Ovarian Cancer Canada’s efforts to attract leading minds to the field and provide the necessary resources has grown Canada’s collaborative ovarian cancer research community.

Canadian Conference on Ovarian Cancer Research

To convene the ovarian cancer research community, the first Canadian Conference on Ovarian Cancer Research was held in Ottawa in 2002. Founded by Dr. Barbara Vanderhyden, Corinne Boyer Chair in Ovarian Cancer Research at the University of Ottawa, and Senior Scientist at the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, the conference has become a biennial event where ovarian cancer researchers can exchange knowledge and further connections that have helped make Canada’s ovarian cancer research community one of the most collaborative in the world.

Ovarian Cancer Canada is proud to be the platinum sponsor of the inaugural event and continues its involvement as both a lead sponsor and active participant.

Enabling translational research through the Ovarian Cancer Canada Tissue Banking Network.

The Ovarian Cancer Canada (OCC) Tissue Banking Network is a virtual network of biobanks which collect, store, and distribute biological samples (e.g., tumour tissue/cells, normal tissue/cells, blood) generously donated by individuals with ovarian cancer to enable ovarian cancer research in Canada and abroad.

OCC currently provides support to biobanks in five provinces: British Columbia, Saskatchewan, Ontario, Quebec, and Nova Scotia. In 2023, there were 50 peer-reviewed scientific publications on studies involving samples and/or data from the OCC Tissue Banking Network. These publications contribute to new knowledge in diverse areas such as genetic risk factors, rare ovarian cancers, omics, treatment resistance, prognostic factors, and novel treatment strategies.

Scientists interested in accessing human ovarian cancer biospecimens for their research are encouraged to contact the individual biobanks for more information.


Building your scientific toolbox: OCC’s collection of research models

Ovarian Cancer Canada is proud to make available to researchers the OvCAN Collection, which is a virtual collection of high-fidelity research models of ovarian cancer. The development and/or characterization of these models has been funded by OCC.

The purpose of the OvCAN Collection is to facilitate the creation and sharing of these gold standard models among the ovarian cancer research community, to enable and expedite high-quality research focused on improving ovarian cancer outcomes.

If you are interested in incorporating one of these models into your study, please contact the individual lab for more information.

Grants and awards

We stand shoulder to shoulder with the community affected by ovarian cancer, and work alongside partners with granting agencies, non-profit institutions, and private individuals to raise the profile of ovarian cancer research and spur scientific progress. Our portfolio of grants and awards encourage and stimulate learning and discoveries that further our understanding of ovarian cancer, promoting the highest caliber of research on the horizon.


Ovarian Cancer Canada and the Cancer Research Society are proud to launch the Bridging the Gap for Ovarian Cancer Treatments Grant Competition in an effort to develop and highlight scientific research excellence in ovarian cancer therapeutic solutions. The competition will award up to 2 grants, each totaling $600,000 over a two-year three-year period.

Competition process
Applicants to the Bridging the Gap for Ovarian Cancer Treatments Grants Competition must submit a letter of intent (LOI). The CRS and OCC will review all LOIs for conformity and quality. Selected applicants will be invited to submit a full application. A peer review committee will rank the applications and choose the best ones.

Bruce Galloway Trainee Grants

To ensure that Canadians diagnosed with gynecologic cancer receive specialized care from a gynecologic oncologist, Ovarian Cancer Canada facilitates grants to obstetrics and gynecology residents who choose gynecologic oncology as an elective.

Ovarian Cancer Canada provides recipients with $1,500 to fund housing and travel costs for the duration of a one-month elective working with a gynecologic oncology team at a cancer centre in Canada or the United States.

Submission Procedure
Please download and send your completed form and accompanying documentation to Alison Ross, Director, Knowledge Mobilization, Ovarian Cancer Canada at aross@ovariancanada.org.

The Anita Unruh Prize

In 2016, the Anita Unruh Prize was established by Patrick McGrath in honour of his wife, a former associate dean and professor. The Prize rewards excellence in trainee research on ovarian cancer and encourages trainees to establish careers in research related to this disease. Offered biannually, this is a peer-reviewed prize for a published paper that both focuses on ovarian cancer and has a trainee as first author. Applications from trainees of all levels and disciplines will be considered.

The Unruh Prize includes $5,000 in addition to registration and travel for the Canadian Conference on Ovarian Cancer Research in Ottawa, where the prize will be presented. The applicants must be willing to have their information publicized and plan to attend the entire conference.

This competition is open to all trainees doing research on ovarian cancer.

Submission Procedure
A complete application includes components submitted by the trainee and their supervisor.

The application is now closed. Details for the next submission will be available late 2024. 

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