Cancer Knowledge Network (CKN) is owned by Multimed Inc., an international medical publishing and project development company, and publishers of Canada’s leading oncology journal, Current Oncology. We initially created CKN in 2011 to address the gap between the medical and the patient/caregiver communities. It quickly grew and took on a life of its own. CKN now directly addresses many areas of the cancer world, including Young Adults, Integrative Therapy, Oncofertility, Music and Creative Therapies, Patient Advocacy and Childhood Cancer.
Since the launch of CKN, Multimed Inc. has been encouraged by the positive response we’ve received from the cancer community. CKN offers its readers a tangible, practical way of living with cancer, from beginning to end. Credible, vetted, and relevant information is offered to viewers on every level of the cancer continuum. Life experience in the cancer world tells us what our readers really need to know, and business experience tells us how to deliver it. We don’t shy away from the difficult topics; we embrace them as integral parts of living with cancer. Whether our viewers are newly diagnosed, long term survivors, caregivers or oncology professionals, CKN provides the navigation system through which they can find their way. Our editorial focus concentrates on a single goal: framing every resource on the website so that our audience can apply it to improve their day to day living.
Over the last few years, CKN has developed a solid reputation for developing knowledge translation projects using social media to disseminate credible, evidence-based research to the cancer community. Our goal is to increase the quality of life of cancer patients and their carers by filtering this information from the researchers to the end users on social platforms that are accessible and reliable. Below are a few of the projects we’re currently involved in.
- CKN Oncofertility Referral Network: This is a nationwide platform that links patients, physicians and fertility clinics to ensure time-sensitive needs are met in providing fertility options for young cancer patients as they embark on treatment.
- CKN Oncofertility Database: Together with the Canadian Fertility and Andrology Society, CKN has developed this project to track oncofertility referrals across Canada to determine who is making referrals as well as monitor patient decision-making regarding the use of available technology to preserve fertility before cancer treatment begins.
- #YARally: CKN, in partnership with 4x cancer survivor Stephanie Madsen, has embarked on this campaign to raise awareness through social media about the unique issues YAs face using evidence-based research and personal narratives.
- Making Cancer Less Painful for Kids: We are tackling the problem of pain in children with cancer through a social media campaign for parents called “Making Cancer Less Painful For Kids” (#KidsCancerPain). The campaign is funded by a grant from the Canadian Cancer Society. Together with Drs. Christine Chambers and Jennifer Stinson, over the next 12 months, we will be bringing parents the very best, cutting-edge research evidence about children’s cancer pain – what causes it, common myths, how to assess it, how to treat it, and more! And we’ll be sharing this information with parents in a series of blogs, videos, images, Facebook posts, and Twitter chats, all posted and shared here and on our social media. We’ll also be studying the reach of the campaign and its impact on parents.
We thank our Partners: Canadian Fertility & Andrology Society, EMD Serono, Canadian Cancer Society.
Please direct queries to Karen.
- A minimum of 2 patients/caregivers with experience of a health issue reflected in the resource participate in the co-creation, delivery and review of the CKN resources produced.
- CKN fully accommodates any and all disability requirements of patient participants.
- CKN provides patients access to such devices, services or technologies as may be required, as well as fully paid travel and accommodation expenses incurred by patients collaborating, in advance if requested.
- All CKN resources are freely accessible in digital form from the internet and via a mobile app (www.cancerkn.com) at no cost to the end user. There is no requirement to enter any personal data to obtain access to CKN resources.
- All CKN resources are patient-centred, free of jargon and undefined acronyms, and are prepared in plain language.
Meet the CKN Team
Lorne Cooper - CEO, Multimed Inc.
Expert in sustainable business models * Identification of key opportunities for successful project development * Focus on long-term viability * Sought-after business mentor
Lorne’s ability to develop a conceptual model into practical programs and sustainable businesses is an expertise sought out by many corporations, non-profit organizations and small businesses. His ability to ascertain the marketplace and identify key opportunities for project development has been the cornerstone of his career. Contract negotiations, team building techniques and strategic marketing amongst others have comprised his abilities to develop new and innovative business and project development opportunities with sustainable long term results. Lorne continues to nurture new projects in both the medical and health care fields utilizing new and emerging technologies for the delivery of information to both the medical and patient communities worldwide.
Founder and CEO of Multimed Inc. (est. 1980), an international medical publishing and project development corporation. Lorne quickly established a reputation for creating, developing and implementing strategic marketing programs, both product- and public-relations focused, for a client base which includes multinational pharmaceutical and medical device corporations.
Lorne also developed the Renal Family Magazine (est. 1980), which became the prototype for future formats, educating patients about their health and disease state and developing methods to promote physician/patient relations. The Renal Family was distributed to 19 countries worldwide.
Throughout the 1980’s and early 1990′s, Lorne continued to develop a portfolio of medical and health care publications for both physician and patient readerships, focusing on a multitude of specialty areas including oncology, nephrology, orthopaedics and urology, to name a few. He developed the business and publishing model for the internationally renowned kidney journal Peritoneal Dialysis International.
In 1993 Lorne co-founded and was Chairman of the Canadian Health Development Foundation, a non-share capital corporation comprised of leading hospitals and multinational corporations designed to forge business development opportunities amongst the partners to improve delivery of services to both hospital environments and their patient populations. In this capacity, he was involved in the negotiations with these partners and senior government officials on the deputy premier and cabinet levels to ascertain the modality’s efficacy and development opportunities for pharmaceutical investments, on a province-by-province basis.
In 1994 Lorne founded and continues to publish Current Oncology which is the leading Canadian peer-reviewed oncology journal in Canada. In 2012 it received an impact factor of 2.473, making it one of the most prestigious oncology journals in the world.
Lorne’s current project is the development of the Cancer Knowledge Network, North America’s most widely read on-line teaching and educational resource for oncologists, trainees, nurses, general practitioners, pharmacists and patients. CKN was launched in April 2011 and already has a readership of over 200,000 viewers from around the world.
Download PDF Version: Lorne Cooper CV
Karen Irwin - Assistant to the CEO (Special Projects)
As Project Coordinator, Karen liaises with all CKN editors and writers and is responsible for managing the website and its editorial content. Karen brings her unique personal perspective to CKN, after losing her son to cancer at the age of 7. As a pediatric caregiver her experience and insight plays an important role. “My goal at CKN is to use my experience with my son Johnny to acquire content that will help people with the challenges of living with cancer. I strive to make CKN a place where anyone who is touched by cancer can glean solid, constructive information that will ultimately help them navigate – into, through, and out of – cancer treatment. Because I’ve been there, I understand the emotions and obstacles people face on their journeys and the need for connections with others. It is important to me to give a voice to the less prominent issues, such as oncofertility, pediatric cancer, young adult cancer, and caregiver issues. Based on my own journey with my son, I feel compelled to bridge the gap that exists between medical professional teams and patients. If we can help make personal connections between patients and doctors, and show the humanity on both sides, then the burden of cancer becomes lighter. Creating these networks of dialogue is an integral part of what CKN is all about. It’s not a world I ever wanted to be this close to, but now that I am, I’m committed to giving survivors and caregivers a place where they will not only be assured of gaining reliable and useful information but above all a place where they will feel connected – to each other and to their medical team. As always, I welcome your comments and/or questions.”
Phil Gold CC, OQ, MD, PhD - Editor, Current Oncology and CKN
Dr. Philip Gold, C.C., O.Q., M.D., Ph.D., is a pioneer in cancer research with nearly 50 years of clinical and teaching experience under his belt. As one of the most prominent clinical investigators in Montreal, Dr. Gold has demonstrated a steadfast commitment to bettering patient care through the development of innovative therapies. Dr. Gold’s early research led to the discovery and definition of the carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA), the blood test most frequently used in the diagnosis and management of patients with cancer. Dr. Gold has received numerous international awards and honors and has been elected to a wide variety of scientific organizations. He was named Companion of the Order of Canada, an Officer of the Ordre Nationale du Québec, a member of the Academy of Great Montrealers, and is also the recipient of the Gold Medal Award of Merit of the Graduate Society of McGill University. He is the recipient of such prestigious awards as the Gairdner Foundation’s Annual International Award, The Isaak Walton Killam Award in Medicine of the Canada Council and the National Cancer Institute of Canada R.M. Taylor Medal. He has been elected to membership in the Royal Society of Canada, the Association of American Physicians and Mastership in the American College of Physicians.
Pat Taylor is a producer, writer, director, performer and educator whose credits include documentary films, television specials, plays, musicals, short stories, music videos and major tourist attractions. She is also a mother and parent advocate for young adult cancer patients, and the founder of Chasing Rainbows Young Adult Cancer Advocacy, an initiative dedicated to discovering and distributing multi-media support materials for young adults with cancer, and facilitating young adult voices in the cancer community. Pat has produced two documentary films, Sara’s Story and Chasing Rainbows: Young Adults Living With Cancer (both of which feature young adults ages 19 to 29 “living life while fighting for it!”), and has researched and helped to promote many other film resources produced by and for young adults with cancer. Pat has been a guest speaker, session presenter and young adult cancer resource advocate at conferences across Canada, USA and Europe. (IPOS, APOS, TCT, CAPO, CCS, BCCA, NCONN, Stupid Cancer OMG, Critical Mass, ICCCPO). Pat cared for her own daughter Sara from first diagnosis at age 23 (1997) through recurrence (1999) and end-of-life at age 26 (2000). “Whether you are a family member, friend or health care provider, it is often difficult to know which way to turn, what to say or how or when to say it…when to offer help and when to step back. As a CKN Section Editor, it is my intent that we share our individual stories, confusions, insights and hindsights so we might help one another not only navigate the complexities of a “road trip” of this nature, but also celebrate with one another the precious moments filled with love and joy that give us the strength to travel along with our loved ones on the journey from beginning to end.”
Jonathan Eric Agin, JD, is the Executive Director for the Max Cure Foundation and the Institutional Official, Development Liaison for the Children’s Cancer Therapy Development Institute, a non-profit childhood cancer research biotech located in Beaverton, OR. He is also the Cancer Knowledge Network (Canadian Oncology Journal) Childhood Cancer Awareness and Advocacy Section Co-Editor and frequent contributor to the Huffington Post. Jonathan is an attorney by training and a former trial lawyer from Washington, DC. He is one of the most recognized names in the childhood cancer community. He has testified before the United States Congress on issues of identity theft impacting the childhood cancer community, which ultimately led to the introduction of bipartisan legislation named after his daughter Alexis (HR 2720, The Alexis Agin Identity Theft Protection Act of 2013). This legislation was later enacted into law as part of the overall budget deal of 2013. Jonathan’s legislative advocacy has proven effective in the passage of several bills in a climate of congressional stagnation and he continues to work closely with members of the community and beyond on legislative initiatives impacting the rare disease community. He has provided public comment before the FDA pedODAC Committee on the topic of biopsy in children with DIPG (an inoperable and almost universally fatal pediatric brain tumor). Jonathan became involved in the childhood cancer community following the diagnosis of his daughter Alexis at the age of two with DIPG in April 2008. Alexis battled heroically for thirty-three months until January 14, 2011. Jonathan frequently interacts with members of Congress and their staff, the White House, as well as various regulatory agencies and other cancer organizations in an effort to improve the plight of children with cancer. He is an original founding steering council member of the DIPG Collaborative. Jonathan resides in Falls Church, Virginia and has four children, Alexis (1-31-06 to 1-14-11), Gabriel age 7, Trevor age 4 and Kylie 2 years. Jonathan maintains his own website for his advocacy activities: www.jonathanagin.com and can be followed on Twitter @jonathanagin. In his spare time he also competes in endurance events like running marathons and triathlons.
Sue McKechnie learned her young son, Shawn had a brain tumour in May of 2006. When he passed away 18 months later after the rollercoaster of diagnosis, treatment, hope and terminal illness, she realized that even though he was gone from this world, he continued to send her courage from another. The message was clear – get out there and help other families sharing this journey. Since then Sue has written the book “A Sippy Cup of Chemo; A Family’s Journey Through Childhood Cancer” hoping to spread the message to other bereaved families that they are not alone. “It’s wonderful to talk to other parents who truly understand – the grief, the guilt and all the myriad of emotions you face. We didn’t choose to be part of this group, nor would we wish it upon anyone else but here we are and we need to support each other.” All the proceeds from her book are donated to Meagan’s Walk (http://www.meaganswalk.com/); benefitting brain tumour research at SickKids Hospital, a charitable organization whose committee Sue is a member of. Sue continues to advocate for funding and awareness of childhood cancer through blogging, speaking engagements and her work through Meagan’s Walk.
Dr. Robin McGee
Dr. Robin McGee (The Cancer Olympics, Twitter @TCOrobin), is a Registered Clinical Psychologist, mother, wife, educator and friend. Living in Nova Scotia, she has worked in health and education settings for over 25 years. Since entering remission, she has been very active in advocacy, mentorship, and fundraising on behalf of cancer patients. In particular, she has been involved in provincial, national, and international initiatives aimed at improving standards of cancer care. In 2015, she was awarded the Canadian Cancer Society’s highest honour, the National Medal of Courage. Robin was recently named the 2016 recipient of the Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers from the Governor General of Canada. Her book The Cancer Olympics has won five literary awards, and was recently listed among the best 55 self-published books of 2015 by Kirkus reviews. Proceeds of sales go to cancer support programs. The Cancer Olympics is McGee’s first – and hopefully her last – memoir about her cancer experiences.
Clarissa Schilstra is a two-time cancer survivor. She was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia for the first time when she was two and a half years old. She went through two and a half years of chemotherapy and survived. She led a happy and healthy life until June of 2007, shortly before her 13th birthday, when her cancer relapsed. She then went through another two and a half years of chemotherapy, this time accompanied by radiation. She is now twenty-three years old and a graduate of Duke University. Her passion is helping others cope with the ups and downs of life during and after cancer treatment. She currently works full-time as a research assistant, in the Duke University School of Medicine Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, with a team that focuses on developing interventions to help adolescents and young adults with chronic conditions transition from pediatric to adult healthcare. In the future, it is her goal to become a pediatric clinical psychologist and she would like to help improve the psychological care available to adolescents and young adults who have serious illnesses. As a CKN Section Editor, Clarissa hopes to provide advice based on her personal experience and to share relevant news and research to help young adult patients and survivors find new ways to live their best life in spite of the shadow of cancer. You can find Clarissa’s book, Riding the Cancer Coaster: Survival Guide for Teens and Young Adults, on Amazon.com. To learn more about Clarissa and her book, or to find AYA cancer support resources, visit her website and blog at www.teen-cancer.com.
Dr. Gregory Aune
Dr. Gregory J. Aune is the Stephanie Edlund Distinguished Professor of Pediatric Cancer Research and a St. Baldrick’s Foundation Scholar. His experience in pediatric cancer spans over 27 years and encompasses his own patient experiences, research in experimental therapeutics, clinical care of pediatric oncology patients, and childhood cancer advocacy. His interest in pediatric oncology began at age 16, when he was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma. While fortunate to survive, the experiences he encountered as a patient initiated a path towards a research and clinical career aimed at developing less toxic chemotherapy regimens. His experience as a long-term survivor included open-heart surgery at age 35 to replace his aortic valve and bypass three blocked coronary arteries that were damaged by his teenage cancer therapies. This life-changing event initiated his research interest in cardiac disease. His training to become a successful physician scientist and pediatric oncologist has included time spent at some of the most well-respected oncology institutions in the United States including, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, the National Cancer Institute, and Johns Hopkins Hospital.
Dr. Aune is a national leader in childhood cancer advocacy efforts. In San Antonio, he has been a leader in local fundraising and awareness efforts. Since 2010, he has spearheaded efforts by the St. Baldrick’s Foundation and For the Kids Dance Marathon at the University of Texas San Antonio that have raised over $830,000 for childhood cancer patients and research efforts. In September 2014, his appointment to the National Cancer Institute Council of Research Advocates (NCRA) was announced by NCI Director Dr. Harold Varmus at a White House briefing on childhood cancer.
In addition, Dr. Aune is a policy advisor for the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship, serves on the Board of Directors of the American Childhood Cancer Organization, is a member of the St. Baldrick’s Foundation National Advocacy Committee, and serves on the scientific advisory board for the Canines-N-Kids foundation.
In May 2015, Dr. Aune addressed the 68th World Health Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland and called on the World Health Organization to make childhood cancer a top global health priority.
Advisory Board Members
SarahRose holds a Masters degree in music education from the University of Toronto, and a Masters degree in music therapy at Wilfrid Laurier University. She is the founder and coordinator of the first music therapy programs at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre and Kensington Hospice in Toronto. Her clinical work and research is focused mainly on quality of life for acute palliative care, hematology, and hospice populations. She is also a Suzuki music educator, piano accompanist and singer/songwriter.
Mórag Currin is a highly-sought after esthetic instructor with more than 19 years of spa industry experience and more than 10 years of training and training management experience. She pioneered the Oncology Esthetics® advanced training for spa professionals and has set the standard in Canada, US, Australia and New Zealand. She is also the author of Oncology Esthetics: A Practitioner’s Guide (Allured Books 2009) and Health Challenged Skin: The Estheticians’ Desk Reference (Allured Books 2012). Her students learn to incorporate adjustments to spa treatments specifically for people undergoing cancer therapies, and other health issues. She continues to travel the globe with her training and expertise, helping to raise the bar in the spa industry and to open the door to all people regardless of skin type or health issues. A contributor to many consumer and business magazines, her work has appeared in numerous national and international publications. Currin currently serves on the advisory committee of the Skin Inc Magazine Board, and the International Society of Oncology Estheticians. Going beyond the world of esthetics, Mórag continues to reach out to those suffering from a variety of health challenges through Equine Facilitated Wellness (EFW).
Trisha Paul is a third year medical student at the University of Michigan Medical School who graduated from the University of Michigan with a B.S. in Honors English. She recently published the book Chronicling Childhood Cancer: A Collection of Personal Stories by Children and Teens with Cancer, and she aspires to become a pediatric oncologist and pediatric palliative care physician. Trisha chronicles her explorations in learning, researching, and teaching about illness narratives at illnessnarratives.com.
Sharon Bray, Ed.D., is the author of two books on writing and health: A Healing Journey: Writing Together through Breast Cancer and When Words Heal: Writing Through Cancer. Her blog site, www.writingthroughcancer.com, features weekly reflective essays and writing prompts for anyone writing out of illness, pain or life struggle. She leads a number of expressive writing workshops for cancer survivors and teaches creative nonfiction and transformational writing for UCLA extension Writers’ Program. She earned her doctorate from the University of Toronto.
Terri Coutee is the Founder and Director of the non profit organization http://www.diepcfoundation.org/. The Foundation provides education and resources to empower patients with information and options in breast reconstruction after mastectomy. She writes a blog at http://diepcjourney.com/ about the personal account of her own breast reconstruction. While working on her M.Ed. in Teacher Leadership, Terri was diagnosed for the second time with breast cancer. She turned her years of being an educator into a purposeful life becoming an educator for breast reconstruction options after mastectomy. She has taken a keen interest in the passage of the Breast Cancer Patient Education Act. She actively participates in social media administering an on-line support group, sharing evidence based research and engaging in community activities that support breast cancer and breast reconstruction. You can find her on Twitter @6state or on Pinterest and Instagram @tgcoutee.
CKN Contributors & Authors
- Karen Malkin-Lazarovitz
- Dr. Daniel Liu
- Jessica Sultaire
- Sara Cohen
- Stephanie Madsen
- Terri Wingham
- Karen Haas
- Dr. Rohan Khandelwal
- Lillie Shockney
- Dr. Lidia Schapira
- Mallory Casperson
- Lisa Feldstein
- Dr. Rob Rutledge
- Dr. Timothy Walker
- Lorna Larson
- Mia Spano-Curtis
- Alix Hayden
- Shannon Cox
- Eden Reynolds
- Jackie Ogg
- Katie Harcourt-Turner
- Samantha Wexler
Current Oncology Section Editors
- Ricardo Moro
- Robert Turcotte
- William Foulkes
- Daniel Rayson
- Martin Chasen
- Lesley Seymour
- Matt Mumber
- Dugald Seely
- Eva Grunfeld
- Natasha Leighl
- Nicole Mittman
- Mary Shariff
- Michael McLean
- Ron Feld
- Timothy R. Asmis
- Doris Howell
- Karin Olson
- Elisabeth Isenring
- Hananel Holzer
- R. Daniel Bonfil
- Robin Fainsinger
- Eric Bouffet
- Samy El-Sayed
- George Shenouda
- Peter Metrakos
- Rona Cheifetz
- Martin Gleave
- Victor Ling
- Richard J. Ablin
- Phil Gold
- Fred Saad