Paul Karanicolas

General Surgery


Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
2075 Bayview Ave. , T2-016, Toronto, Ontario Canada M4N 3M5

Dr. Karanicolas is a surgical oncologist at the Odette Cancer Centre. His primary focus is on cancer involving the liver, gallbladder, bile ducts, pancreas, and stomach. In particular, Dr. Karanicolas treats many patients with cancer of the colon or rectum that have spread to the liver. Dr. Karanicolas emphasizes maintenance or improvement in quality-of-life in the care of his patients in addition to cancer treatment.

Dr. Karanicolas leads several clinical trials at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and internationally, with the goal of improving the experience and outcomes of patients have surgery for cancer. He is the head of the HPB CONCEPT Team, a national collaborative group dedicated to advancing the care of patients having liver or pancreas surgery through multicenter clinical trials.

Dr. Karanicolas is the surgical lead for the hepatic arterial infusion pump chemotherapy program at the Odette Cancer Centre. This is the only program of its kind in Canada and offers an additional therapeutic option for patients with colorectal liver metastases that can not be resected.

Dr. Karanicolas obtained his medical degree and general surgical training at the University of Western Ontario, with a PhD in Health Research Methodology from McMaster University. He completed advanced fellowship training in complex surgical oncology at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Centre in New York prior to returning to his home of Toronto.

Research Profile

Administrative Assistant: Cyril Manahan
Phone: 416-480-4774
Fax: 416-480-6002


  • MD, 2003, Western University, Canada
  • PhD, 2008, health research methodology, clinical epidemiology and biostatistics, McMaster University, Canada
  • Resident, 2009, general surgery program, Western University, Canada 
  • Fellowship, 2011, surgical oncology, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, U.S.

Appointments and Affiliations:

  • Scientist, Evaluative Clinical SciencesOdette Cancer Research Program, Sunnybrook Research Institute
  • Surgical oncologist, surgical oncology, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
  • Professor, Department of Surgery, and Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation, University of Toronto

Research Foci:

  • Clinical trials in surgical oncology
  • Hepatopancreaticobiliary surgical outcomes
  • Quality of life in patients with cancer
  • Quality standards in the processes of care for hepatopancreaticobiliary cancer

Research Summary:

The focus of Dr. Karanicolas' research is designing and leading clinical trials in surgical oncology. He spearheaded the establishment of the HepatoPancreaticoBiliary Community of Surgical Oncologists: Clinical, Evaluative, and Prospective Trials Team (HPB CONCEPT Team), a Canada-wide consensus-based framework for liver and pancreas cancer research. The HPB CONCEPT team's goals are to improve the care of patients with HPB cancers through investigator-initiated research and to provide a forum for developing high-impact clinical trials.

Dr. Karanicolas is the principal investigator on several grants funded by different organizations, including the Canadian Institutes of Health Research to develop clinical trials on behalf of this group.

Dr. Karanicolas is also involved in several trials as the Co-Chair of the Canadian Cancer Trials Group (CCTG) Hepatobiliary Disease Oriented Group. Dr. Karanicolas also serves as the Medical and Scientific Director of the Centre for Clinical Trial Support at Sunnybrook Research Institute.

Dr. Karanicolas is the surgical lead for the hepatic arterial infusion pump chemotherapy program at the Odette Cancer Centre. This is the first program of its kind in Canada. It offers an additional therapeutic option for patients with colorectal liver metastases.

Selected Publications:

See current publications list at PubMed.

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