MD, MSc., FRCSC, FACS
Preferred method of communication
Research and teaching
Area of Focus
- Cancer Associated Changes in Metabolism
Summary of Research
My clinical practice in hepatobiliary, pancreatic and gastrointestinal surgical oncology is blended with my research activities. I am currently supervising several residents on clinical research projects pertaining to the management of advanced biliary cancers, outcome prediction with post-operative liver failure, and determining the influence of cancer cachexia on operative and survival outcomes.
In general, my interest is related to understanding how tumor and host interact, mostly from a metabolic perspective. This involves gaining an appreciation of the epiphenomena that dictate the host metabolic response as well as the tumor signals that stimulate that metabolic response. Inflammation is one such epiphenomenon.
One strength of my lab is our capability to mine and integrate highly dimensional data sets (“Big Data”) from clinical, molecular and radiological sources to generate novel insights on the tumor-host relationship in humans. For example, we have correlated body composition features measurable on CT scan with clinical outcomes and with highly dimensional molecular data derived from tumor. This has resulted in the discovery of a novel variant of ovarian cancer that appears to stimulate lipid catabolism to support the proliferative requirements of tumor cells. We are currently evaluating whether there are special subtypes for other tumor types in which body composition changes appear. I have performed a significant body of work involving characterizing the metabolome associated with several cancers and their subtypes. This has resulted in the development of a number of diagnostic biomarkers that are currently undergoing validation, as we prepare them for introduction to the clinic. I have a number of important national and international collaborations. My lab has been a major contributor to The Cancer Genome Atlas Project: we have submitted about 20% of the pancreas cancer cohort, 10% of the hepatocellular carcinoma cohort, and 20% of the cholangiocarcinoma cohort. In addition, my lab has participated in the transcriptional analysis of these tumor types. I am currently contributing pancreas cancers to CPTAC. I have an ongoing collaboration with the Mayo Clinic, studying the genomic changes related to gallbladder cancer. We have participated in the genomic characterization of hereditary gastric polyps. Finally, I have a long standing collaboration with Vickie Baracos, Vera Mazurak and Sambu Damaraju at the University of Alberta, who have an interest in cancer-related changes in body composition.
Oliver Bathe is Professor of Surgery and Oncology at the University of Calgary. He is a surgical oncologist with a special interest in hepatobiliary, pancreatic, and gastrointestinal tumors. His clinical research interests relate to improving clinical outcomes in cancers of the liver, pancreas and GI tract. As a result of his clinical trial involvement, he is a member of the CCTG Clinical Trials Group Gastrointestinal Tumor Group Executive, Co-chair of the CCTG Hepatobiliary Working Group, and member of the Intergroup Hepatobiliary Task Force. He also has a basic and translational research program. His lab is focused on understanding the host response against tumor, particularly the metabolic changes that accompany tumor growth and metastasis. He directs the University of Calgary Hepatobiliary and Gastrointestinal Tumor Bank, which currently houses over 22,000 samples from almost 4,000 patients. His tumor banking efforts have attracted a number of national and international collaborations, including with The Cancer Genome Atlas Project (TCGA) and the Clinical Proteomic Tumor Analysis Consortium (CPTAC). Most recently, his work has involved mapping the metabolomic features of various hepatobiliary, pancreatic, and gastrointestinal tumors, which has led to the development of some diagnostic blood tests for pancreatic cancer and colorectal cancer.