Leonard Luyt, PhD


Leonard Luyt


Senior Scientist: London Regional Cancer Program, London Health Sciences Centre, London, Ontario

Associate Professor: Department of Oncology, Western University, London, Ontario

Cross Appointments: Department of

Chemistry, Department of Medical Imaging


Mailing Address

London Regional Cancer Program
Cancer Research Laboratory Program

Room A4-817A
790 Commissioners Rd. E.
London, Ontario
Canada N6A 4L6

Tel:        519-685-8600 Ext. 53302
Email:    lluyt@uwo.ca

Twitter: @LuytGroup

University Website:www.LuytGroup.com

Google Scholar: Luyt Google Scholar



Staff and Trainees

Graduate Students

Alexandra Hauser-Kawaguchi

T: 519-685-8600 x56853

Tyler Lalonde

T: 519-685-8600 x56853

Marina Lazarak

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Jordan LeSarge

T: 519-685-8600 x53299

Emily Murrell

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Will Turnbull

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UnderGraduate Students


Mariel Bulcan-Gnirss

T: 519-685-8600 x53299

Geran Tu

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Research Associates


Mark Milne, PhD

T: 519-685-8600 x53299

Lihai Yu, PhD

T: 519-685-8600 x56853


Research Area

Bioorganic and medicinal chemistry, molecular imaging probe design, targeting cancer via GPCRs, radiochemistry.

Key Words

Molecular imaging, peptide receptors, G protein-coupled receptor, radiopharmaceuticals.

Summary of Current Work

Our research program involves the design, preparation, and evaluation of new compounds for the imaging and treatment of cancer. Many cancer tumours have an abundance of peptide receptors located on the surface of the tumour cells, mostly belonging to the G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) superfamily. By using the peptides that normally bind to these receptors as the starting point, we are designing variations of these compounds such that they will contain a radioactive component, yet still bind to the intended peptide receptor, and have appropriate in vivo behaviour. Thus, a radioactive peptide-like compound will be injected into a patient, will localize in the cancer tumour, and using an external camera an image of the tumour will be viewed. This approach also has potential use as a method of treatment for cancer.

As part of this program of creating new cancer imaging and therapeutic agents, new chemical methods and technologies for the preparation of these novel compounds are being developed. While radiopharmaceuticals are a primary focus of our research, our group is also pursuing probes for other molecular imaging modalities (such as optical imaging), and small molecule cancer therapeutics.Students involved in research in our group acquire synthetic organic chemistry, solid-phase organic chemistry, peptide/peptidomimetic design, bioconjugation, and radiolabelling skills. This research requires interaction with cancer and imaging scientists and group members are able to take projects from the basic chemistry stage through to animal model studies.

PubMed Publications

See my publications on PubMed