Dr. Tak W. Mak is the director of the Campbell Family Institute for Breast Cancer Research at the Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto. He received a bachelor's of science in biochemistry in 1967 and a master of science in biophysics in 1968 from the University of Wisconsin. He earned his Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of Alberta in 1971. He is also senior scientist in the division of Stem Cell and Developmental Biology, Ontario Cancer Institute. Since 1984, he has been a professor in the departments of medical biophysics and immunology at the University of Toronto.
Dr. Mak co-discovered the t-cell receptor, a key component of the immune system. His research is concentrated on gaining fundamental knowledge of the biology of cells in normal and disease settings, and in particular on the mechanisms underlying immune responses and tumorigenesis. His lab has initiated several complementary programs, many of which have evolved from the production and analysis of genetically engineered mouse strains.
Dr. Mak has received several awards and honors for his work. He is a member of the Order of Ontario and was elected as a foreign associate to the National Academy of Sciences in the discipline of immunology in 2002. Dr. Mak has received the King Faisal Prize for Medicine, the Gairdner Foundation International Award, the Paul Ehrlich Prize, the Novartis Prize in Immunology, the Killam Prize by the Canada Council for the Arts, and the Sloan Prize of the General Motors Cancer Foundation, and the Robert L. Noble Prize by the National Cancer Institute of Canada.