Over $53M in new funding for cancer research in Quebec

Debbie Lawes
June 11, 2019

The Quebec government, foundations and industry partners announced millions of dollars in new funding for cancer research in June in the hopes of bringing personalized medicine to patients faster.

The Canadian Cancer Society, the CQDM research consortium and industry partners are investing nearly $10 million to support three breast cancer projects over the next three years: using a 3D printer to reproduce a tumour from the cells of breast cancer patients (Dr. Morag Park, McGill University); repairing DNA in order to develop new drugs for hard-to-treat breast cancers (Dr. Alain Nepveu, McGill); and advancing artificial intelligence to predict if chemotherapy is necessary for triple negative breast cancer patients (Dr. Mark Basik, Jewish General Hospital).

Those same three research projects, along with two others, will also be supported by $15.5 million in funding from CQDM and Quebec’s ministry of economy and innovation (MEI). One of those additional projects is specific to cancer—using immunotherapy to develop a new treatment for bladder cancer, led by Dr. Yves Fradet at Laval University.

On June 4, the MEI awarded $10 million to the Québec Cancer Consortium for Novel Therapeutics and Biomarkers (QCC), topping up $17.9 million from 12 partners, to double patient recruitment into oncology clinical trials and develop infrastructure to support the development of personalized medicine and immunotherapies in Quebec.

The four-year project builds on the Montreal Cancer Consortium initiative launched last year by the Terry Fox Research Institute to develop infrastructure platforms linking Quebec hospitals and research centres to the pan-Canadian Marathon of Hope Cancer Centres Network. (see related article).

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