About

The Ray Truant Lab is located on the 4th Floor of McMaster Children’s Hospital, within the Department of Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences.

Ray Truant completed his Bachelor’s degree at the University of Toronto, Victoria College, and continued on to his graduate studies in the Department of Medical Genetics in the lab of Jack F. Greenblatt at the C.H. Best Institute. For his graduate work, his studies focused on protein-protein interactions of the p53 tumor -suppressor protein and P53 mechanism of activation of transcription.

After receiving his doctorate in 1996, Ray studied as a post-doctoral Research Associate at the Howard Hughes Medical Research Institute at Duke University in the department of Genetics with Dr. Bryan R. Cullen. While at the HHMI, his research centered on protein-protein interactions of HIV-1 proteins and into mechanisms of protein transport to and from the nucleus using biochemical and cell biological techniques.

In 1999, Ray was appointed Assistant Professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences at McMaster University , where he started new projects on polyglutamine diseases, focusing on Huntington’s Disease. In 2001, Ray won the CIHR “New Scientist” award and his group is now supported by operating grants from Canada and the United States. In 2010, he was promoted to full Professor in Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences. 

Ray is Chair of the Scientific Advisory board and Board Officer of the Huntington Society of Canada since 2007.  He is a guest member of the CMND panel of the NIH, USA.  He was the External Scientific Advisor to HDBuzz website 2011-16. The Truant lab with Celeste Suart initiated SCAsource.net in 2018. Ray is a recipient of the 2012 Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal and the 2014 Michael Wright Community Leadership Award.  

The Truant lab is in an academic setting, but highly collaborative with pharmaceutical industry and biotech partners, as well as our clinical collaborators, Dr. Mark Guttman at the Centre for Movement Disorders in Toronto and Toronto Western Hospital and the University of Toronto, as well as Dr. Mark Tarnopolsky at McMaster’s Neuromuscular Disease Clinic.  Dr. Truant is on the Scientific Advisory Board of Mitokinin LLC, Stanford, CA, a biotech firm dedicated to the development of small molecules drug therapy to restore the phosphorylation of mutant Huntingtin and thus treat Huntington’s disease.

The Truant lab has current projects in HD, SCA1 and SCA7 and is moving toward elucidating universal mechanisms in age-onset neurodegeneration.