Ever since the pioneering work of McCulloch and Till in the early 1960s, Ontario has been a powerhouse in stem cell science and regenerative medicine. We have one of the highest concentrations of eminent scientists in the world, strong partnerships with industry and major collaborative initiatives such as the McEwen Centre for Regenerative Medicine, the Ontario Human iPS Cell Facility and the Ontario Initiative in Personalized Stem Cell Medicine.
Thanks to the intense efforts of Ontario stem cell scientists, MaRS Innovation and the University of Toronto, another major development milestone has been achieved.
In December last year, the Federal Government announced $15 million in support to establish the Centre for Commercialization of Regenerative Medicine (CCRM) under the Centres of Excellence for Commercialization and Research (CECR) program.
The CECR backgrounder stated:
The vision of the Centre for Commercialization of Regenerative Medicine (CCRM) is to accelerate the commercialization of regenerative medicine (RM) technologies by bringing together business leadership and innovative stem cell and biomaterial technology development. CCRM will leverage partnerships and substantial resources from the private sector, scientific expertise, intellectual property and major public investment, which together will position Canada as the best place worldwide to invest in RM. The new, sustainable Canadian-based RM pipeline will be capable of attracting long-term partner investment as well as supporting and creating RM-based companies. Their high-value products and next-generation drugs will treat the many devastating diseases that affect our aging population and will change the paradigm of health care in Canada.
Dr. Peter Zandstra of the University of Toronto and a Canada Research Chair in Stem Cell Bioengineering has led the efforts for put this exciting initiative together.
Join Dr. Zandstra here at MaRS when he speaks about the CCRM at the MaRS Future of Medicine™ Series talk on February 24 (details and registration here). Make sure you sign up and be one of the first to learn of the vision, activities and structure of CCRM and open source innovation in regenerative medicine.