Genome Canada: Major investment in genomics research will improve the health and wellbeing of Canadians

March 2, 2020

Nearly $15 million in federal funding to support genomics research in health, agriculture and environment

March 2, 2020 – Montreal, Quebec – Canada is a world leader in genomics research, producing dramatic breakthroughs in science, and transforming our understanding of the world around us. The results of this research are being used to tackle important challenges and develop innovative solutions, not just in human health, but across diverse sectors of the economy.

Today, on behalf of Minister Navdeep Bains, William Amos, Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry (Science), announced $14.7 million to support 11 genomics research projects awarded through Genome Canada. In addition, provincial governments, businesses and research partners are investing $29.7 million for a total of $44.4 million in support of these projects in the areas of health, agriculture and the environment.

This investment will support researchers at McGill University including Dr. Lucy Gilbert, who is working on DOvEEgene a new genomics tool for early detection of ovarian and endometrial cancers. Dr. Gilbert has partnered with Dr. Guy Rouleau and his team at the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) on a genomic uterine pap test to screen for these cancers while they are at the early stages and still curable. This could save thousands of women’s lives and reduce healthcare costs by up to $250 million from the more than $1 billion that is currently spent each year on treatment for the 10,000 Canadian women who are diagnosed with these cancers.

Genomics research collaborations have real, positive impacts on the health and well-being of Canadians.

These networks of partnerships between the research sector and post-secondary institutions support the responsible uptake of new technology, and targeted investments in initiatives with economic and many other benefits to Canada.