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Patricia Brubaker
(photo by Johnny Guatto)

Patricia Brubaker receives Diabetes Canada Lifetime Achievement Award

November 6, 2020

Professor Patricia Brubaker of the University of Toronto’s Temerty Faculty of Medicine is the first woman to receive the Diabetes Canada Lifetime Achievement Award.

The award recognizes a Canadian medical doctor or scientist for their leadership in diabetes research and longstanding contributions to the diabetes community in Canada.

“When I think about lifetime achievement, I think about the joy of discovery,” Brubaker said. “That eureka moment keeps me going. I would say my most significant contributions have been my work on the implications of glucagon-like peptide 1 in diabetes, as well as the discovery and application of glucagon-like peptide 2 as a new treatment for short bowel syndrome.

“Aside from the discovery aspect, my lifetime achievement has been the joy of interacting with my amazing trainees who challenge me and keep me engaged. I have a wall of photographs in my office...I think I have one up of every person I’ve trained. Those relationships I have built over the years are a real source of pride.”

Brubaker was nominated for the award by renowned U of T endocrinologist Professor Daniel Drucker. He said Brubaker, a Canada Research Chair and fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, is “one of the most honest and critical scientists I've been privileged to work with” as well as one of the most unselfish, volunteering her time to fill numerous leadership positions.

“As Professor Brubaker's work has shown us over the last several decades, she has become one of the international leaders in the biology of the glucagon-like peptides,” Drucker said in a congratulatory video. “This work has had tremendous translational impact and Pat has been at the forefront of this exciting wave of research.

“Although she is receiving the lifetime achievement award, she continues to carry out research at the highest level, even today.”