$28.7M shot in the health research arm

$28.7M shot in the health research arm McGill University

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McGill Reporter
May 17, 2007 - Volume 39 Number 17
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Home > McGill Reporter > Volume 39: 2006-2007 > May 17, 2007 > $28.7M shot in the health research arm

$28.7M shot in the health research arm

McGill researchers seeking solutions to a wide range of health-related issues will benefit from a recent $28.7-million boost from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR).

McGill will receive exactly $28,665,919 as its share of a total $79.5 million investment in Quebec health research recently announced by CIHR and federal Health Minister Tony Clement. McGill's portion will fund 74 research projects.

Among those projects will be Dr. Orest Blaschuk's development of new methods to deliver therapeutic proteins such as insulin, substituting inhalation for injection; a study on the role of microbes in C-difficile-related disease by Dr. Amee Manges; Dr. Jun-Li Liu's research to identify the proteins that contribute to the growth and regeneration of islet cells, a factor in juvenile diabetes; and Dr. Hope Weiler's study on the vitamin D needs of babies to inform federal health policy recommendations.

"Our research is at a crossroads, in that we have obtained a plethora of in vitro data and now require funds to conduct sophisticated research to demonstrate proof of principle," said Dr. Blaschuk, a researcher in the Division of Urology at McGill's Royal Victoria Hospital. "Funds from the CIHR will allow us to conduct these studies to obtain the data needed to push our work into clinical studies."

"CIHR funds are critical to maximizing McGill's investment in the best health science researchers in the world; for example, those coming through the Canada Research Chairs program," said Dr. Denis Thérien, Vice-Principal, Research and International Relations.

In a summary of the state of research at McGill during the May 9 McGill Senate meeting, Dr. Thérien noted that grants from the three federal granting agencies—the CIHR, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC)—represent about 35 percent of sponsored research funding at McGill.

Competition for those grants is fierce among Canada's top-ranked universities, which forces McGill to "keep thinking and keep being creative" to earn its share of federal research funding.

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