James E. Till

James E. Till
University of Toronto | U of T · Department of Medical Biophysics

PhD

About

255
Publications
13,676
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23,589
Citations
Citations since 2017
2 Research Items
2270 Citations
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20172018201920202021202220230100200300400
20172018201920202021202220230100200300400
Introduction
James E. Till is a Professor Emeritus in the Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Toronto. He is @jimtill on Twitter.

Publications

Publications (255)
Article
Full-text available
1. A direct technique for the measurement of the number of cells in a bone marrow suspension capable of continued proliferation is described. 2. The technique was used to measure the radiation sensitivity of normal mouse bone marrow cells and yielded a D0 of 115 ± 8 rads. © 2012 by Radiation Research Society. All rights of reproduction in any form...
Article
Information about health-related quality of life for patients with breast cancer, obtained using a series of linear analog self-assessment (LASA) scales, has been condensed into four summary scores using factor analysis. Three of these factor scales, incorporating 16 LASA scales related to general health, have been designated Physcial, Emotional, a...
Chapter
Methods of StudyCellular Communication: Systems of StudyS1 and W Genes and the Regulation of MyelopoiesisCFU Repression: An Experimental System for the Study of Cellular CommunicationGranulopoiesis in CultureConclusion AcknowledgementsReferencesDiscussionReferences
Article
The survival of mouse bone marrow after freezing and thawing was assessed using two methods: the spleen-colony technique; and a cell-culture method. The results of these experiments indicate that both methods yield similar estimates of marrow cell viability. It is suggested that the cell-culture method be used as an assay of marrow-cell viability i...
Article
Suspensions of mouse spleen cells were fractionated by means of counter current distribution in an aqueous two-phase polymer system composed of 5% (w/w) dextran and 4% (w/w) polyethylene glycol. Counter current distribution in this combination of polymers was not toxic for hemopoietic colony-forming units (CFU) and yielded a partial separation of C...
Article
From the viewpoint of a researcher with a background in the biomedical and health sciences, John Willinsky's book can be regarded as an experimental intervention designed to stimulate changes in the current system of scholarly publishing. Willinsky's book can also be classified as a policy-oriented intervention. Its goal is 'incremental advances in...
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Cancer-related electronic support groups (ESGs) may be regarded as a complement to face-to-face groups when the latter are available, and as an alternative when they are not. Advantages over face-to-face groups include an absence of barriers imposed by geographic location, opportunities for anonymity that permit sensitive issues to be discussed, an...
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Online information about the availability of clinical trials promises to enhance the accrual of patients into trials. The primary objective of our study was to assess the completeness of online databases of breast cancer clinical trials available in Canada. Eligible online resources were identified through a search of MEDLINE (articles published fr...
Article
Open access to the peer-reviewed primary research literature would greatly facilitate knowledge transfer between the creators and the users of the results of research and scholarship. Criteria are needed to assess the impact of recent initiatives, such as the Budapest Open Access Initiative. For example, how many open-access research journals exist...
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At least some forms of breast cancer are increasingly being viewed as a chronic illness, where an emphasis is placed on meeting the various ongoing needs of people living with cancer, their families and other members of their social support networks. This commentary outlines some approaches to the evaluation of cancer-related support groups, with a...
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The internet is the most comprehensive electronic archive of written material representing our world and peoples' opinions, concerns, and desires. Physicians who surf the internet for the first time are often stunned by what they learn on websites set up by lay people or patient self support communities. Material on these venues can be a rich sourc...
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Although there was an early experiment in the 1960s with the central distribution of paper preprints in the biomedical sciences, these sciences have not been early adopters of electronic preprint servers. Some barriers to the development of a 'preprint culture' in the biomedical sciences are described. Multiple factors that, from the 1960s, fostere...
Article
Recently, a number of electronic biomedical preprints servers, which allow the archiving of electronic papers without prior peer review, have been established, most notably the Clinical Medicine & Health Research NetPrints website and the The Lancet's Electronic Research Archive. These mark an extension to clinical medicine and health research of a...
Article
The theory of reasoned action, which postulates that personal attitudes and external social influences predict intentions to undertake a behavior, was used as a conceptual framework for developing a questionnaire to elicit beliefs and attitudes associated with the decision to participate in a hypothetical cancer chemotherapy trial. After completing...
Article
The framework project of the Advisory Committee on Cancer Control (ACOCC), National Cancer Institute of Canada (NCIC), was based on the NCIC/ACOCC conceptual framework for bridging the gap between research and action. The project was carried out under the auspices of the Sociobehavioural Cancer Research Network (SCRN) of the NCIC. It focused on 3 r...
Article
To determine whether there is regional variation in environmental (non-medical) factors affecting referral decisions of family physicians (FPs). Cross-sectional interview survey. Nova Scotia. A random sample of 125 FPs grouped into 1 of 5 functionally defined geographic regions of Nova Scotia (25 in each group). Groupings were based on access to ge...
Article
Two different views of the Internet are presented. One is from the perspective of an author who has written a personal account of her own breast cancer experience, while the other is from the perspective of a cancer researcher who is interested in quality of life research. The article is written in a format that reflects the somewhat informal style...
Article
A simple mathematical model based on queueing theory is introduced, and used to obtain a sensitive measure of the capacity of a radiation therapy centre to provide service. The model illustrates the relationships among the relevant variables: the patient waiting time, the number on the waiting list, the rate at which requests for radiation therapy...
Article
For nearly two decades, the process of reviewing the ethical merit of research involving human subjects has been based on the application of principles initially described in the U.S. National Commission's Belmont Report, and later articulated more fully by Beauchamp and Childress in their Principles of Biomedical Ethics. Recently, the use of ethic...
Article
The ovarian cancer discussion group is one of a few such groups that can be reached via Internet e-mail. Messages posted by members of this group illustrate very well the kind of "small, intimate benefits" that can be found in the discourse among subscribers to Internet discussion groups of this kind. An example is used to illustrate the interest i...
Article
Interactive communication on the Internet, as illustrated by the e-mail-based breast cancer discussion group, provides an alternative to the telephone, the fax machine and regular mail, and is a resource for communications research, the potential of which is only beginning to be appreciated. At least some of the messages posted to such discussion g...
Article
The process of measuring health-related quality of life (HQL) in oncology is reviewed and the role of these results in clinical practice and clinical trials is discussed. It is determined that comparisons of HQL measurement instruments are needed to clarify which questionnaires are preferable in particular populations or situations. "Calibration" d...
Article
Strategies and processes for the effective dissemination and diffusion of research findings on health-related quality of life (HQL) into practical applications were explored at a workshop held in Montreal in April, 1994. A conceptual model for dissemination and diffusion of evidence about HQL was used to identify five different target groups: HQL a...
Article
The relationship between quality of life (QOL) assessments and decision making, in relation to the delivery of health services, is subjected to critical appraisal. Three levels of decision making in the health care system are taken into account in the analysis. Criticisms of opinion polling provide the basis for the appraisal. Examples of criticism...
Article
Quality of life (QOL) research is reviewed in relation to measurement issues and applications to decision-making. Multidimensional standardized questionnaires provide assessments of different aspects of health-related QOL, including psychological, physical and social functioning as well as symptoms. Formal QOL assessments provide systematic, quanti...
Article
The research question is a crucial aspect of every study. Criteria for the evaluation of the merit of the study question or hypothesis have received surprisingly little attention. A set of non-methodological criteria derived from interviews with 40 researchers (clinical investigators and laboratory scientists) is presented. For both types of resear...
Article
Little research has been undertaken to determine why healthy people agree to enroll in randomized controlled trials of cancer prevention. This study describes the beliefs of Canadian women participating in a trial designed to determine the effect of reducing dietary fat on the development of breast cancer. Healthier eating, nutritional counseling,...
Article
The purpose of this paper is to examine uses of quality of life (QOL) measurements at different levels of decision making within the health care system, ranging from the micro (clinical) level, through the meso (agency, institutional or regional) level to the macro and meta (governmental) levels. We use individualized, group and population-based QO...
Article
To identify nonmedical factors perceived by family physicians (FPs) and consultants as important influences on decisions about referral for consultation, to determine the relative frequency with which such factors are cited and to identify those factors ranked as most important by the FPs and consultants. Survey with semistructured interview betwee...
Article
The development of ways to evaluate interventions that may have an impact on quality of life is a rapidly-developing area of research in clinical oncology, especially within the context of randomized controlled trials. We propose a role for assessments of preferences in such evaluations, including preference studies designed to assess attitudes tow...
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Full textFull text is available as a scanned copy of the original print version. Get a printable copy (PDF file) of the complete article (787K), or click on a page image below to browse page by page. 1385 1386 1387
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To compare two strategies for searching MEDLINE using the CD Plus/MEDLINE program on compact disc. Comparison study. Two search strategies were designed and executed for each of two topics (patient recruitment to clinical trials and attitudes of patients, the public and health care professionals toward clinical trials). Strategy A: searches based o...
Article
The study purpose was to determine whether differences in the weights assigned to various dimensions of health by 90 women in three subgroups (benign breast disease, breast cancer receiving chemotherapy, and breast cancer receiving other therapies) were associated with differences in self-reported health status in these dimensions. Two methods, one...
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Heterogeneity in psychosexual responses to disease-specific diagnosis is demonstrated for two groups of cancer patients with testis cancer and Hodgkin's disease who are comparable in prognosis and treatment intensity. The two groups of patients and their partners are shown to differ in their ability to recover from psychiatric problems associated w...
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Heterogeneity in psychiatric responses to disease specific diagnosis is demonstrated for two groups of cancer patients who are comparable in prognosis and treatment intensity. Implications of this heterogeneity are drawn for etiological study and for planning psychiatric interventions.
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The objective was to examine the way that cancer patients translate verbal descriptors of probability into numerical estimates. A list of words commonly used on consent forms to describe the likelihood for benefits or risks of therapies was provided to 100 cancer patients. Two formats, paper/pencil or computer, were used to provide the list of word...
Article
The major purpose was to explore the use of written case scenarios to investigate factors associated with regional variations in referral for consultation. Data were collected in Nova Scotia, where extensive computer-based records of utilization of health services are kept, and the nine health care regions are in sufficient proximity to make visits...
Article
We developed a consent form for a hypothetical trial and asked patients to underline information that was pertinent to their decision to accept or refuse to participate in the proposed trial. We also investigated whether patients correctly interpreted statements describing the probability of certain events occurring. Of the 50 patients, 74% did not...
Article
Full-text available
We developed a consent form for a hypothetical trial and asked patients to underline information that was pertinent to their decision to accept or refuse to participate in the proposed trial. We also investigated whether patients correctly interpreted statements describing the probability of certain events occurring. Of the 50 patients, 74% did not...
Article
Full-text available
To identify the characteristics of exemplary family physicians and consultants, we interviewed 25 family physicians and 25 consultants (5 each in the specialties of internal medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, psychiatry and surgery) selected by their peers as being exemplary in their own practice setting. The results indicated that th...
Article
This research examined the equivalence of the workload estimates of three commonly used patient classification systems in nursing (GRASP, PRN and Medicus). Patient classification systems are used for program costing and formulation of the nursing budgets. The findings suggest that the estimates of absolute hours of care provided by the three system...
Article
This study examines the differences in workload estimates of three patient classification systems in nursing within selected Case Mix Groups (CMGs). The amount of variation explained by selected patient-specific variables within CMGs on average nursing workload by each system is also analyzed. Results show that, when patient classification data are...
Article
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The relationship between cancer patients' desire for information and their preference for participation in decision making has been examined. Approximately 77% of the 52 patients reported that they had participated in decision making to the extent that they wished, while most of the remaining 23% would have preferred an opportunity to have greater...
Article
This study examines the differences in workload estimates of three patient classification systems in nursing, within selected Case Mix Groups (CMGs). The amount of variation explained by selected patient-specific variables within CMGs on average nursing workload by each system is also analyzed. Results show that, when patient classification data ar...
Article
One of the central problems in studies of patient satisfaction with health care is the development of reliable and valid methods to determine the relative importance of different aspects of health care. Two techniques, paired comparisons and rating on a visual analogue scale, were compared in terms of their consistency with logical assumptions, tes...
Article
Evaluating the effectiveness of nursing interventions is an integral part of the nursing process and a streamlined measurement method to evaluate emotional well-being would appear to have great potential use in busy clinical settings. A six-item linear analogue self-assessment (LASA) scale derived from the Profile of Mood States (POMS) was develope...
Article
Information about health-related quality of life for patients with breast cancer, obtained using a series of linear analog self-assessment (LASA) scales, has been condensed into four summary scores using factor analysis. Three of these factor scales, incorporating 16 LASA scales related to general health, have been designated Physical, Emotional, a...
Chapter
A new and fertile field of cancer research has begun to take shape over the past decade. It is based on an increasing awareness of the need for ways to measure aspects of the quality of life, with particular emphasis on those related to health. This development can be attributed to several factors, some arising from within oncology, and others exte...
Article
Much attention has been paid to the use of ethical principles to guide the conduct of clinical trials. Less has been done to clarify and assess the "weights" assigned by clinicians (and others) to the values that come into conflict when patients are offered entry into trials. Quantitative techniques of value assessment were used to measure the rela...
Article
Several methodologic issues arise in eliciting preferences for therapy. Examples are the selection of appropriate descriptions of treatment outcomes and of elicitation techniques. Of particular importance is the correspondence of patients' anticipated preferences for treatment to actual preferences once they have experienced treatment. Treatment ou...
Article
A mathematical model for proliferation of tumour cell populations is developed. The cell population is assumed to be organized in a hierarchy of decreasing proliferative potential and increasing degree of differentiation. Using some elements of the theory of Multi-type Galton-Watson processes, a method is proposed for the estimation of Psr, the pro...
Article
In oncology there is increasing interest in the development of techniques to help patients choose between alternative therapies in ways that are consistent with their preferences. The purpose of this study was to examine some methodological problems associated with the elicitation of preferences. Preferences for alternative drug therapies were soug...
Article
Information is available regarding tumor control rate and survival for patients with cancer of the larynx. Less well known are the effects of treatment upon the patient's quality of voice and way of life because there is at present no suitable method for the routine clinical assessment of these effects. This paper reports some results of the evalua...
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In health status index construction quantitative values for different states of health are frequently obtained by presenting written descriptions to raters whose values are elicited using one or more methods. In this study the authors examined the influence of several aspects of this measurement process upon the quantitative results obtained. They...
Article
Although quantitative estimates of patients' attitudes toward the relative importance of different aspects of health are of great potential usefulness in medical decision making, there is little information about the stability of such values over time, particularly in patients whose clinical state is changing. To examine these questions, we selecte...
Article
This study evaluated the reliability and sensitivity of laryngeal cancer patients' linear analogue self-assessments (LASA) of voice quality. Thirty patients completed LASA scales for a number of voice-related symptoms and abilities several times during a standard treatment programme. The study design allowed evaluation of the scales' reliability, b...
Article
A simple stem cell model of human tumor growth is presented. Three tumor cell populations are predicted: stem, transitional, and end cells. The properties of these cells are discussed in terms of their behavior in currently available technologies for investigation of cell kinetics and for their influence on clinical outcome. Stem cell renewal, tran...
Article
The standard gamble, derived from decision theory, is considered a criterion method for obtaining patients' values for different health states. In this method, a rater's value for a health state is obtained by determining, in a hypothetical setting, his readiness to remain in that state or take a risky choice with different outcomes of known value....
Article
Women in two Ontario cities were asked to express their preferences about a medical decision: A fictitious patient with cancer was to be treated either conservatively without hope of cure, or radically, by a risky treatment having cure or immediate death as possible outcomes. Situation-specific variables were varied systematically across the sample...
Article
The purpose of this study was to examine attitudes toward the duration of survival in different health states. Health professionals were asked to consider hypothetical situations in which a specified period of time would be spent in a defined health state. Preferences for these different situations were assessed using two methods--a Preference Ques...
Article
The stem cell concept continues to be very useful both for studies on cellular differentiation and for studies on neoplasia. At present the concept is being enlarged to include consideration of a new aspect: stem cell genetics, at the molecular level. Some questions are still to be answered. What is the basis for genetic regulation of "commitment,"...
Article
The survival experience of 982 non-Hodgkin's lymphoma patients registered at Princess Margaret Hospital, Toronto, between 1967 and 1975, was studied. Prognostic groups were obtained by means of a classification procedure based on standard statistical techniques; the variables utilized in the classification were ones of known reproducibility which c...
Article
A model of the evolution of acute myeloblastic leukemia (AML) as a clonal hemopathy is presented and reviewed in light of the available data on the behavior of leukemic blast-stem cell colonies. The model postulates that determination of a pluripotent stem cell of a leukemic clone occurs abruptly with intermediate stem cell classes being rare. Tran...
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A better understanding of normal differentiation continues to be an essential prerequisite for assessing abnormal hemopoiesis. The variation inherent in abnormal differentiation can be explained most simply as a multistage process involving progressive changes in clones derived from abnormal pluripotent stem cells. Any practical application of this...
Article
Analysis of a group of 79 patients with previously untreated Hodgkin's disease, whose HLA phenotypes were determined in 1972-73, shows that patients in a sub-group with the specificities collectively known as Aw19 have significantly poorer survival than patients without these specificities. The degree to which the serologically-detectable HLA antig...
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A framework is developed to take explicitly into account the conflicting demands of ethics and scientific rigor in the design of clinical trials. The framework recognizes the part played by the clinical-scientific community in the weighing of a new result provided by a clinical trial. To illustrate the usefulness of the framework, a value system is...
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We have examined the properties of hybrid cells formed by polyethylene glycol-mediated fusion of the GRC+L-73 line of Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells with peripheral blood cells from patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) or with bone marrow cells from patients with malignant lymphoma. The results indicate that hybrid cells can be detec...
Article
The number of marrow granulopoietic progenitors (CFU-C) was measured in patients with no malignant disease, acute myeloid leukemia at presentation (AML) and preleukemia. The marrow CFU-C number was not diagnostic of hematologic status for the individual patient, although colony formation was always present in patients without malignancy. However, t...
Article
Blast cells from patients with Acute Myeloblastic Leukemia (AML) were separated according to cell size using velocity sedimentation under unit gravity. Fractions obtained in this way were plated in methyl cellulose with a growth stimulator present in media conditioned by leukocytes in the presence of phytohemagglutinin (PHA-LCM). Colonies of blast...
Article
We have examined the properties of hybrid cells formed by polyethylene glycol-mediated fusion of the GRC+L-73 line of Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells with peripheral blood cells from patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) or with bone marrow cells from patients with malignant lymphoma. The results indicate that hybrid cells can be detec...
Article
A colony assay available for a subpopulation of acute myeloblastic leukemia blasts with proliferative potential was used to measure adriamycin (adria) and daunorubicin (dauno) dose-response curves following brief exposure to either drug and washing. The dose-response curves were simple negative exponentials that might be characterized by D10 (dose...
Article
Outcomes of the "practice" of groups of physicians working over two consecutive time intervals at the Princess Margaret Hospital have been compared. During the first interval (1970-1974), a remission induction regimen of cyclophosphamide, cytosine arabinoside and vincristine was used. During the second (1974-1976), the regimen consisted of adriamyc...
Article
Peripheral blood from patients with acute myeloblastic leukemia (AML) contains cells capable of giving rise to colonies in culture when stimulated by media conditioned by leukocytes (LCM) in the presence of phytohemagglutinin (PHA). Two types of colonies are recognized with high frequency: The first grows in the presence of low concentrations of PH...
Article
Using colony assays for human erythropoietic (BFU-E, CFU-E) and granulopoietic (CFU-C) progenitors, normal and leukemic myelopoietic differentiation were compared; similar patterns were found in both. However, the origin of blast cells characteristic of the disease could not be established indicating the need for a direct approach to these cells. A...
Article
Peripheral blood from patients with acute myeloblastic leukemia (AML) contains cells capable of giving rise to colonies in culture when stimulated by media conditioned by leukocytes (LCM) in the presence of phytohemagglutinin (PHA). Two types of colonies are recognized with high frequency: The first grows in the presence of low concentrations of PH...
Article
Correlation analysis of numbers of colony-forming progenitor cells was used as an approach to the quantitation of human pluripotent stem cells. Marrow specimens were obtained from 24 patients with untreated acute myeloblastic leukemia, 22 patients under treatment, and 29 patients with no hematologic malignant disease. Three classes of progenitor ce...

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