Gilbert’s work is on testing ovarian and endometrial cancers early, saving countless lives.

Montreal—February 2, 2021

As a remarkable leader and change agent, Dr. Lucy Gilbert has been named to the Top Women of Influence™ for 2021—a celebration of Canada’s most accomplished women role models.

As Director of the Division of Gynecologic Oncology and the Women’s Health Research Unit at the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC), Dr. Gilbert has discovered a test to detect ovarian and endometrial cancers early (DOvEE). Ovarian and endometrial cancers are known as “the silent killer” because they present no symptoms until they have spread to other parts of the body. By the time cancer is detected, it is difficult to treat and many women die from it. In fact, ovarian and endometrial cancers are the fourth most common cause of cancer deaths in women.

“When I began my career in medicine, there were very few women, especially in surgery. I was inspired by those few women who had broken that glass ceiling. I hope I can do the same for young women today, especially visible minorities. I want women to know that you can have a family and a big career. The key is believing in yourself and following your passions.” 

Dr. Lucy Gilbert , Director, Gynecologic Cancer Service, McGill University Health Centre

About the DOvEE project

In February 2019, Dr. Lucy Gilbert was awarded the Quebec Science 2018 Discovery of the Year for her DOvEEgene test, a simple diagnostic test that detects ovarian and endometrial cancers in their early stages. To conduct the test, a specially designed swab is inserted into the uterus to gently collect cells. The cells are then tested for signs of cancer using DNA analysis. Dr. Gilbert’s goal is to make the DOvEEgene test a routine part of women’s health, just like the pap smear. Clinical trials for DOvEE are set to begin in May 2021.

The impact of Dr. Gilbert’s work

Dr. Gilbert’s passionate commitment to women’s health will help save millions of lives. The MUHC Foundation celebrates Dr. Gilbert being named to the Top Women of Influence™, and is proud to support her in her ongoing work. The MUHC Foundation is raising $2 million to support Dr. Gilbert’s research and DOvEE clinical trials through its Dream Big campaign.

About the McGill University Health Centre Foundation

The McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) Foundation raises funds to support excellence in patient care, research and teaching at the McGill University Health Centre, one of the top university hospitals in Canada. Our Dream Big Campaign to change the course of lives and medicine is raising millions of dollars to solve humanity’s deadliest puzzles: infectious diseases; end cancer as a life-threatening illness; fix broken hearts through innovative cardiac care; detect the silent killers—ovarian and endometrial cancers—early; create the best skilled health care teams in Canada; and much more. We are rallying our entire community to solve the world’s most complex health care challenges.

About the Top 25 Women of Influence

This award recognizes the extraordinary accomplishments of Canada’s self-identified women and gender-diverse role models. The recipients have all left their mark: contributing to the greater good through their initiatives; using their influence to drive positive change; or reaching inspiring heights on a global stage. From athletes to activists, corporate leaders to up-and-coming entrepreneurs—their unique achievements are impossible to compare against each other, which is why we’ve designed these awards as a celebration, rather than a ranking.

Tarah Schwartz
Director, Communications & Marketing
McGill University Health Centre Foundation

[email protected]

Kelly Albert
Communications Officer
McGill University Health Centre Foundation

[email protected]