James Ellis

Molecular Genetics


SickKids - Peter Gilgan Centre for Research and Learning
686 Bay Street, Room 16-9705 , Toronto, Ontario Canada M5G 0A4
Research Interests
Disease models, Drug discovery, design, development and screening, Neurodegeneration and neurodevelopment, Stem cell biology, Translation and post-transcriptional regulation

Dr. Ellis completed his BSc at McGill University and his PhD at the University of Toronto with Dr. Alan Bernstein developing retrovirus vectors for gene targeting. His Post-Doctoral Fellowship studying the beta-globin Locus Control Region was mentored by Dr. Frank Grosveld in London UK. Dr. Ellis established his own research team at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto in 1994 with a focus on gene therapy for Sickle Cell Anemia. He subsequently developed MECP2 vectors for Rett syndrome and vectors with reporter genes that mark specific cell types. For example, the EOS vectors express specifically in pluripotent stem cells and facilitate the generation of patient-induced Pluripotent Stem (iPS) cells. The Ellis lab currently uses these iPS cells in collaborative research teams to model Rett syndrome, Autism Spectrum Disorders and cardiomyopathies. A new research direction concentrates on post-transcriptional regulation during human neurodevelopment. Dr. Ellis is Research Integrity Advisor at the Hospital for Sick Children.

Courses taught

  • Stem Cells II


  • Senior Scientist, DSCB, SickKids