The Medical Research Council grants $10 million to McGill


Published: 26May1998

A very good academic year for the McGill Faculty of Medicine: 1997 - 1998

On the eve of the 1998 Health Sciences Spring Convocation - to be held tomorrow May 27 at 3:00 p.m. at Place des Arts - Dean Abraham Fuks has every reason to rejoice about the performance of his Faculty’s professors and students. " The Faculty of Medicine and its teaching hospitals did extremely well in this year’s competitions for research and personnel support. The Medical Research Council (MRC), Canada’s major agency for the funding of health research, granted $10 million to McGill and its affiliated hospitals, for projects that include work on women’s health issues, brain disorders and drug resistance" says Dean Fuks, "Furthermore, we garnered half of the MRC senior scientists awards, a full 25% of all the MRC studentships handed out across the country have been granted to McGill students and our professors reaped a large number of the MRC scholars and Fonds de la recherche en santé du Québec (FRSQ) chercheurs boursiers grants."

Overall, the McGill Faculty of Medicine increased its research funding by over 10 per cent this year, to a total of more than $100 million. Contracts, mostly from industry, brought in more than $13 million. There has been an increase, as well, in funds coming from Canadian corporations and a variety of U.S. sources.

These McGill investigators earned prestigious research awards over the past year or so:

Dr Michael Kramer was named an MRC Distinguished Scientist - one of only six in Canada.

Dr Emil Skamene (Director of the Centre for Host Resistance) and Dr Claudio Cuello (Chair of the Department of Pharmacology & Therapeutics) were elected to the Royal Society of Canada in 1997.

Dr David Kaplan won the first Harold E. Johns Award from the National Cancer Institute of Canada. Dr Kaplan will serve as research head of a new Brain Tumour Research Centre at the Montreal Neurological Institute, the first of its kind in Canada.

Dr David Rosenblatt (Medical Genetics) was elected to the prestigious Académie nationale de médecine of France - only the fourth Canadian to achieve this honour.

Dr Brenda Milner (MNI) was inducted into the Canadian Medical Hall of Fame for her research in cognitive neuroscience.

Dr George Karpati (Chair of Neurology at the MNI) won the Distinguished Scientist Award from the Canadian Society for Clinical Investigation.

Dr Lucien Abenheim (Epidemiology and Biostatistics) was named Scientist of the Year by Radio-Canada. Dr Abenheim is well-known for his research into the side-effects of diet drugs.

Dr Kresimir Krnjevic (Physiology) and Dr Margaret Lock (Social Studies of Medicine) received the Prix du Québec , the highest award given by the province.

Dr Samarthji Lal (Psychiatry) won the Joey and Toby Tanenbaum Distinguished Scientist Award for Schizophrenia Research from the Canadian Psychiatric Research Foundation.

Dr Jerry Pelletier, (Biochemistry and Oncology) was awarded the William E. Rawls Prize for his research into key genes linked to Wilms tumour (a type of childhood kidney cancer).

Dr Serge Gauthier (then director of the McGill Centre for Studies in Aging), Dr Judes Poirier (then Associate director, McGill Centre for Studies in Aging) and Rémi Quirion (director of the Douglas Hospital Research Centre) won the 1997 Galien Canada award for their work on Alzheimer’s Disease.

Enfin, la faculté de médecine de McGill va de l’avant dans l’exploration des applications à l’éducation médicale des nouvelles technologies informatiques. Près d’une vingtaine de projets étudiants explorent déjà, en partie grâce à un généreux don de la Fondation Molson, diverses utilisations possibles du multimédia et de l’Internet en enseignement médical. Deux des projets consistent en la création d’un stéthoscope virtuel et d’un programme de travaux dirigés sur la maladie neuromusculaire.