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New genomic application projects to spur innovation across many Canadian sectors


July 11, 2016, Victoria, BC – Parliamentary Secretary for Science, Terry Beech, today announced the recipients of Round 5 funding under Genome Canada’s Genomic Applications Partnership Program (GAPP). Five projects are receiving a total of $5.3 million in federal funding through Genome Canada, with an additional $11.6 million invested through partners including provinces, private and public sector organizations.  

  • Dr. Casey Hubert, from the University of Calgary, is working with the Nova Scotia Department of Energy to de-risk offshore oil and gas exploration in the province using innovative genomic approaches.

  • Dr. Christoph Borchers from the University of Victoria and Dr. Gerald Batist from McGill University, are working with the pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca to validate new technology that will help healthcare professionals match the right cancer treatment to the right patient.

  • Dr. Charles Goulet from Université Laval, is working with Vineland Research and Innovation Centre to use variation in aroma-related genes to develop more flavourful tomatoes.

  • Dr. Elizabeth Edwards from the University of Toronto, is working with SiREM to use specific microbes to accelerate the rate of biodegradation and enable less expensive cleanup of contaminated industrial sites.

  • Dr. Xiao-Yan Wen from St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto, is working with Edge Therapeutics Inc. the develop the best drugs for preventing intracerebral hemorrhage – a form of brain hemorrhage responsible for 10 per cent of all strokes.

GAPP partners academic researchers with users in the private and public sectors to promote genomics-derived solutions to address challenges or opportunities facing users. The projects are expected to have considerable economic and social impacts in the near term, spurring innovation, commercialization and growth in Canada.

Further, through a Genome Canada and Mitacs partnership, GAPP supports training the next generation of graduate students and post-doctoral fellows. Several of the projects announced today involve research internships, which will prepare Canada’s next entrepreneurs through hands-on experience.


“The Government of Canada is pleased to support these new teams that are putting leading-edge genomics research to use in society to benefit health, the environment and our economy. These projects open up new avenues for made-in-Canada innovation, leading to stronger markets for our industries, job creation and new opportunities for Canadians.

– Terry Beech, Parliamentary Secretary for Science

“Genomics is a powerful enabling technology that cuts-across many sectors that are of critical importance to Canada as these projects illustrate. Congratulations to the new teams, whose work has the potential to transform industries and create social and economic benefits for Canadians.”

– Mr. Marc LePage, President and CEO, Genome Canada

“Today’s announcement reflects the shared commitment Mitacs and Genome Canada have in supporting Canada’s next generation of innovators whose research in genomics will have significant, multi-sector, impacts on our country’s well-being.”

Dr. Alejandro Adem, Chief Executive Officer and Scientific Director, Mitacs




Related Products

GAPP Round 5 Projects Backgrounder

Associated Links

Genomic Applications Partnership Program


Media Relations
Innovation, Science and
Economic Development Canada

Andrea Matyas
Director, Communications
Genome Canada

Heather Young
Director, Communications 

Twitter: @ScienceMin; @GenomeCanada; @MitacsCanada  

About Genome Canada (

Genome Canada is a not-for-profit organization that acts as a catalyst for developing and applying genomics and genomic-based technologies, to create economic and social benefits for Canadians. Genome Canada connects ideas and people across public and private sectors to find new uses for genomics, invests in large-scale science and technology to fuel innovation, and translates discoveries into applications and solutions across key sectors of national importance, including health, agriculture, forestry, fisheries & aquaculture, energy, mining, and the environment.

About Mitacs (

Mitacs is a national, not-for-profit organization that has designed and delivered research and training programs in Canada for 16 years. Working with 60 universities, thousands of companies, and both federal and provincial governments, we build partnerships that support industrial and social innovation in Canada.

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