Former Strategy Board Chairs

  • Dr Alain Beaudet
    Past Chair

    Dr Alain Beaudet


    Dr Alain Beaudet, MD, PhD is the former President of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR). Before joining CIHR in July 2008, Dr Beaudet was the President and CEO of the Fonds de la recherche en santé du Québec, a position held since 2004.
    Dr Beaudet has received numerous grants and distinctions: in 2004 he received the Prix Adrien-Pouliot by the Association francophone pour le savoir; in 2007 France bestowed the Order of Academic Palms distinguished Officer’s award, and he was made Doctor honoris causa of Université Pierre et Marie Curie. In 2011, he became a Knight of the National Order of Quebec, and in 2012, he was awarded the Australian Society for Medical Research Medal.
    Dr Beaudet earned a medical degree and a PhD in neuroscience from the Université de Montréal. He did postdoctoral training at the Centre d’études nucléaires in Saclay, France and the University of Zurich’s Brain Research Institute in Switzerland.

  • Prof Xuetao Cao
    Past Chair

    Prof Xuetao Cao


    Prof Xuetao Cao (PhD) is the President of the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences (CAMS), Beijing, China. He has been Professor and Director of National Key Laboratory of Medical Immunology, China since 2006 and was elected as member of Chinese Academy of Engineering in 2005. He is also the Vice-President of FIMSA and member of 54th IUIS committee.

    His major interests are immunobiology of APCs (dendritic cells, macrophages), TLR signaling and immune regulation, cancer immunotherapy and gene therapy. His group identified a new regulatory dendritic cell (DC) subset and found that splenic stroma could drive mature DC to differentiate into regulatory DC. His group proposed several new approaches for DC-based immunotherapy and gene therapy of cancer, and completed the Phase II clinical trail of DC vaccine approved by China FDA for the treatment of advanced colon cancer patients. Recently he has been investigating the mechanisms for immune recognition and TLR signaling.

    As corresponding author, he published 196 original papers in peer-reviewed, SCI-cited journals including Nat Immunol, Cancer Cell, Immunity, J Exp Med, Blood, J Biol Chem, J Immunol, Cancer Res, etc.

  • Dr Susan Shurin
    Past Chair

    Dr Susan Shurin


    Susan B. Shurin, M.D., is the Deputy Director, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI). She served as Acting Director of NHLBI from December 2009 through August 2012. She is responsible for scientific and administrative management of the biomedical research and training activities of the NHLBI. The NHLBI, third largest of the 27 Institutes and Centers at NIH, has an annual budget of over $3 billion, and manages a complex portfolio of basic, clinical, translational and epidemiologic research conducted on the NIH campus and across the globe.

    Dr. Shurin received her education and medical training at Harvard University and the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and served as professor of Pediatrics and Oncology at Case Western Reserve University (CWRU), director of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology at Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital, and vice president and secretary of the Corporation at CWRU in Cleveland, Ohio. Her laboratory research focused on the physiology of phagocyte function, iron overload and other aspects of hematology and oncology. She has had leadership roles in multiple professional organizations.

  • Dr Abdallah Daar
    Past Chair

    Dr Abdallah Daar


    Abdallah. S. Daar (D.Phil, FRSC, FRCP, FRCS, FRCSEd) is Chief Science and Ethics Officer of Grand Challenges Canada and Founding Chair of GACD (2009-11). He is also Professor of Public Health Sciences and of Surgery at University of Toronto, Director of Ethics and Commercialization at the Sandra Rotman Centre and Chair of the Advisory Board of the United Nations University International Institute of Global Health.

    Dr Daar is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, the Academy of Sciences for the Developing World (TWAS), the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences, the New York Academy of Sciences and a Senior Fellow of Massey College, University of Toronto. He is a member of UNESCO’s International Bioethics Committee and of the Ethics Committee of the Human Genome Organization. His current research interests are in ways of avoiding knowledge divides and in the exploration of how genomics and other biotechnologies can be used effectively to ameliorate global health inequities.

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