Government of Canada

Government of Canada

December 17, 2010 11:18 ET

Creating a Commercialization Pipeline for New Medical Technologies: Centre for Commercialization of Regenerative Medicine (CCRM), Toronto, Ontario

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Dec. 17, 2010) - The Centre for Commercialization of Regenerative Medicine (CCRM) is one of five new centres to be funded by the Government of Canada through the 2010 Centres of Excellence for the Commercialization of Research (CECR) competition. The CECR program is administered by the Networks of Centres of Excellence (NCE) Secretariat, which supports successful research partnerships between universities, industry, not-for-profit organizations and government.

The centre was awarded $15 million over five years, allowing its members to address the barriers faced by the Canadian regenerative medicine (RM) industry, such as the licensing of early-stage RM technologies to companies outside of Canada before their market value is realized.

Hosted by the University of Toronto, CCRM brings together leading RM experts from the University of Toronto and McMaster University, with researchers from the Hospital for Sick Children, the University Heath Network, the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute and Mount Sinai Hospital, to accelerate RM research and development, and create a commercialization pipeline that rapidly brings RM technologies to market. These researchers are working to harness the power of stem cells, biomaterials and molecules through innovative technologies to treat, and perhaps cure, diseased cells, tissues and organs.

Dr. Peter Zandstra, from the Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering at the University of Toronto, is the Scientific Director of CCRM.

"CCRM will incubate early stage RM technologies and develop them into products," says Zandstra. "This way they will have much more value when they get licensed or are incorporated into Canadian companies. Our goal is to build a cluster of Ontario- and Canadian-based RM companies to capture the excellent RM science and innovation taking place in our partner institutions."

CCRM will leverage partnerships and substantial resources from the private sector, attract major public investment and scientific expertise, and generate significant intellectual property. This will position Canada as the best place in the world to invest in RM. The high-value products and next-generation drugs will treat many of the devastating diseases that affect our aging population, and will change the paradigm of health care in Canada.

The CECR program is an initiative of three federal granting agencies—the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), the Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR), and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC)—in partnership with Industry Canada.

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