Dr. Jahani-Asl received her PhD degree in Neuroscience from the University of Ottawa in 2009. She was the recipient of a CIHR doctorate research award to study underlying molecular mechanisms of neuronal cell death focusing on the role of mitochondrial fission and fusion in acute brain damage in the laboratory of Dr. Ruth Slack.
In 2009, Dr. Jahani-Asl joined the laboratory of Dr. Azad Bonni at Harvard Medical School to pursue postdoctoral training in neurobiology where she studied the molecular mechanisms regulating the pathogenesis of glioblastoma and X-linked mental retardation. Her work was supported by a CIHR postdoctoral fellowship. She furthered these studies in collaboration with the laboratory of Dr. Michael Rudnicki at Ottawa Hospital research Institute.
In July 2015, Dr. Jahani-Asl joined the Faculty of Medicine, Department of Oncology at McGill University with her laboratory located at the Molecular and Regenerative Medicine Axis at the Lady Davis Institute at the Jewish General Hospital in Montreal, Quebec. She was also affiliated with the Departments of Experimental Medicine and Integrated Program in Neuroscience. Dr. Jahani-Asl was promoted to Associate Professor in Feb 2021 at McGill University. Throughout her career at McGill her accomplishments were recognized by Fonds de Recherche du Québec (FRQS) Investigator awards.
Dr. Jahani-Asl joined Faculty of Medicine at the University of Ottawa in 2021 and she is presently an Associate Professor in the Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine and a member of U Ottawa Brain and Mind Institute. She currently has funding from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), The Cancer Research Society (CRS), and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC). In the past, her research has been funded by CIHR, FRQS, CFI, and UK Brain tumour charity.
Dr. Jahani-Asl is presently a member of Board of Reviewing Editors at eLife. She has also contributed extensively to national and international peer review and has served as member of the CIHR fellowship committee member, CIHR Project Grant, New Frontiers in Research Funds (NFRF), Cancer Research Society (CRS), Michael Smith Foundation, Welcome Trust, Swiss National Foundation, and Austrian Science Funds.
Throughout her career, Dr. Jahani-Asl has made great contributions to the field of Neuroscience and Neuro-oncology. Dr. Jahani-Asl’s contributions have appeared in top tier journals including Nature Neuroscience, Molecular Cell, Neuron, Nature Comm, JBC, Human Molecular Genetics and Cell Reports. Her ground-breaking studies on the role of OSMR in glioblastoma pathogenesis and resistance to therapy (Nature Neurosci. 2016; Nature Comm 2020) has received extraordinary coverage in research periodicals (News & Views, e.g., Nature Neurosci.), science Blogs (CIRM California, Neurology Central, Nature Cancer community blog) and various news outlets (e.g., UK Mirror, Montreal Gazette, CTV, Medical News today, Science Daily). Dr. Jahani-asl’s team recently discovered an important role for carbohydrate binding proteins in regulation of cancer stem cells and glioblastoma resistance to therapy (Cell Reports 2021).
In her own laboratory, Dr. Jahani-Asl has provided direct supervision to over 20 trainees, and her trainees have succeeded at the top of their cohorts as evident from their publication, fellowship, awards, best presentations in international and national meetings, and admission to medical schools or securing a career in academia/industry. Dr. Jahani-Asl has been invited for broadcast interviews including Joe Schwarz show, McGill Newsroom, Montreal Gazette, and CTV.