Merck Canada Invests $5 Million in Quebec Consortium for Drug Discovery to Support Biopharmaceutical Research

MONTREAL, Jan. 26 /CNW Telbec/ - Merck Canada has renewed its partnership with the Quebec Consortium for Drug Discovery (CQDM) by investing a further $5 million over five years in the organization so it can continue its support of biopharmaceutical research in Quebec.

Merck is a founding member of CQDM, a not-for-profit organization whose mission is to identify, finance and support collaborative research projects focusing on key enabling technologies for drug discovery and development. It promotes synergies between academia and the biopharmaceutical industry by creating a network of exchange and cooperation for research conducted at universities, hospitals and at biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies.

"This new investment by Merck is a vital contribution that will allow CQDM to continue its mission of supporting the world-class biopharmaceutical research work that is conducted in Quebec," said Max Fehlmann, President and Director-General of the CQDM. "It will help us promote the development of technologies that will lead to important new discoveries to benefit patients."

The investment by Merck is part of its 2010 pledge to invest $100 million over five years in biopharmaceutical research and development programs with Quebec companies and academic and research institutions.

"Merck is pleased to renew its important collaboration with CQDM by making this significant investment," said Carlos Dourado, President of Merck Canada. "The CQDM performs a vital role of ensuring constructive collaboration among Quebec biopharmaceutical researchers so that all involved can get maximum returns from their R&D investments. This is a key success factor in promoting Quebec as a major North American biopharmaceutical research hub."

About the Quebec Consortium for Drug Discovery (CQDM)

The CQDM is a non-profit organization whose mission is to identify, fund and support research projects carried out in partnership between the academic and hospital milieus in the public sector and the biotechnology and contract research organization (CRO) in the private sector. Research projects funded by CQDM aim at developing tools or enabling technologies that facilitate and accelerate the drug discovery process.

About Merck

Today's Merck is working to help the world be well. Merck is a global health care leader with a diversified portfolio of prescription medicines, vaccines, consumer and animal health products. In Canada, Merck markets over 530 pharmaceutical, consumer and animal health products and is a leader in a broad range of areas such as cardiology, immunology, infectious diseases, respiratory, vaccines, women's health and sun care, and is focused on expanding offerings in other areas, including virology, oncology and diabetes.

Merck is one of the top 25 R&D investors in Canada, with an investment of $95.4 million in 2009. Merck also has a large manufacturing facility in Quebec dedicated to the annual production of some 35 million units including the Claritin and Aerius brands. Based in Montréal, Quebec, Merck employs over 1600 people across Canada. For more information about our operations in Canada, visit

Forward-Looking Statement

This information includes "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the safe harbor provisions of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.  Such statements may include, but are not limited to, statements about the benefits of the proposed merger between Merck and Schering-Plough, including future financial and operating results, the combined company's plans, objectives, expectations and intentions and other statements that are not historical facts. Such statements are based upon the current beliefs and expectations of Merck's and Schering-Plough's management and are subject to significant risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ from those set forth in the forward-looking statements.

The following factors, among others, could cause actual results to differ from those set forth in the forward-looking statements: the possibility that the expected synergies from the merger of Merck and Schering-Plough will not be realized, or will not be realized within the expected time period, due to, among other things, the impact of pharmaceutical industry regulation and pending legislation that could affect the pharmaceutical industry; the risk that the businesses will not be integrated successfully; disruption from the merger making it more difficult to maintain business and operational relationships; Merck's ability to accurately predict future market conditions; dependence on the effectiveness of Merck's patents and other protections for innovative products; the risk of new and changing regulation and health policies in the U.S. and internationally and the exposure to litigation and/or regulatory actions. 

Merck undertakes no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.  Additional factors that could cause results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements can be found in Merck's 2008 Annual Report on Form 10-K, Schering-Plough's Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarterly period ended Sept. 30, 2009, the proxy statement filed by Merck on June 25, 2009 and each company's other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) available at the SEC's Internet site (


For further information:

Marc Osborne  
(514) 428-3275       
Jade Lavallée-Labossière/Géraldine Eckert
HKDP Communications and public affairs
(514) 395-0375, ext 224 and 234

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