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Staff / Facilities

Meet our highly qualified team of investigators and key clinical staff.


Dr. Robin Kuritzky, Cardiology

Principal Investigator

Dr. Robin Kuritzky, a graduate of McGill University for both B.Sc. and MDCM degrees, has been at the Royal Columbian Hospital since 1985. He completed 5 years of Internal Medicine and Cardiology training at Harbor-UCLA Medical in Los Angeles in 1984. He has been an Interventional Cardiologist throughout his career, recently giving up heart catheterization to focus on general cardiology in the office and cardiac research. He began participating in clinical trials in the 80’s and has been involved in over 30 studies since that time. These trials include cardiac intervention, heart failure, arrhythmias, anti-coagulation, and drug and lipid studies.

Dr. Dennis Rupka, Cardiology

Principal Investigator

Dr. Dennis Rupka, a graduate of McMaster University, has been a member of the Department of Cardiology at Royal Columbian Hospital since 1985. He is an Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine at UBC and consultant to the College of Physicians & Surgeons of BC in Cardiac Ultrasound. As a contributor to over 35 clinical trials as Principal Investigator, his present research interests include Congestive Heart Failure, Atherogenesis, and Ischemic Heart Disease.

Dr. Stanley Tung, Cardiac Electrophysiology

Principal Investigator

Dr. Stanley Tung is currently a heart rhythm specialist at the Royal Columbian Hospital with special interest in ventricular arrhythmia management, sudden cardiac death prevention and complex pacing. He graduated from medical school at the University of Manitoba, and completed his cardiology and electrophysiology training in Brigham and Women’s Hospital at Harvard University. He was working at St Paul’s Hospital from 2001 and was recently recruited to the Royal Columbian Hospital in 2014. Dr Tung focuses his research on new technology evaluation and works closely with industry designing novel pacing. He is a Canadian Arrhythmia Network Investigator.

Dr. John LeMaitre, Adult Cardiology and Cardiac Electrophysiology

Principal Investigator

Dr. John LeMaitre graduated from the University of Edinburgh in 1997 and was awarded a research medical doctorate from the University of Edinburgh in 2009 for his research thesis on exercise and chronic heart failure. After specialist cardiology training in the UK, Dr. LeMaitre completed a sub-specialty cardiac electrophysiology training fellowship at the Mazankowski Alberta Heart Institute in 2010. Since his appointment to the Royal Columbian Hospital in 2010 he has developed the invasive cardiac electrophysiology program for Fraser Health, serving a population of approximately 1.8 million people, performing invasive cardiac procedures such as cardiac ablation and cardiac resynchronization. Dr. LeMaitre was one of two researchers implanting novel “leadless” pacemakers in British Columbia in 2014-2015. His research interests include trials for ablation, pacemakers, defibrillators and cardiac resynchronization.

Dr. Shahzad S. Karim, Cardiac Surgeon

Principal Investigator

Dr. Shahzad Karim graduated from the University of British Columbia in 1989 completing a MD degree in the Faculty of Medicine. He then completed a one-year rotating internship at Toronto Western Hospital. Dr. Karim practiced as a general practitioner for a year before completing a general surgery residency at UBC from 1991-1996 followed by training in Cardiac Surgery also at UBC from 1996-1998. He has been an attending cardiac surgeon at the Royal Columbian Hospital since 1998, is currently the Head of Cardiac Surgery for the Fraser Health Authority and holds a faculty position as Clinical Professor of Surgery in the UBC Department of Surgery. Major areas of interest include pacemakers, devices and aortic surgery.

Dr. Albert Chan, Interventional Cardiology

Principal Investigator

Dr. Albert Chan graduated from the University of Toronto School of Medicine in 1994, and underwent residency in internal medicine in Toronto and cardiology in Vancouver. He earned an MSc in Clinical Epidemiology & Biostatistics at the Harvard School of Public Health then went on to complete a 2-year interventional cardiology fellowship at The Cleveland Clinic Foundation. He worked as a staff interventional cardiologist at the Oschner Clinic Foundation for 2 years, before joining the Cardiac Service Department in the Royal Columbian Hospital in 2004 where he is currently the Head of Interventional Cardiology of the Royal Columbian Hospital and Fraser Health Authority, and Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine at UBC. He is the Principal Investigator for the RESPECT Trial that examined at the effectiveness of PFO closure in the prevention of stroke, and has been a co-Principal Investigator of numerous trials in the cardiac catheterization laboratories. His current clinical and research interests include transcatheter therapies for structural heart disease, such as transcatheter aortic valve replacement, percutaneous left atrial appendage closure for stroke prevention in atrial fibrillation. He is also interested in new coronary revascularization technology such as bioresorbable coronary stents.

Dr. Wendy Gordon, Cardiovascular Pharmacology

Principal Investigator

Wendy Gordon earned her Bachelor of Science (Pharmacy) and her Pharm D. at the University of British Columbia (UBC). She is currently a Clinical Coordinator at Royal Columbian Hospital in New Westminster, British Columbia. Dr. Gordon’s clinical expertise is cardiovascular pharmacology. She provides patient care services to the coronary care unit and the cardiac catheterization lab. Dr. Gordon acts as a clinical advisor for cardiac research.

Dr. Michael C. Noble, Oncology, Hematologic and General Medicine

Principal Investigator

Dr. Michael C Noble obtained his B.Sc. from the University of British Columbia (UBC) then proceeded to graduate from Harvard Medical School, Boston in 1970. He completed a 3-year Internal Medicine program at Mt. Sinai Hospital, New York and a 2-year Hematology/Oncology program at the University of Toronto before joining the Royal Columbian Hospital in 1976 as a consultant and attending physician. Dr. Noble’s interest is in oncology-related trials with direct patient benefit, particularly new treatment access. Trials done in oncology support medications and malignancies of lung, breast, lymphoma and myeloma.

Dr. Gerald Da Roza, Nephrology & Internal Medicine

Principal Investigator

Dr. Gerald Da Roza has undergraduate training in Mathematics & Statistics and a Master’s in Health Sciences from the University of British Columbia (UBC). He is currently the Head of Medicine at Royal Columbian Hospital, Director of the Royal Columbian Hospital Clinical Teaching Unit, Postgraduate and the Division Head of Fraser Health Nephrology. Dr. Da Roza has conducted a variety of research studies which were initially focused on epidemiology, biostatistics, and population. His current focus is participation in multi-centre clinical trials as well as health outcome-based research.

Dr. Kenneth Atkinson, Gastroenterology

Principal Investigator

Dr. Kenneth Atkinson, a graduate of McMaster University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology and the University of Ottawa with a Doctorate in Medicine, has been at Royal Columbian Hospital since 1998. He is a Staff Gastroenterologist and Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine at UBC with special interest in Inflammatory Bowel Disease. Dr. Atkinson has contributed to over 15 studies. His present research interest centers on new treatments for Inflammatory Bowel Disease.

Dr Daniel Schwartz, Nephrology

Principal Investigator

Dr Daniel Schwartz obtained his BSc from McGill University and his medical degree from the University of British Columbia. He completed his Internal Medicine and Nephrology training at the University of Toronto, where he also worked as a staff nephrologist and clinical instructor. He is currently the Program Medical Director for the Fraser Health Renal Program, medical lead of the Fraser Health home peritoneal program and Clinical Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of British Columbia. He has a keen interest in knowledge translation at the point of care and the intersection of information technology with clinical medicine. His research interests focus on quality improvement and novel therapeutics in renal disease.

Dr. Gerald Simkus, Interventional Cardiology

Principal Investigator

Dr. Tycho Vuurmans, Interventional Cardiology

Principal Investigator

Katherine Haveman, CRCP

Clinical Trials Manager

Sandi Thiessen, RN

Clinical Research Coordinator

Sarah Lacroix RN

Clinical Research Coordinator

Our staff is trained in :

  • Standard of Operating Procedures (SOP)
  • International Conference of Harmisation (ICH) and Good Clinical Practice (GCP)
  • Health Canada’s Regulations Amending the Food and drug Regulations (1024-Clinical Trials) and Division 5 Drugs for Clinical trials Involving Human Subjects
  • Transportation and Dangerous Goods Training (TDG)
  • Specific Protocols and their Procedures
  • Informed Consent Process


Google Maps Pic

Fraser Clinical Trials uses:

Our team has access to medical diagnostic equipment, including:

  • Incubator
  • Ultrasounds
  • EKG Machines
  • Centrifuge
  • Pharmacy Fridge
  • -20 Freezer
  • We have the capability to access a variety of medical diagnostic equipment. Please contact us for further information on equipment.