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 Conte (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. 


Dr. Athanasios Psihogios, ND

Naturopathic Doctor & Research Resident

Athanasios (Thanasi) Psihogios is an integrative oncology researcher dedicated to advancing this pioneer-type field in order to provide patients with safe and efficacious therapy options to support their overall care. In addition to investigating treatments, with his background in and passion for philosophy, Thanasi is also particularly interested in the reasoning and modes of thinking behind peoples’ decision to use complementary and alternative medicine. Thanasi as the newest research resident at the OICC  is keen to see his academic work facilitate better integrative care for patients with cancer.

Over the last 3 years, Thanasi has worked as a lead researcher, currently as a supervisor, with the Oncology Association of Naturopathic Physicians (OncANP) on the Knowledge in Naturopathic Oncology Website (KNOW) Database. This project is dedicated to collecting, summarizing and critically appraising integrative oncology research to be utilized by clinicians to make evidence-informed clinical decisions. Prior to being starting as the OICC research resident, Thanasi was a volunteer research assistant with the clinic, with his most notable project involvement being the Integrative Pediatric Oncology Program (IPOP). His work on this project, pertaining to practice trends in naturopathic pediatric cancer care, has been published in a peer-reviewed medical journal and presented at a conference.

Thanasi graduated from the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine with a Doctor of Naturopathy degree. He received a BA from the University of Ottawa, with a focus on both health science and philosophy.

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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