Student Directory

Francis LeBlanc

Francis LeBlanc

Class Year: G5


  • M.D./Ph.D. Program

Contact Information:

Biographical Information:

Hometown: Cambridge, Ontario, Canada


Undergraduate Education:  BS/08 Chemistry & Physiology/U of W. Ontario

Research Interests:

Research Interest: drug discovery, leukemia and lymphoma and other blood disorders, sphingolipid signaling
Graduate Program: Molecular Medicine


Description: LGL leukemia is a rare proliferative disorder with two classifications - CD3+T-LGL and CD3-/NK-LGL.  These patients typically present with various cytopenias leading to complications such as anemia and chronic infection associated with neutropenia.  In addition, there is an unusual association with a variety of autoimmune diseases.  My project focuses on the NK-LGL subtype and will investigate the sphingolipid rheostat and it's role in leukemia pathogenesis; specifically sphingosine-1-phosphat signaling through S1PR5 and it's role as a survival pathway.  This will hopefully uncover possible therapeutic targets as NK-LGL is currently an incurable disease, with death occurring in the acute form within a few months of diagnosis.

Meeting Presentations
  • 2008
    Southern Ontario Undergraduate Student chemistry Conference, Queen's University
    Lawson Health Research Day, London Health Sciences Center
  • 2012
    American Society of Hematology (ASH), Atlanta, GA
  • 2014
    National MD/PhD Student Conference, Keystone, CO (poster)
    AACR Special Conference on Hematological Malignancies, Philadelphia, PA (poster)


Ding W, You H, Dang H, LeBlanc F, Galicia V, Lu SC, Stiles B, Rountree CB (2010) Epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition of murine liver tumor cells promotes invasion Hepatology 52(3):945-53  PMCID:  PMC3032356

LeBlanc F, Zhang D, Liu X, Loughran Jr. TP (2012) LGL leukemia:  From dysregulated pathways to therapeutic targets Future Oncology 8(7):787-801  PMCID:  PMC3464048

Jerez A, Clemente MJ, Makishima H, Koskela H, LeBlanc F, Ng KP, Olson T, Przychodzen B, Afable M, Gomez-Segui I, Guinta K, Durkin L, Hsi ED, McGraw K, Zhang D, Wlodarski MW, Porkka K, Sekeres MA, List A, Mustjoki S, Loughran TP, Maciejewski JP (2012) STAT3 mutations unify the pathogenesis of chronic lymphoproliferative disorders of NK cells and T cell large granular lymphocyte leukemia. Blood 120(15):3048-57  PMCID:  PMC3471515

LeBlanc FR, Hasanali ZS, Loughran TP Jr. (2013) Does IL-15 have a causative role in large granular lymphocyte leukemia? Immunotherapy 5(3):231-4  PMCID:  (no number)

Jerez A, Clemente MJ, Makishima H, Rajala H, Gomez-Segui I, Olson T, McGraw K, Przychodzen B, Kulasekararaj A, Afable M, Husseinzadeh HD, Hosono N, LeBlanc F, Lagstrom S, Zhang D, Ellonen P, Tichelli A, Nissen C, Lichtin AE, Wodnar-Filipowicz A, Mufti GJ, List AF, Mustjoki S, Loughran TP Jr, Maciejewski JP (2013) STAT3 mutations indicate the presence of subclinical T-cell clones in a subset of aplastic anemia and myelodysplastic syndrome patients Blood 122(14):2453-9  PMCID: PMC3790512

Poullot E, Zambello R, LeBlanc F, Bareau B, De March E, Roussel M, Boulland, Houot R, Renault A, Fest T, Semenzato G, Loughran T Jr, Lamy T (2014) Chronic natural killer lymphoproliferative disorders:  characteristics of an international cohort of 70 patients Ann Oncol 2014 Aug 5 pii: mdu369 [Epub ahead of print]  PMCID:  (no number)

Steinway SN, LeBlanc F, Loughran TP Jr (2014) The pathogenesis and treatment of large granular lymphocyte leukemia Blood Rev 28(3):87-94  PMCID:  (no number)

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