Dr. Mark Erwin

DC, PhD, Department of Surgery, University of Toronto
  • 2009-2013 Professorship in Disc Biology


Dr. Erwin’s team developed a recombinant cocktail to regenerate degenerated discs

“The rationale for our novel, molecular disc intervention is to provide a therapy for the treatment of patients suffering from the effects of degenerative disc disease for which, now, there is no effective treatment.”Dr. Mark Erwin

Stopping disc degeneration in its tracks

As a chiropractor, Dr. Erwin became frustrated with his patients’ painful back issues caused by degenerative disc conditions that were untreatable.The focus of his research concerns degenerative spinal disease, principally degenerative disc disease and osteoarthritis.

FUTURE RESEARCH IMPACT: Increasing Chiropractic Credibility

Dr. Erwin’s research will lead to a minimally invasive therapy to treat degenerative disc disease and contribute to the rehabilitation of patients living with degenerative disc disease.

Dr. Erwin’s team is investigating the next generation of cellular/molecular therapy for degenerative spinal disease. Their most exciting discovery to date has been the result of over 18 years of fundamental scientific work – the discovery of the essential molecules that are the building blocks of the disc. When injected into an injured disc, these essential molecules (‘the magic stuff’) stop degeneration and, in pre-clinical animal models, return injured discs to a near normal state.

“When one considers the experts in the field who are studying the molecular biology of the intervertebral disc, Dr. Mark Erwin’s name rapidly rises to the top of the list. Most certainly, the clinical implications of his research findings are soon to be realized. Dr. Erwin is to be congratulated for this ground breaking work.” – Dr. James T. Rutka, MD, PhD, FRCSC, FACS, FAAP, FAANS,RS McLaughlin Professor and Chair, Department of Surgery, University of Toronto

The team just completed and published the results of its small and large animal trials, as well as obtained data from human disc cells. These data clearly demonstrate that Dr. Erwin’s therapy delivered a regenerative effect on degenerated discs. Dr. Erwin is a chiropractic researcher on the edge of life-changing discoveries for millions of Canadians living with degenerative disc disease, osteoarthritis and other spinal diseases.

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