The Short Report - May 15, 2019: Early career awards, cannabis R&D, AI

Debbie Lawes
May 15, 2019

Minister of Science and Sport Kirsty Duncan has announced the first 157 early career researchers to share $38 million under the recently launched New Frontiers in Research Fund. Each recipient will receive up to $250,000 over the next two years to support international, interdisciplinary, fast-breaking and high-risk research. - Newswire

Vancouver-based Centre for Drug Research and Development has brokered a collaborative agreement with TRIUMF and its commercialization arm – TRIUMF Innovations – to develop novel radiopharmaceuticals for personalized cancer treatments. Watch for the full article next week. - CDRD

Quebec’s largest pharmaceutical employer, Pharmascience Inc., is launching Royalmount Laboratories – a new Montreal division specializing in contract research services for local and international companies, with a focus on cannabis testing for third parties. - Newswire

Cannabis Growth Opportunity Corp. is turning Vaudreuil-Dorion’s former Hoffmann-La Roche Complex into an incubation centre for startups. The massive 180,000 sq. ft. C3 Cannabis Innovation Centre – which is affiliated with McGill University’s Center for Cannabis Research – will provide cannabis growers, producers, processors and researchers with access to R&D, early production and capital, while reducing commercialization costs and accelerating time to market. - Newswire

Vancouver-based AbCellera Biologics Inc. has brought aboard the Vaccine Research Centre (Bethesda, MD) and Ichor Medical Systems (San Diego, CA) to participate in a USD$30-million U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency project to develop field-ready countermeasures against viral outbreaks within 60 days. - AbCellera

After three years of R&D, Resolve Digital Health is seeking a medical device licence from Health Canada for two more of its “smart” cannabis vaporizers. The Toronto company is seeking similar regulatory approvals in the European Union, Australia, Israel and Central and South America. - Resolve

Alberta’s cannabis sector has united to create the Alberta Cannabis Council, representing cannabis producers, retailers, clinics and industry affiliates, including public agencies, the scientific research community, industry affiliates and post-secondary institutions. The not-for-profit’s inaugural executive director is Michelle Russell, formerly head of business development at cannabis consulting company 420 Advisory Management. - Newswire

New Brunswick Power has received $1-million from Natural Resources Canada's Energy Innovation Program to launch a one-year research and demonstration project testing the feasibility of conservation voltage reduction in helping consumers conserve more energy and increase renewable energy use. - Newswire

A team of lawyers and scientists at Element AI Inc. in Montreal have developed an “easy-to-use” online Data Licensing Tool to foster transparency and clarity in the use of datasets for machine learning applications. The global artificial intelligence research and legal communities are also invited to improve and adopt Element AI’s recently released Montreal Data License paper – a proposed framework designed to bring legal clarity to individuals and companies that make data available to third parties for use-cases in the field of artificial intelligence. - Newswire

Google is providing a $500,000 grant to the Actua youth outreach network to develop AI curriculum for Canadian high-school students as part of its new Codemakers program. - Newswire

CIFAR is providing $300,000 in funding and in-kind support to expand the CIFAR-OSMO AI for Good Summer Lab, which will provide up to 30 undergraduate women from across Canada with training and networking opportunities in artificial intelligence. - CIFAR

The Centre for Aging + Brain Health Innovation has launched its $2.5-million Spark program which will provide front-line care workers with up to $50,000 to translate grassroots ideas into early stage innovations in the field of aging and brain health. – Newswire

The federal government has unveiled a new pilot program, Dimensions: Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Canada, a charter and $5.3 million in grants to help universities and colleges address systemic barriers, particularly those experienced by members of underrepresented or disadvantaged groups. The letter of intent deadline for the pilot is June 3. - GoC

The governments of Quebec and Canada have awarded $1.3 million to the Pôle d'excellence de l'industrie des systèmes électroniques du Québec (ISEQ) – a centre of excellence that supports the development of the province’s electronics systems industry. The funding will allow ISEQ to create a regional office that supports electronic system companies in the Mauricie region. - GoC

Nicoya, a Kitchener ON-based nanotech company, is receiving $2.57 million from FedDev Ontario to develop and market a new version of its world-first desktop surface plasmon resonance instrument (SPR), marketed as a more accurate, portable, and cost-effective method for collecting data for R&D. - GoC

Nancy White has been appointed CEO of Inagene Diagnostics Inc., a Toronto startup that has launched its first product – a genetic test for pain treatments and dependency risk. The company’s former CEO, life sciences executive Peter Brenders, becomes strategic advisor to the chair. - Inagene

Montreal-based IRICoR (Institute for Research in Immunology and Cancer – Commercialization of Research) has added three new directors to its board: Annie Gauthier, partner at the law firm BCF; Bettina Hamelin, president and CEO of Ontario Genomics; and Bernard Lachapelle, president of The JBL Group Inc. - IRICoR

Nanomedicine pioneer Mauro Ferrari takes over January 1 as the new president of the European Research Council, after early 40 years working as a researcher in the U.S. Ferrari will be responsible for overseeing the rollout of Horizon Europe, described as “the most ambitious EU research and innovation programme ever”. - European Commission

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