Improving Quality of Life

Research Staff

Dr. Dugald Seely, ND, M.Sc.

Founder & Executive Director

DugaldDugald Seely is a naturopathic doctor and researcher who is playing a leading role in helping develop the field of integrative and naturopathic oncology. 

As founder and executive director of the Ottawa Integrative Cancer Centre (OICC), Dugald is pioneering a contemporary cancer treatment model based on scientifically grounded, evidence-informed complementary medicine. With the establishment of the first integrative cancer care and research centre in Eastern Canada, Dugald and his team are providing whole-person integrative care to people living with cancer and addressing research gaps in whole-systems of cancer care. Dugald completed his M.Sc. in cancer research at the University of Toronto and is a Fellow of the American Board of Naturopathic Oncology (FABNO). As a clinician scientist, Dugald has been awarded competitive grant and trainee funding from CIHR, CBCRA, the SickKids Foundation, the Lotte and John Hecht Memorial Foundation, the Ottawa Regional Cancer Foundation, and the Gateway for Cancer Research. Dugald has led numerous research projects and most recently secured funding for the largest integrative naturopathic cancer care clinical trial ever conducted in North America. In addition to clinical research, Dugald has conducted and supervised dozens of synthesis reviews and meta-analyses with the goal of building on the growing body the evidence that supports integrative oncology.

Outside the clinical and leadership roles at the Ottawa Integrative Cancer Centre, Dugald serves as the director of research & clinical epidemiology at the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine and is an affiliate investigator for the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute. Dugald is also a section editor for Integrative Oncology in the Current Oncology Journal and a board member of the Oncology Association of Naturopathic Physicians (OncANP). Past board member for the Society of Integrative Oncology (SIO), Dugald was also appointed to Health Canada’s Expert Advisory Panel for the Vigilance of Health Products for which he served three years. He has published more than 50 Medline indexed peer-reviewed publications. Dugald believes strongly in the ability of evidence-based medicine to effect positive change in the health-care system and is actively building on this base. As an educator, researcher, clinician, and frequent speaker at conferences around the world, Dugald is seeking to shift the debate towards a more whole-person cancer care model that is espoused by integrative oncology.

Click here for  Dugald Seely’s Integrative Oncology Peer-Reviewed Publications, Book Chapters and Reports.


Dr. Ellen McDonell, ND

Naturopathic Doctor & Research Resident

Ellen McDonell is a naturopathic doctor focusing on integrative cancer care.  In her clinical practice, she uses evidence-based therapies to decrease side effects of conventional therapy, adjunctively treat and prevent cancer, and optimize overall health. Therapies include clinical nutrition and supplementation, exercise, botanical medicine, lifestyle counseling and acupuncture. Ellen is also involved with the research department at the OICC, where she works to bridge the gap between conventional and complementary healthcare by studying the effects of an integrative approach to cancer care.  She strongly believes in the combination of conventional and complementary healthcare, and works alongside conventional treatment to optimize positive results.

Ellen obtained her degree in naturopathic medicine from The Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine (CCNM). While at CCNM she completed a yearlong focus shift in adjunctive cancer care at the Robert Schad Naturopathic Clinic. Previously, Ellen served as the President of the Naturopathic Students Association, and was the recipient of the Leadership Award presented by the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine. Prior to studying naturopathic medicine, Ellen obtained a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry from the University of Ottawa. 


Julie Ennis, PhD

Research Fellow

Julie Ennis is passionate about research into the role that nutrition, physical activity, psychological and social support can play in the prevention and treatment of cancer. She completed her Bachelor of Science degree in Life Sciences at Queen’s University in 2008. She began her research career in the Department of Nutritional Sciences at the University of Toronto where she completed her Master’s and PhD degrees in 2010 and 2015, respectively. Her graduate research focused on the effects of bioactive compounds found in flaxseed in breast cancer and the potential interactions with conventional breast cancer treatment. She has extensive experience in basic science research involving cell culture and animal models. Julie gained experience in epidemiological research while working in the Population Health and Prevention division of Cancer Care Ontario where she focused on developing tools used for dietary exposure assessment in the Ontario Environment and Health Study, a breast cancer case-control study. At the Ottawa Integrative Cancer Centre, Julie is involved in the conduct a number of the ongoing integrative oncology clinical research studies and the design of upcoming research studies.


Linlu Zhao, PhD

Research Fellow

Linlu Zhao comes from an interdisciplinary health sciences background and is passionate about integrative medicine and its assessment through rigorous research. Linlu completed his undergraduate training in Biomedical Science at the University of Ottawa and doctoral studies in Epidemiology and Public Health at Yale University. Linlu has previously worked in the areas of cancer epidemiology, genetic epidemiology and knowledge translation. At the Ottawa Integrative Cancer Centre (OICC), Linlu is involved in the conduct of several ongoing integrative oncology clinical research studies and knowledge synthesis projects. 

Voices of Support

“For far too long, disciplines have worked in isolation without communication and our patients have often felt caught between differing therapeutic philosophies, often to their detriment. This is a wonderful initiative. An integrative program will help provide a much needed bridge.”

Shailendra Verma, MD, FRCPC, FACP (chair)
Medical Oncologist, The Ottawa Hospital 

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