Pfizer supports young researchers in mental health and rare diseases

Pfizer Ripples of Hope Awards granted to four outstanding researchers

VANCOUVER, Jan. 19, 2012 /CNW Telbec/ - Pfizer Canada is pleased to announce four recipients of the annual Pfizer Ripples of Hope Awards. Bibiana Wong and Liza Sutton are both post-doctoral fellows at the University of British Columbia and are respectively the recipients of the Pfizer Ripples of Hope Award for Mental Health and for Rare Diseases. The second recipient of the Mental Health award is Alice Hawkins, who is pursuing a PhD in Interdisciplinary studies in Ethics and Medical Genetics at the University of British Columbia. Safia Ladha, who is in the final stages of her Masters in Science at the University of British Columbia, is the second recipient of the Rare Diseases award and also in her pursuit of a career in Medical Genetics.

"Now in its third year, the Ripples of Hope awards continue supporting the vision and dreams of young researchers," said Dr. Hayden, co-founder of the award and Director of the Centre for Molecular Medicine and Therapeutics at the Child & Family Research Institute. "This year, the quality of the applications we received was exemplary, making our selection very difficult. I am thrilled with our final decision. I look forward to witnessing the career development of this year's recipients and their contributions to finding treatment and prevention approaches for rare diseases and mental health."

"We are delighted to once again support the Ripples of Hope Awards," said Paul Levesque, President, Pfizer Canada.  "We understand the importance of research into the development of novel treatments for rare diseases which is also a key priority for Pfizer and we are pleased to support young talented researchers who pursue careers in this area."

Created in 2008, the Pfizer Ripples of Hope Trainee Awards in Mental Health and Rare Diseases support new scientists in British Columbia in their quest to make major contributions to human health. The awards were made possible after Pfizer Canada established two endowment funds at the BC Children's Hospital Foundation for $700,000 in Mental Health and Rare Diseases and Dr. Michael Hayden pledged the prize he had received from the Canadian Institutes for Health Research towards the Ripples of Hope awards.

About the Centre for Molecular Medicine and Therapeutics (CMMT)
The Centre for Molecular Medicine and Therapeutics (CMMT) is a synergistic group of scientists and researchers who share a strong sense of commitment to solve the many genetic questions surrounding human illness and well being. Affiliated with the University of British Columbia and the Child & Family Research Institute, CMMT conducts discovery research and translates that research into effective clinical and therapeutic strategies to promote health. For more information, visit http://www.cmmt.ubc.ca/.

About Pfizer in Canada
Pfizer Canada Inc. is the Canadian operation of Pfizer Inc, the world's leading biopharmaceutical company. Pfizer discovers, develops, manufactures and markets prescription medicines for humans and animals. Pfizer Inc invests more than US$7 billion annually in R&D to discover and develop innovative life-saving and life-enhancing medicines in a wide range of therapeutic areas. Our diversified health care portfolio includes human and animal biologic and small molecule medicines and vaccines, as well as nutritional products and many of the world's best-known consumer products. For more information, visit www.pfizer.ca.

SOURCE PFIZER CANADA INC.

For further information:

Lisa Ross
Pfizer Canada
1-866-973-4937

Dawn Ng
Centre for Molecular Medicine and Therapeutics, CFRI, UBC
604-875 3535

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PFIZER CANADA INC.

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