New national Regenerative Medicine and Cell Therapy Network

World leader in the field of regenerative medicine and cell therapy, Canada has added a new Network of Centers of Excellence to its already impressive list of accomplishments in this area of medicine. Centralized at Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital in Montreal, CellCAN mobilizes knowledge to propel Canadian stem cell research and clinical development forward.

 

The new network is directed by Dr. Denis Claude Roy, renowned for his cell therapy research. CellCAN is being granted a $ 3 million budget over 4 years including $ 1.6 million from the Networks of Centres of Excellence (NCE) of Canada, $ 400 000 from the Hopital Maisonneuve-Rosemont Foundation –  thanks to a donation from Mr Ronald and Herbert Black, and $ 1 million from various organizations across Canada.

Medical revolution underway

Researchers in Canada discovered stem cells over half a century ago and since then have made major breakthroughs in the field. Today, groundbreaking discoveries make their way to clinical trials bringing researchers even closer to new cellular treatments for patients with cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, ocular diseases, neurological disorders, blood disorders and other health issues.

"In fact, regenerative cell therapies offer almost unlimited possibilities that will transform the very nature of medicine and will have a significant impact on our health systems," stated Dr. Roy.

Knowledge Mobilization

CellCAN was created to bring together the efforts of all stakeholders in stem cell research including: researchers, clinicians, funders, industry, charities, government members, patient representatives and the public.

"Specifically, CellCAN will promote exchanges, cooperation, partnership development and innovation in regenerative medicine and cell therapy," explained Dr. Roy, who also wants to thank the NCE, the Stem Cell Network and the Canadian National Transplant Research Program for their critical support to the project.

Main cell therapy centers in Canada

In addition, CellCAN is a gathering place for the main cell therapy centers in the country. These facilities allow for clinical trials on the forefront of stem cell transplantation, tissue repair and immunotherapy. Under the auspices of CellCAN, they provide the essential bridge between research and clinical as well as commercial applications, helping regenerative medicine and cell therapy to successfully meet expectations.

Here is the list of main organizations (and their director) who are at the heart of CellCAN :

·         Center of Excellence in Cell Therapy (CETC) at Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital in Montréal (Dr. Denis Claude Roy) ;

·         Orsino Cell Therapy Translational Research Laboratory at Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto (Dr. Armand Keating) ;

·         Ottawa Hospital Research Institute (Dr. Duncan Stewart) ;

·         Centre Multidisciplinaire de Développement du Génie Tissulaire (CMDGT) at Université Laval in Québec City (Dr. Lucie Germain) ;

·         Alberta Cell Therapy Manufacturing in Edmonton (Dr. Greg Korbutt) ;

·         Centre of Genomics and Policy at McGill University in Montréal (Dr. Bartha M. Knoppers) ;

·         Michael Smith Laboratories at University of British Columbia (Dr. James Piret).

About CellCAN

CellCAN's mandate is to increase knowledge mobilization and access to the unlimited possibilities offered by stem cell driven medical treatments. Building on the many advances in research as well as new and highly sophisticated cellular therapy infrastructures developed across the country, the network will standardize practices and promote innovative treatments for various diseases such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer.

About the Networks of Centres of Excellence

The Networks of Centres of Excellence (NCE) operates a suite of national funding programs on behalf of the three federal granting agencies—the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC)—in partnership with Industry Canada and Health Canada. NCE programs support large scale, multi-disciplinary collaborations between universities, industry, government and not-for-profit organizations, which focus Canada's research capacity on economic and social challenges, help commercialize and apply research breakthroughs, increase private-sector R&D, and train highly qualified people.

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Information Pascal Mailhot Chief Operating Officer and Director of Public Relations

CellCAN Regenerative Medicine and Cell Therapy Network

(514) 206-9737 pm@ahcom.ca