Alnylam Pharmaceuticals Inc. unveiled positive results from a late-stage clinical trial of the drug patisiran for the treatment of familial amyloidotic polyneuropathy. Patisiran works by interrupting the production of a specific disease-causing protein through a process called RNA interference (RNAi), which eliminates unwanted proteins. Because RNAi can be easily tuned (in theory) to any disease, this may herald a new class of medicines.
The founding principle of Toronto-based Deep Genomics is “that the future of medicine will rely on artificial intelligence (AI), because biology is too complex for humans to understand.” After success at the startup assistance program run by University of Toronto’s Creative Destruction Lab, Deep Genomics has now closed a Series A financing deal that will allow it apply AI to search across 69 billion molecules to identify 1000 potential drugs.
On September 25th, 2017, Ontario Genomics, in partnership with the Synthesis Agri-Food Network and supported by Genome Canada and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council, held a workshop to discuss “The Genomics Strategy for the Ontario Agriculture and Agri-Food Sector”. Over 80 leaders from across Ontario’s diverse and strong agriculture and agri-food sector attended…
The past week saw the appointments of leaders in key positions across Canada’s and Ontario’s research and innovation ecosystem, including Canada’s Chief Science Advisor, CEO of MaRS Discovery District, and CEO of the newly created Vector Institute for Artificial Intelligence. Dr. Bettina Hamelin, President and CEO of Ontario Genomics, would like to congratulate Dr. Mona…
J. Craig Venter and Human Longevity published a paper making the bold claim that it can identify individuals using their genomes to predict what their faces looks like. But criticism over social media and BioRxiv has called this into question, or at least stated this technology needs more development before being robust enough to predict faces from genomes.
Understanding a cancer’s genetics is key to selecting targeted therapies that are likely to be of the most benefit to a patient. The Ontario Institute for Cancer Research (OICR) announced the “OCTANE” study that will use next-generation genome sequencing to select the best treatment option for participants.
Doctors at Sick Kids have developed tests to analyze the molecular makeup of individual brain tumours, leading to the possibility of personalized treatment. Hospitals from around the world are sending their patient’s tumour samples to Sick Kids for this molecular analysis.
Proteorex, a spinout from the Toronto-based Structural Genomics Consortium, aims to solve the problem of failures in drug discovery with their power-packed mix of machine learning, patient-derived cell-based screening, and Artificial Intelligence. They recently completed four months at the venture-backed accelerator, IndieBio, and are looking to close a seed series round of financing.
Most nitrogen fertilizer is made by big chemical producers and is sprayed onto crops. Some 3% of the world’s carbon emissions result from its production. With $100M in investment, the Bayer/Ginkgo team wants to turn crops into their own mini-fertilizer manufacturers. The work combines the synthetic biology leadership of Ginkgo Bioworks with Bayer’s deep knowledge and experience in agriculture.
Sun Life Financial will be offering plan members on short- and long-term disability leave for depression or anxiety the chance to take part in a study on the impact of pharmacogenetic testing. The insurer is participating in a study that examines the effectiveness of the technology in partnership with the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health and personalized medicine provider Assurex Health Inc.