Western College of Veterinary Medicine

Research Area(s)

  • Veterinary medical oncology


Dr. Valerie MacDonald-Dickinson is an associate professor of veterinary medical oncology in the Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences.

Academic Credentials

  • BSc, University of Toronto, Trinity College
  • DVM, University of PEI, Atlantic Veterinary College
  • Residency, Medical Oncology, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Diplomate, American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine (Oncology)

Research Interests

  • Patient quality of life
  • Human-animal bond
  • Novel cancer therapy development
  • Comparative oncology

Dr. MacDonald started the first medical oncology service at the WCVM that includes clinical service, teaching for undergraduate and graduate students, and collaborative research at the University of Saskatchewan. She also works in conjunction with Dr. Jerome Gagnon in medical oncology and Dr. Monique Mayer in radiation oncology.


  • Burgess, H.J., MacDonald Dickinson, V., Kerr, M., Bienzle, D.  2020.  Marginal zone lymphoma in a dog.  Veterinary Clinical Pathology, 49(2): 312-318.  https://www.doi.org/10.1111/vcp.12874

  • Duckett, M.E., MacDonald-Dickinson, V., Dickinson, R.M.  2020.  Extraskeletal osteosarcoma associated with a benign hair follicle tumor in a dog.  Canadian Veterinary Journal, 61(5): 525-529.

  • Greenwood, S., Chow-Lockerbie, B., Epp, T., Knight, C., Wachoski-Dark, G., MacDonald-Dickinson, V., Wobeser, B.  2020.  Prevalence and prognostic impact of Equus caballus Papillomavirus Type 2 Infection in equine squamous cell carcinomas in Western Canadian horses.  Veterinary Pathology, 57(5): 623-631.  https://www.doi.org/10.1177/0300985820941266

  • Campbell, O., MacDonald, V.S., Dickinson, R.M., Gagnon, J.  2019.  Evaluation of the effect of vincristine on platelet count in dogs with lymphoma.  Journal of Small Animal Practice, 60(12): 734-738.  https://www.doi.org/10.1111/jsap.13080 

  • Karkare, S., Allen, K.J.H., Jiao, R., Malo, M.E., Dawicki, W., Helal, M., Godson, D.L., Dickinson, R., MacDonald-Dickinson, V., Yang, R., Hoang, B., Gorlick, R., Geller, D.S., Dadachova, E.  2019.  Detection and targeting insulin growth factor receptor type 2 (IGF2R) in osteosarcoma PDX in mouse models and in canine osteosarcoma tumors.  Scientific Reports, 9(1): 11476.  https://www.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-47808-y 

  • Luethy, D., Frimberger, A.E., Bedenice, D., Byrne, B.S., Groover, E.S., Gardner, R.B., Lewis, T., MacDonald, V.S., Proctor-Brown, L., Tomlinson, J.E., Rassnick, K.M., Johnson, A.L.  2019.  Retrospective evaluation of clinical outcome after chemotherapy for lymphoma in 15 equids (1991-2017).  Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, 33(2): 953-960.  https://www.doi.org/10.1111/jvim.15411

  • Johnston, C.A., MacDonald-Dickinson, V.S., Alcorn, J., Gaunt, M.C.  2017.  Pharmacokinetics and oral bioavailability of metformin hydrochloride in healthy mixed-breed dogs.  American Journal of Veterinary Research, 78(10): 1193-1199.  https://www.doi.org/10.2460/ajvr.78.10.1193

  • Lemetayer, J., Al-Dissi, A., Tryon, K., Macdonald-Dickinson, V.  2017.  Primary intranasal melanoma with brain invasion in a dog.  Canadian Veterinary Journal, 58(4): 391-396.

  • Munasinghe, L.I., Kidney, B.A., MacDonald-Dickinson, V., Larson, V.S., Jackson, M.L., Fernandez, N.J.  2015.  Evaluation of lymph node aspirates at diagnosis and relapse in dogs with high-grade multicentric lymphoma and comparison with survival time.  Veterinary Clinical Pathology, 44(2): 310-319.  https://www.doi.org/10.1111/vcp.12243 

  • Elliot, K, MacDonald, V, Linn, K, Simko, E, Misra, V 2014.  Increase in transcripts for components of the unfolded protein response (UPR) in spontaneous canine tumours.  Canadian Journal of Veterinary Research, 78(3): 161-167. 

  • Dickerson, E.B., Marley, K., Edris, W., Tyner, J.W., Schalk, V., MacDonald, V., Loriaux, M., Druker, B.J., Helfand, S.C.  2013.  Imatinib and dastinib inhibit hemangiosarcoma and implicate PDGFR-B and Src in tumor growth.  Translational Oncology, 6(2): 158-168.  https://www.doi.org/10.1593/tlo.12307

  • Bergeron, T., Zhang, R., Elliot, K., Rapin, N., MacDonald, V., Linn, K., Simko, E., Misra, V.  2013.  The effect of Zhangfei on the unfolded protein response and growth of cells derived from canine and human osteosarcomas.  Veterinary and Comparative Oncology, 11(2): 140-150.  https://www.doi.org/10.1111/j.1476-5829.2011.00310.x

  • Thilikaratne, D.N., Mayer, M.N., MacDonald, V.S., Jackson, M.L., Trask, B.R., Kidney, B.A.  2010.  Clonality and phenotyping of canine lymphomas during remission using PCR on lymph node cytologic smears and peripheral blood.  Canadian Veterinary Journal, 51(1): 79-84.


Dr. MacDonald also writes Oncology Corner for the Canadian Veterinary Journal.