Dr. Keeley received a PhD in Pharmacology and Therapeutics in 1970 from the University of Manitoba. After postdoctoral studies in England (1970-72) and at The Hospital for Sick Children (1972-73), he joined the scientific staff of the Research Institute in1973. He served from 1995 to 2013 as Associate Chief of Research (Space and Infrastructure), and was a member of the planning and implementation team for the construction of the PGCRL. As a Senior Scientist Emeritus in the Molecular Medicine Program, he continues his studies on the biochemistry of the extracellular elastic matrix.
Keeley has a long-standing interest in the biochemistry of connective tissue proteins and most specifically in elastin, an unusual, rubber-like protein that gives the properties of extensibility and elastic recoil to large arteries, heart valves and many other tissues. These are uncommon properties for a protein, and our particular interest is in how the sequence of elastin determines such physical properties. He studies how alterations in protein sequence can affect elastic properties, with both physiological and potentially pathological consequences. His research has involved both recombinant modeling of elastin proteins and, most recently, an analysis of sequence characteristics of elastin and related extracellular matrix proteins conserved over more that 500 million years of evolution.
Education and experience
- 1961–1965: B.Sc. (Hons.), Dept. of Chemistry, Univ. of Manitoba
- 1965–1970: PhD, Dept. of Pharmacology and Therapeutics, Univ. of Manitoba
- 1970–1972: Postdoctoral fellow, Agricultural Research Council, Langford, Bristol, England
- 1972–1973: Postdoctoral fellow, Dept. of Biochemistry, SickKids Research Institute
- 1973–1983: Scientist, Dept. of Biochemistry, SickKids Research Institute
- 1975–present: Assist. Professor/Assoc. Professor/Professor, Dept. of Biochemistry, Univ. of Toronto
- 1983–2014: Senior Scientist, Molec. Structure & Function/Molecular Medicine Program, SickKids Research Institute
- 1987–2019: Assoc. Professor/Professor, Dept. of Clinical Biochemistry/Dept. of Lab. Medicine & Pathobiology, Univ. of Toronto
- 1989–2002: Assoc. Head, Cardiovascular Research Program, SickKids Research Institute
- 1995–2013: Assoc. Chief, SickKids Research Institute
- 1997–1999: Chair, Research & Development Review Committee, Heart & Stroke Foundation of Ontario
- 1997–2001: Board of Directors, Heart & Stroke Foundation of Ontario
- 1997–2003: Research Policy Committee, Heart & Stroke Foundation of Ontario
- 2000–2010: Finance Committee, Heart & Stroke Foundation of Ontario
- 2000–2011: Director of Research, Elastin Specialties, Inc.
- 2002–2006: Interim Head, Cardiovascular Research Program, SickKids Research Institute
- 2015–present: Senior Scientist Emeritus, Molecular Medicine Program, SickKids Research Institute
- 1991: Chair, Gordon Research Conference on Elastin
- 2003–2013: Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario/Robert M. Freedom Chair in Cardiovascular Science, SickKids
- 2012: Nominated to President's Circle, SickKids