Montreal Heart Institute Awarded $5 Million Grant from Genome Quebec
News Oct 10, 2007
The Montreal Heart Institute (MHI) has announced that its research project based on a mixed academic/private partnership in pharmacogenomics has been selected for the new PRIVAC competition launched by Genome Quebec.
Pharmacogenomics is a rapidly growing field where genomic information is integrated so as to customize treatment and thereby improve the effectiveness and reduce the toxicity of medications. The importance of these issues is better understood when it’s considered that in Canada, adverse drug reactions alone account for an estimated $10 billion in annual health care costs.
In partnership with VIA Pharmaceuticals of California, and financing from Genome Quebec and MDEIE, the MHI research team led by principal researchers Drs. Jean- Claude Tardif and Michael Phillips will develop the clinical infrastructure required to conduct pharmacogenomic clinical trials in Quebec, Canada and elsewhere in the world.
“The new technologies and approaches developed will have a major impact on our capacity to conduct large-scale clinical trials and will make us that much more competitive internationally,” said Dr. Jean-Claude Tardif, director of the MHI Research Centre and professor of medicine at the Universite de Montreal. Dr. Tardif is in charge of the project.
As genome editing technologies advance toward clinical therapies, they are raising hopes of a completely new way to treat disease. However, challenges need to be addressed before potential treatments can be widely used in patients. To tackle these challenges, the National Institutes of Health has launched the Somatic Cell Genome Editing program, which has awarded multiple grants including more than $3.6 million to assess the safety of genome editing in human cells and tissues.