Academic Rank:
Clinical Professor, Centre for Blood Research | Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of British Columbia
Senior Scientist, Medical Affairs and Innovation, Canadian Blood Services
Short Bio:

Dr. Pryzdial obtained his Ph.D. at the University of Toronto in biochemistry, working on complement, the plasma protein system that innately responds to pathogens. Postdoctoral training shifted gears to another plasma protein network, coagulation, at the University of Vermont, National Institutes of Health, Center of Excellence in Thrombosis. His primary appointment is now Senior Research Scientist with Canadian Blood Services. Dr. Pryzdial’s laboratory is at the University of British Columbia, Centre for Blood Research (http://cbr.ubc.ca/), where he recently completed two terms as Associate Director. He holds a UBC faculty position as Clinical Professor in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. The work in his laboratory focuses on coagulation biochemistry and discovers mechanisms showing how this complicated cascade of proteins crosses over into virus infection and clot-busting, revealing new therapeutic targets. His lab’s studies are gratefully funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, and Canadian Blood Services.

Education:

  • BSc, University of Toronto, Biology, Chemistry Minor, Advanced Biochemistry, 1981
  • PhD, University of Toronto, Biochemistry, 1987
  • Postdoc, University of Vermont, 1990

Academic background

Dr. Pryzdial obtained his Ph.D. at the University of Toronto in biochemistry, working on complement, the plasma protein system that innately responds to pathogens. Postdoctoral training shifted gears to another plasma protein network, coagulation, at the University of Vermont, National Institutes of Health, Center of Excellence in Thrombosis. His primary appointment is now Senior Research Scientist with Canadian Blood Services. Dr. Pryzdial’s laboratory is at the University of British Columbia, Centre for Blood Research (http://cbr.ubc.ca/), where he recently completed two terms as Associate Director. He holds a UBC faculty position as Clinical Professor in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. The work in his laboratory focuses on coagulation biochemistry and discovers mechanisms showing how this complicated cascade of proteins crosses over into virus infection and clot-busting, revealing new therapeutic targets. His lab’s studies are gratefully funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, and Canadian Blood Services.

Research Interest

There are two primary research interests in the Pryzdial Lab.

1) Virus-Induced Coagulopathy: Most (if not all) viruses that have a cell membrane sheathing, called an envelope, influence our clotting system. Mainly focusing on HIV, dengue virus and oral herpes virus, the Pryzdial team is seeking to find a common molecular basis to explain how these viruses trigger clotting and then design the first broad-spectrum antiviral agent to alleviate their respective pathologies.

2) Clot-Busting Enhancers: The favored clot-busting drug (rtPA) causes life-threatening bleeding far too often in patients with heart attacks, stroke, or deep vein thrombosis: approximately 6%. The Pryzdial Lab has discovered an overlooked mechanism that facilitates clot-busting without the need to administer rtPA, thus improving patient safety. Development of this new mode is underway using recombinant technology and preclinical animal models.

Teaching Interest

Dr. Pryzdial coordinates PATH548K (Hemostasis Biochemistry), which is a small-class, highly interactive scenario, focusing on the students’ interests in hemostasis that strives to develop communication skills. He also periodically contributes to PATH502 (Current Topics in Pathology) and PATH521 (Introduction to the Pathogenesis of Human Disease).