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MUHC, McGill University receive largest-ever CFI research grant

21.08.2008
$100 million in funding for the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre on the Glen Campus will result in groundbreaking medical advances

Heather Munroe-Blum, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of McGill University, and Dr. Arthur T. Porter, Director General and Chief Executive Officer of the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC), welcomed today the announcement by the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) that the Research Institute of the MUHC and McGill University have been awarded $99,988,343 in funding.

This award represents the largest infrastructure investment the CFI has ever made, and will be used to create and equip a new, state-of-the-art medical research centre as part of the MUHC’s new facilities on the Glen Campus.

“McGill has been at the forefront of medical discovery for almost 200 years,” Prof. Munroe-Blum said. “This important award supports our commitment to remain at the forefront of medical discovery for future generations of physicians and scientists. Our scientists at McGill and the MUHC share this commitment and have been rewarded for their efforts and vision. I am proud and delighted. The kinds of transformative scientific discoveries and advancements that will be made in this state-of-the-art facility will have worldwide repercussions in health care for generations to come.”

“Thanks to the CFI, our plan to bring together our investigators on the Glen and Mountain campuses in order to bridge biomedical research and clinical medicine is assured,” noted Dr. Arthur T. Porter. “The award will support building areas of roughly 40,000 GSM (400,000 GSF) for the Research Institute’s Centre for Innovative Medicine, Centre for Translational Biology and Evaluative Research infrastructure on the Glen Campus. The addition of research neighbourhoods, shared platforms and equipment for 180 clinical, evaluative and biomedical researchers will enhance the MUHC’s capacity for meaningful innovation dramatically. I am tremendously proud of the leadership of our Research Institute’s Director, Dr. Vassilios Papadopoulos, and the entire MUHC-McGill team who worked on this landmark application.”

The new Research Institute of the MUHC at the Glen Campus will house some of the most advanced scientific facilities, equipment and technology. It will bring together researchers in both pediatric and adult medicine, promoting discoveries that will yield new treatments and cures for patients of all ages. The CFI grant will be matched by an additional $100 million in funding from the Quebec government and approximately $50 million in funds from donors.

“Our researchers are currently spread out over more than 65 separate labs located in 50- to 100-year-old buildings that impose severe constraints on their activities,” said Dr. Vassilios Papadopoulos, Director of the Research Institute of the MUHC. “Given the world-class achievements of our scientists and clinicians in these poor conditions, one can only dream of the discoveries that will emerge from a modern facility that is designed to encourage the interdisciplinary collaborations and synergies that are the basis for true scientific innovation.”

Denis Thérien, Vice-Principal, Research and International Relations at McGill, echoed Dr. Papadopoulos' enthusiasm. “This historic decision by the CFI underscores the absolute need of partnerships, harnessing the strengths and resources of governments, the private sector, and world-class institutions like McGill and the MUHC,” Thérien said. “Together, truly transformative research requiring this level of investment and collaboration is possible, and we applaud the CFI’s vision in supporting our exciting project.”

“This award represents a strategic boost to the research capacity of McGill University and the MUHC,” said Dr. Eliot Phillipson, President and CEO of the CFI. “This project, selected through a rigorous assessment process, will help ensure that researchers and graduate students at the MUHC have access to a world-class research facility and training environment.”

About the CFI

The CFI is an independent corporation created in 1997 by the Government of Canada to fund research infrastructure. The CFI's mandate is to strengthen the capacity of Canadian universities, colleges, research hospitals, and non-profit research institutions to carry out world-class research and technology development that benefits Canadians. Since its creation, the CFI has committed more than $3.8 billion in support of 5,746 projects at 128 research institutions in 64 municipalities across Canada.

About McGill University
McGill, Canada's leading university, attracts students from 160 countries around the world. Almost half of McGill students claim a first language other than English – including 6,000 francophones – with more than 6,200 international students making up almost 20 per cent of the student body.

About the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre (RI MUHC)

The RI MUHC is a world-renowned biomedical and health-care hospital research centre. Located in Montreal, Quebec, the institute is the research arm of the MUHC, the university health centre affiliated with the Faculty of Medicine at McGill University. The institute supports more than 600 researchers, nearly 1,200 graduate and post-doctoral students and operates more than 300 laboratories devoted to a broad spectrum of fundamental and clinical research. The Research Institute operates at the forefront of knowledge, innovation and technology and is inextricably linked to the clinical programs of the MUHC, ensuring that patients benefit directly from the latest research-based knowledge. The Research Institute of the MUHC is supported in part by the Fonds de la recherche en santé du Québec.

Contact:
Doug Sweet
Director, Media Relations
McGill University
Tel.: 514-398-6752
doug.sweet@mcgill.ca
Rebecca Burns
Communications Co-ordinator
MUHC Public Relations and Communications
Tel.: 514-843-1560
rebecca.burns@muhc.mcgill.ca
Yves Melanson
Co-ordinator, Media Relations
Canada Foundation for Innovation
Tel.: 613-996-3160
Cell.: 613-447-1723
yves.melanson@innovation.ca

Julie Fortier | McGill University
Further information:
http://www.muhc.ca/research

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