Latest projects will offer new hope for Canadian patients with
OTTAWA, March 26, 2013 /CNW/ - Canadians with debilitating diseases will
soon benefit from new personalized approaches to treatment thanks to
researchers across the country and funding from the Harper Government.
Joy Smith, Member of Parliament for Kildonan-St. Paul, on behalf of the
Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of Health, today announced an
investment of $13.7 million to support four research projects in
Ontario, as part of the national announcement made by the Honourable
Gary Goodyear, Minister of State (Science and Technology), alongside
Mike Lake, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry. The
announcement was made during a visit to the Children's Hospital of
Eastern Ontario (CHEO) in Ottawa to learn more about a project, under
Dr. Kym Boycott's leadership, that will use new technologies to
identify the genes implicated in many rare disorders and test treatment
against the identified genes.
"Our government recognizes that genomics is a science at the core of the
global bio-economy and offers a myriad of social and economic
benefits," said Mrs. Smith. "Through our investments in applied
genomics research, we are fostering Canada's innovative capability,
while creating jobs and supporting long-term economic growth. These
projects have the potential to transform the way health care is
delivered in Canada, including improvements in clinical practice,
better treatment and outcomes for patients and a more efficient,
cost-effective health care system."
The projects are part of a major $150 million genomics and personalized
health competition, a Genome Canada—Canadian Institutes of Health
Research (CIHR) partnership.
Seventeen projects in total have been approved for funding, each valued
in the range of $3 million to $13 million. The projects will focus on
the application of genomics to tailor patient treatments and therapies
in fields as diverse as epilepsy, autism, HIV/AIDS, cancer,
cardiovascular disease, rare neurological diseases, and stroke, among
others. The projects will be spearheaded by some of Canada's top
researchers and leading teams at academic institutions across Ontario.
The research projects will examine:
Enhanced CARE for RARE genetic diseases in Canada (Kym Boycott,
Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario and University of Ottawa)
Autism spectrum disorders: Genomes to outcomes (Stephen Scherer, The
Hospital for Sick Children)
Early detection of patients at high risk of esophageal adenocarcinoma
(Lincoln Stein, Ontario Institute for Cancer Research)
The microbiota at the intestinal mucosa-immune interface: A gateway for
personalized health (Alain Stintzi, Children's Hospital of Eastern
Ontario and University of Ottawa)
In light of this competition, the Harper Government has invested
approximately $45 million through Genome Canada, $24 million through
CIHR and $2 million from the Cancer Stem Cell Consortium. The balance
of funding is secured by regional Genome Centres from provincial
governments, health charities, the private sector and other partners.
"What's exciting about these projects is that each one holds enormous
potential for breakthroughs where there is a serious clinical need.
Personalized health is about tailoring treatment and medicines to the
individual patient based on their unique genetic makeup and this is
only possible through advances in genomics research, " said Dr. Pierre
Meulien, President and CEO of Genome Canada.
"Our partnership with Genome Canada and the Cancer Stem Cell Consortium
is providing us with the ability to invest in a fashion that will
impact many areas of health such as infection, cancer and rare
diseases," said Dr. Alain Beaudet, President of CIHR. The projects
announced today have the potential of allowing physicians to make
better informed decisions and of providing patients with the best
treatments and diagnoses possible."
To build on Genome Canada's achievements to date, Economic Action Plan
2013 proposes to provide $165 million in 2014-15 to support Genome
Canada's multi-year strategic plan.
Since 2006, the Harper Government has provided more than $9 billion in
new funding for initiatives to support science, technology and the
growth of innovative firms, helping to foster a world-class research
and innovation system. Economic Action Plan 2013 is proposing to build
on this strong foundation, helping to position Canada for sustainable,
long-term economic prosperity and a higher quality of life for
A complete list of the successful projects is available on Genome
Canada's website at www.genomecanada.ca.
SOURCE: Canadian Institutes of Health Research
For further information:
Director of Communications
Office of the Honourable Gary Goodyear
Minister of State (Science and Technology)
Director of Communications
Office of the Honourable Leona Aglukkaq
Minister of Health