Louis Siminovitch

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Louis (Lou) Siminovitch
Louis Siminovitch.JPG
Born (1920-05-01) May 1, 1920 (age 100)
Alma materMcGill University
Known forMolecular biology, genetics
AwardsOrder of Canada
Order of Ontario
Flavelle Medal (1978)
Scientific career
InstitutionsOntario Cancer Institute
Hospital for Sick Children Research Institute
Samuel Lunenfeld Institute at Mount Sinai Hospital
University of Toronto
Notable studentsJoyce Taylor-Papadimitriou

Louis "Lou" Siminovitch, CC OOnt FRSC FRS (born May 1, 1920) is a Canadian molecular biologist. He was a pioneer in human genetics, researcher into the genetic basis of muscular dystrophy and cystic fibrosis, and helped establish Ontario programs exploring genetic roots of cancer.

Born in Montreal, Quebec to parents who had emigrated from Eastern Europe, he won a scholarship in chemistry to McGill University, earning a doctorate in 1944. He then studied at the Pasteur Institute in Paris. In 1953 he joined Toronto's Connaught Medical Research Laboratories. Later he joined the University of Toronto and worked there from 1956 to 1985.[1] One of his doctoral students was Joyce Taylor-Papadimitriou.

He helped establish the Department of Genetics at the Hospital for Sick Children as geneticist in chief, where he worked from 1970 to 1985. From 1983 to 1994 he was the founding director of research at the Samuel Lunenfeld Research Institute of Mount Sinai Hospital (Toronto). He is the founder and the first Chair of the Department of Molecular Genetics at the University of Toronto, then called Department of Medical Cell Biology. [2]

He is the author or coauthor, at last count, of over 147 scientific papers, reviews, and articles in journals and books.

He married Elinore, a playwright who died in 1995. They had three daughters. The annual Elinore & Lou Siminovitch Prize in Theatre is named in his and his wife's honour. [1]


  • 1941 B.Sc. McGill University, Montreal, Quebec (Chemistry)
  • 1944 Ph.D. McGill University, Montreal, Quebec (Chemistry)
  • 1978 D.Sc. Memorial University, St. John's, Newfoundland
  • 1978 D.Sc. McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario



  1. ^ a b "Elinore & Lou Siminovitch - Siminovitch Prize in Theatre".
  2. ^ "History — Molecular Genetics - University of Toronto".
  3. ^ "27 Appointees Named To Ontario's Highest Honour".

External links[edit]

Selected publications[edit]

  • Siminovitch, L., McCulloch, E.A., Till, J.E. (1963) The distribution of colony-forming cells among spleen colonies. Journal of Cellular and Comparative Physiology 62:327-36. [Link to article]
  • Till, J.E., McCulloch, E.A., Siminovitch, L. (1964) A stochastic model of stem cell proliferation, based on the growth of spleen colony-forming cells. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (USA) 51(1):29-36. [Link to article]
  • McCulloch, E.A., Siminovitch, L., Till, J.E. (1964) Spleen-colony formation in anemic mice of genotype WWv. Science 144(1620):844-846. [Link to article]
  • McCulloch, E.A., Siminovitch, L., Till, J.E., Russell, E.S., Bernstein, S.E. (1965) The cellular basis of the genetically determined hemopoietic defect in anemic mice of genotype Sl/Sld. Blood 26(4):399-410. [Link to article]
  • Wu, A.M., Till, J.E., Siminovitch, L., McCulloch, E.A. (1968) Cytological evidence for a relationship between normal hematopoietic colony-forming cells and cells of the lymphoid system. J Exp Med 127(3):455-464. [Link to article]