COVID-19 Resources

Ontario Genomics is working proactively with the research community, partner genome centres, and governments to support COVID-19 research efforts. We are committed to keeping you informed about COVID-19 resources, funding opportunities, and reliable news. This page is updated regularly, do visit to stay up-to-date about related information.

News Spotlight

COVID-19 Research Spotlight: Untreated sewage samples could uncover the arrival of a second COVID-19 wave
Researchers with Ontario Tech University’s Faculty of Science are working with Durham Region Health DepartmentDurham Region Works Department and other key partners to detect an anticipated second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic by testing dozens of untreated sewage samples weekly from multiple water pollution control plants in Durham Region.

Read: Ontario’s COVID-19 Genomics Rapid Response Coalition (ONCoV)
In response to the global pandemic, Ontario Genomics has acted quickly to rapidly mobilize Ontario’s existing genomics capacity and data expertise through a coordinated, province-wide approach. There are numerous experts and researchers in Ontario who are working on the front lines towards a diagnostic or therapeutic response to the pandemic, but they have been operating largely in silos.

COVID-19 Research Spotlight: Nicoya receives over $290K in funding to develop a portable COVID-19 diagnostic test
Widespread COVID-19 testing is vital to safely easing physical distancing and re-opening society. We’re proud to announce that Nicoya is one of four Canadian companies selected to receive over $290K in funding to develop a portable COVID-19 diagnostic test.

COVID-19 Resource: COVID-19 Genotyping Tool
The COVID-19 Genotyping Tool (CGT) is a visualization toolbox for SARS-CoV-2 whole genome sequencing data. Developed at Dr. Bo Wang’s lab at UHN, this tool is open source to help scientists in drug and vaccine development.

Watch: How can we use synthetic biology to prepare for future pandemics?
Why were countries underprepared for the COVID-19 pandemic? What can we do differently to be better equipped for future pandemics? In this webinar, Dr. Bettina Hamelin and a panel of global experts will shed light on Synthetic Biology approaches that could help with subsequent outbreaks.

Listen: Understanding a Disease – COVID-19 and Genomics Canada Podcast
COVID-19 is a virus that impacts different individuals in similar ways. In this podcast, Dr. Bettina Hamelin, President & CEO of Ontario Genomics and Dr. Rob Annan, President & CEO of Genome Canada explore the scientific aspects of COVID-19 dynamics and how it affects individuals.

Read: It’s all in the genome: Preparing for the next waves of COVID-19
Ontario’s infectious disease expert, Dr. Samira Mubareka discusses the CanCOGeN initiative shedding light on her COVID-19 research and why it’s important to be prepared for the next wave of this pandemic.

Listen: Better Treatment Strategies to Manage the Pandemic featuring Dev Sidhu
In this podcast, Dr. Dev Sidhu, professor of Molecular Genetics at the University of Toronto, talks about his research and alternative methods for tackling COVID-19. He believes that developing antiviral compounds and preventing COVID-19 from escalating in patients can be done more quickly than the development of a vaccine, emphasizing on how therapeutic strategies can keep the virus in check.

Engage: Policy Horizons – Synbio Canada Webinar Series
This webinar series will run throughout spring and summer 2020. Discuss Biodigital Convergence and learn about how these technologies are reshaping Canadian economy and society.

Watch: COVID-19 Research: Vaccines, Genomics & Open Science featuring Aled Edwards
In this 18-minute interview, Dr. Aled Edwards, founder of The Structural Genomics Consortium, speaks about open science and its importance in genomics and vaccine development. “Scientists, particularly at universities, do not know any national borders,” he said advocating for open science.

COVID-19 Research Spotlight: Complimentary SPR Support Now Available to All Researchers during COVID-19
“Nicoya has a long history of standing behind scientists,” said Ryan Denomme, CEO of Ontario based biotechnology company Nicoya which is offering Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR) technical support to researchers at no cost during COVID19!

Watch: COVID-19 Research: Genomics, Rapid Execution & Funding featuring Samira Mubareka
Ontario’s infectious disease expert speaks about her COVID-19 research in an interview with TheFuturEconomy.ca. Leading Sunnybrook’s Coronavirus response, her work on isolating & understanding the virus is helping roll out rapid research efforts.

Read: Genome Canada leads $40 million genomics initiative to address COVID-19 pandemic
Important new pan-Canadian Genomics partnership with $40M investment – CanCOGeN, a multi-pronged national approach to harnessing robust genomic solutions to meet the COVID-19 challenge head-on.

COVID-19 Research Spotlight: U of T to support 31 high-impact research projects through its Toronto COVID-19 Action Fund
These high-impact Coronavirus research projects funded through Toronto COVID-19 Action Fund, resonate with Ontario’s Premier’s belief, “We have some of the best & brightest minds right here in Ontario leading the charge in the fight against COVID19.”

COVID-19 Research Spotlight: Ontario Genomics + SynBio Landing Pad Program
Velocity recently partnered with the Ontario Genomics Synbio Landing Pad program to provide genomics and engineering biology companies in Ontario with lab space, mentorship, and $50K funding for qualified companies.

Read: Ready to fight: Long-term investments in research mean Canada is equipped to respond to the pandemic
Genome Canada’s President and CEO, Rob Annan discusses the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on Canada and how we can be better equipped to respond to it.

Watch: CanCOVID Speaker Series – The COVID-19 Québec Biobank featuring Vincent Mooser
In the first episode of this speaker series, Dr. Vincent Mooser discusses the COVID-19 Québec Biobank, its mandate and current landscape.

COVID-19 Research Spotlight: Developing a more productive and sustainable hazelnut cultivar
In collaboration with the University of Guelph, one of our ON-RP3 projects won a project feature in Agricultural Adaptation Council’s successful projects spotlight. This project uses genomics to source high quality, cold-tolerant hazelnuts for Ferrero Rocher Canada.

COVID-19 Research Spotlight: Canadian bioscience firm says it’s approved for production of rapid COVID-19 testing device
Ontario-made rapid COVID-19 genomics technology from Spartan Bio received approval for frontline use. This quick and portable innovation significantly expands Canada’s testing capacity.