Canadian nano, regenerative medicine research gets funded

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Seven new research projects on regenerative medicine and nanomedicine received $16 million in funding. The studies were co-funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the Canadian Space Agency (CSA).

"The Government of Canada is proud to support regenerative medicine and nanomedicine projects that will translate into improved health for Canadians," said Colin Carrie, PhD, Member of Parliament for Oshawa.

According to the researchers, studies on nanomedicine and regenerative medicine are designed to prevent disease and improve human health. Nanomedicine delivers medical technologies that detect or function at the molecular level to diagnose and treat disease, while regenerative medicine stimulates the renewal of bodily tissues and organs or restores function through natural and bioengineered means. Various innovations in these areas have helped combat vascular diseases, cancer, diabetes, multiple sclerosis and other chronic diseases.

This funding will enable researchers to potentially:

  • Identify microlesions in multiple sclerosis, using a new tool for quantifying the cause of the disease and how well a treatment is working at Universite Laval in Montreal;
  • Create personalized nanomedicines that silence cancer-causing genes at the University of British Columbia;
  • Develop microchip-based devices to analyze prostate cancer markers in blood at the University of Toronto;
  • Generate transplantable, insulin-producing cells from stem cells for diabetes at the University of British Columbia;
  • Develop innovative sensorimotor rehabilitation approaches for patients with spinal cord injuries or stroke at the Université de Montréal;
  • Study how novel therapeutic interventions can regenerate blood vessels at the University of Toronto;  and
  • Develop nanotechnology-enabled image-guided methods of diagnosing and treating lung cancer and vascular diseases at University Health Network.