As the Canadian government supports a universal healthcare system, it’s only natural to see federal legislators support the true innovators within the field.
That idea to help fund the intersection of tech and medicine seems to be happening more and more lately, and the latest iteration is $79.8 million worth of grants that will be delivered to five hubs around the country through the Centres of Excellence for Commercialization and Research (CECR) program. Two of the hubs are in Montreal, one in Hamilton, one in St. John’s, and one in Toronto. The new grants will be used to support solution-oriented clusters of scientists, entrepreneurs and innovators with the goal to support job creation and improve the health Canadians across the country.
“Today we are investing in science for healthier communities,” said Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science and Sport. “The five research centres awarded today mobilize Canada’s best research, development and entrepreneurial talent to transform new discoveries into concrete products, services and processes to improve our lives. By matching clusters of research expertise with business leaders, these centres will help unleash the potential of Canadian innovation.”
This is how the grants will be broken down:
- The Centre for Probe Development and Commercialization (CPDC) in Hamilton will receive $10.4 million over four years. The CPDC works to research and improves the infrastructure around the development and manufacturing of radiopharmaceuticals, a type of drug that can help doctors diagnose diseases at an earlier stage.
- The Institute for Research in Immunology and Cancer – Commercialization of Research (IRICoR) in Montreal will receive $25 million over five years. The IRICoR is a non-profit drug discovery research centre that helps take cutting-edge advances and turn them into commercial realities.
- The Quebec Consortium for Industrial Research and Innovation in Medical Technology (MEDTEQ), also in Montreal, will receive $19.5 million over five years. MEDTEQ’s goal is to accelerate the development of tech solutions that can help patients. Examples of their completed projects include telemedicine platforms for air-evacuations and cancer detections using AI technologies.
- The Centre for Commercialization of Regenerative Medicine (CCRM) in Toronto will receive $15 million over five years. CCRM works with partners like the MaRS Discovery District, Aspect Biosystems, and other research and industry partners to help develop regenerative medicine and cell technologies.
- Leading Operational Observations and Knowledge for the North (LOOKNorth) in St. John’s will receive $9.9 million over five years. LOOKNorth brings together Canada’s sensor innovators and helps them bridge the gap to commercial markets through new tech and expertise.
“Along with funding from our longstanding partners at the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research, the support and unique vision of McMaster University, and partnerships with leading academic and industry organizations, the CPDC has been able to foster Canadian innovation and commercialization,” said Dr. John Valliant, founder of the CPDC.
“This includes creating new companies, attracting foreign investments and delivering lifesaving diagnostic and therapeutic radiopharmaceuticals to patients locally, nationally and internationally. Our team will use the new funding to support the commercialization of new Canadian technologies and position Canada at the forefront of the rapidly growing therapeutic medical isotope and radiopharmaceutical sector.”