Genomics Blog

April 8, 2016 9:58 AM
LISTEN: Alberta's best and brightest are slipping out the door
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The road ahead for Alberta's economy is a bumpy one and could become even tougher to navigate if too many entrepreneurs, researchers, and innovators leave the province and take their ideas and talent with them. We need to pick up the pace of innovation to diversify the economy and responds to shifts in the global economy. With our small population base we also have to choose our economic targets carefully and try to capitalize in areas where we already have an advantage says Leo de Bever. He is an economist, entrepreneur, and past CEO of the Alberta Investment Management Corp. He's also concerned that too much Alberta talent is heading for the exits.
April 29, 2016 10:39 AM
BioTalent Canada Announces Winner of the 2016 ‘Catalyst’ Award for New Biotechnology Graduates
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OTTAWA, April 26, 2016 - Mathieu-Marc Poulin of Delivra in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island was announced today as the winner of the 2016 Catalyst Award. Mr. Poulin will be awarded a cash prize of $1,000.

Mr.  Poulin’s employer, Delivra, is a biotechnology company developer of transdermal technologies that introduce pharmaceutical and natural molecules into the body through the skin, rather than via pills. As part of a multi-disciplinary research team, Poulin’s input as Research and Development Technician helped Delivra secure funding from Canada’s National Research Council’s Industrial Research Assistance Program. His research was also instrumental in Delivra’s development of new transdermal products.
April 25, 2016 6:07 PM
My Experience at the 2016 Calgary Youth Science Fair - Lilian Zhang
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At the recent Calgary Youth Science Fair, I spent some time wandering through the student displays and talking to the participants. I was very impressed with the increased number of high school students presenting this year. I challenged several students to send me their thoughts about science fairs. I gave them a broad brush to tell me about mentors, topics, what skills they have developed and where they think they will go next.

Lilian Zhang, grade 10 student at Sir Winston Churchill High School in Calgary, took me up on the challenge. Here is her guest blog. I know you will be as impressed with her positive outlook as I was.

                              My Experience at the 2016 Calgary Youth Science Fair

Calgary Youth Science Fair was always a passageway for my passions in the world of science. This year, I was able to attend again, and as usual, I learned many things from my experience of doing the project. My mentors, teachers, friends, and especially my parents, encouraged me, and taught and helped me so much throughout the process. However, most importantly, I was able to gain the most knowledge from my peers at the Science Fair. From hearing about the chemical structure of ascorbic acid in fruits, to microbial fuel cells, to the role of proteins in the cure for various diseases, I was constantly impressed by the level of ingenuity every student was able to show.

April 22, 2016 10:27 AM
Farm Groups Call on Ag Minister to Stop Genetically Modified Alfalfa Seed Release
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Media Release, Longueuil, Ottawa, Saskatoon. April 20, 2016  -
Canadian farm organizations representing a diversity of farmers and production systems are asking the federal Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Lawrence MacAulay, to take immediate action to stop any further release of genetically modified (GM or genetically engineered) alfalfa seed, following an announcement by the company Forage Genetics International (FGI) that it has sold a limited quantity for spring 2016 planting in Eastern Canada. This is the first time that any GM alfalfa has been sold in Canada.
April 21, 2016 8:17 AM
Bill S201 Moves to House of Commons
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(Kitchener, ON) April 14, 2016 – The Canadian Coalition for Genetic Fairness wishes to congratulate Senator James Cowan for his tireless commitment to moving Canada forward on ending genetic discrimination. For the past three years Senator Cowan has been working in the Senate to move Genetic non-discrimination legislation forward. Bill S201 has now made it past 3rd reading in the Senate and will be moved forward to the House of Commons.
April 20, 2016 1:59 PM
Genome Alberta salutes young Alberta scientists
Filed Under: Gerry Ward | 0 Comments
Science Fair season is almost over in Alberta. Now the finalists, announced at their regional fairs, are doing last minute touch-ups on their projects. The delegates are busy collecting the paperwork and I am part of the team that reads all the finalists’ 5-page summaries. We are all preparing for the Canada-Wide Science Fair (CWSF), which will be held this year in Montreal from May 15 to 20. This year it is turning into an entire ‘science festival’. Besides the science fair component, there will also be immersive hands-on science activities, many engaging speakers and new this year – a STEM Teachers’ conference. It will be an exciting time for ‘Team Alberta’ and we at Genome Alberta wish them well on this adventure.

Genome Alberta sponsors awards for all Alberta science fair regions. Many of the Genome Alberta award winners will be representing their region with competitive projects at this year’s CWSF. We support independent research project-based learning and we are very proud of the outstanding young scientists who are recipients of this year’s Genome Alberta Awards.

Here is a list of the 2016 Genome Alberta award winners.
April 15, 2016 10:44 AM
LISTEN: Real elevator pitches from BioGenius
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On April 2nd young Alberta scientists gathered in Edmonton to compete in the Sanofi BioGenius challenge.
The competition is held ever year to nurture people and ideas focused on biotechnology. Genome Alberta is pleased to be one of the Alberta sponsors and this year we worked closely with Mindfuel to bring you some of the stories from the competition. (you can find all the sponsors on the Biogenius Canada website)
April 13, 2016 11:29 AM
LISTEN: It's not just science, the Biogenius challenge is an experience
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The Sanofi Biogenius challenge is all about biotechnology but it combines mathematics, biology, and chemistry for real projects that can have real world impact. Since 1994, this made-in-Canada competition has paired high school students with university level scientists to carry out research projects in biotechnology. Don't look on the Biogenius challenge as a Science Fair on steroids, but rather look on it as young people pushing the boundaries of their own knowledge while charting an early course for their future.
April 8, 2016 9:35 AM
New therapies for Ulcerative Colitis
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Vancouver, BC – Ulcerative colitis (UC) is a relapsing, remitting inflammatory disease that causes diarrhea, abdominal pain, fecal urgency and incontinence. Systemic symptoms such as fever, weight loss, malaise and fatigue can also occur in more extensive disease. Current treatments are designed to suppress immune function, introducing significant and sometimes life-threatening side effects. 

April 8, 2016 7:47 AM
Innovative Alberta pulp mill to recover wood byproduct for transformation into green bioproducts
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EDMONTON – Alberta is home to the first commercial-scale plant in Canada to extract a natural substance in trees called lignin for the development of sustainable new value-added products.

West Fraser, a diversified forest products company with operations across Western Canada, has built the new plant at its pulp mill in Hinton, Alta. The state-of-the art facility will recover lignin from the pulping operation using a novel technology, and transform this wood byproduct into useful, environmentally friendly bioproducts.

The $30-million plant – made possible through joint funding by industry and government – began production in March.
March 24, 2016 2:43 PM
More Genome Alberta Award Winners
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As Alberta regional science fairs are held in this province, we are receiving names and photos of this year’s deserving winners. This past week, regional fairs were held in Medicine Hat, Peace River, Canmore and Priddis.

March 23, 2016 2:45 PM
Paul G. Allen Announces $100 million to Launch The Paul G. Allen Frontiers Group
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News Release - Philanthropist and entrepreneur Paul G. Allen today announced an initial commitment of $100 million to create The Paul G. Allen Frontiers Group, whose purpose will be to explore the landscape of bioscience and fund ideas at the frontier of knowledge to advance science and make the world better. As part of the launch, the Frontiers Group announces its first cohort of funded projects with four new Allen Distinguished Investigators (ADI) and two Allen Discovery Centers in partnership with Stanford University and Tufts University.
March 23, 2016 12:19 PM
Genome Canada applauds federal leadership in genomics
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March 22, 2016, Ottawa, Ontario – Genome Canada was delighted with a new federal investment of $237.2 million in funding for genomics, announced as part of Budget 2016.  

“The Government of Canada has shown tremendous leadership by making a considerable investment in arguably the most promising field of science and technology,” said Mr. Marc LePage, President and CEO of Genome Canada. “We are pleased that the government sees science as foundational to Canada’s next-generation economy.  Genomics is an enabling technology that will spur innovation and growth in many important sectors for Canada including health, agriculture & agri-food, forestry, fisheries & aquaculture, the environment, energy and mining. It will also be a major asset in addressing challenges posed by climate change.”