Dr. Ben Tsang completed his undergraduate training at Bemidji State University (chemistry), received MSc (Biochemistry) from the University of Iowa, and Ph.D. (Pharmacology) from the University of Ottawa. In 1980, Dr. Tsang joined the University of Ottawa as the Director, Reproductive Biology Unit and initiated a research-intensive academic program in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology. He served as Associate Chair (Research) of the Department and developed a multi-disciplinary reproductive health research program in Ottawa. As the Director of Research of the Ottawa Civic Hospital, he played a central role in research development at the Loeb Medical Research Institute, one of the top health research institutions in Canada, which later became the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute.
Dr. Tsang is a Professor of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Cellular & Molecular Medicine, Interdisciplinary School of Health Sciences and Professor Emeritus, University of Ottawa. He is also a Senior Scientist in the Chronic Disease Program, as well as Emeritus Senior Scientist, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute.
Professor Tsang is an internationally recognized ovarian biologist, who has successfully developed a translational research program in women’s health. His team of basic scientists and clinical investigators address important health issues, including female infertility and ovarian cancer. Ben’s research program covers the broad area of cell fate regulation in women’s reproductive health. He and his team are examining the cell signaling pathways involved in the regulation of ovarian cell survival and apoptosis and have defined basic mechanisms governing normal ovarian follicular growth and offered important insights into the pathophysiology of polycystic ovarian syndrome. In addition, his research on the molecular and cellular basis of chemoresistance in ovarian cancer has provided key information for the development of new therapy for chemoresistant ovarian cancer. His current investigation, employing nanophotonics and machine learning, focuses on the utility of exosomes as a biomarker for early detection of ovarian cancer and prediction of chemosensitivity. The success of Professor Tsang’s research is also reflected by his ability to secure continuous funding from MRC/CIHR during the past 39 years. He has contributed over 235 original publications and 20 reviews/book chapters and was awarded 4 patents.
Ben has received many honors and awards, including the Award of Excellence in Reproductive Medicine from the Canadian Fertility and Andrology Society, the OCRI Research Award from the Ottawa Centre for Research and Innovations, Angel Award for cancer research excellence from the Ottawa Regional Cancer Foundation, “Outstanding Alumnus” of Bemidji State University (Minnesota), the J David Grimes Research Career Achievement Award at the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, the University of Ottawa Faculty of Medicine Award of Excellence (Research) and the Recognition Award (Medical Education).
Ben is an Emeritus Member of SSR. He has been a SSR member since the time of his postdoctoral training with Dr. David T. Armstrong (University of Western Ontario). The SSR has been his second academic home, which has played an important role in his vocational training and career development. His extensive service to the SSR represents his desire to “pay back” the Society. In addition to serving on the SSR Board of Directors (2012-2015), Future Meeting Sites Committee (1995-1996) and Education Committee (1985-1986), he was the Chair of the Nominating Committee (1994-1995), the Local Arrangements Committee (LAC) of the 2001 SSR Annual Meeting held in Ottawa, Canada and LAC Co-Chair of the 2020 SSR meeting, which unfortunately was postponed to 2023 due to the pandemic. One of Ben’s most significant contributions to the Society has been his leadership in fundraising to support its annual meetings and programs. He chaired the Development Committee (2003-2004) and the Industrial Relations Subcommittee, (2001- 2004). In addition, he served as the Chair of the Golden Anniversary Fundraising Campaign of the Society (2016-2018) which successfully raised $1.2 million. This allows the establishment annually of the Fuller W. Bazer SSR International Scientist Award, Janice Bahr Junior Scientist Travel Award and the SSR-CFAS Speaker Exchange Partnership.
One of Ben’s visions in research is that research has no geographic and cultural boundaries, and an important ingredient of research success is international partnership. In this context, he served as the Canadian Lead of the Canada-Japan Bilateral Program on Women’s Health Research and co-chaired the China-Canada Bilateral Program on Reproductive Health. He holds an honorary professorship at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Jinan University, Nanjing Medical University and Taipei Medical University. He was appointed the World Class University Professor of Biomodulation at Seoul National University and served on the Advisory Committee of the Cancer Research Institute, Seoul National University.
He is a Co-Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Ovarian Research, and previously served on the Editorial Board of Biology of Reproduction, Endocrinology, Reproduction and Adaptive Medicine. He served as President of the Canadian Fertility and Andrology Society and is currently on the Board of Directors and Co-Chair of the Charitable Giving Committee of the Glebe Centre, a Not-for-Profit long-term care home and community senior care facility.