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Media Release, Edmonton, January 22, 2015 -
The Honourable Michelle Rempel, Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification, today announced an investment of $2,983,800 towards state-of-the-art metabolomics assessment equipment to strengthen western Canadian companies’ ability to commercialize new discoveries.
This announcement reinforces Alberta’s position as a global leader in the emerging metabolomics market enabling Genome Alberta, together with the University of Alberta, to establish the Metabolomics Technology Demonstration Centre.
The equipment, a 700 MHz Nuclear Magnetic Resonance machine and a Quadrupole-Time of Flight Mass Spectrometer, will assist companies in the metabolomics sector move biomarkers from the research lab to the medical testing facility. Companies will test, validate, and assemble prototype kits using existing research from the University’s Metabolomics Innovation Centre’s biomarker panels, to cost-effectively create more accurate and less invasive medical tests.
In addition to an investment from the National Institute of Nanotechnology, Alberta Innovates Health Solutions, Metabolomics Technologies Inc. (MTI), and Genome Canada are also contributors towards this project.
• Metabolomics is a growing field of research that examines the comprehensive, qualitative and quantitative cellular-level activities in cells, tissues and organisms.
• Metabolites provide scientists with a powerful route to measure gene-environment interactions, which is helpful in generating health solutions in human and animal health, agriculture and nutrition.
• One-third of all metabolomics companies in the world are located in Alberta.
• The University of Alberta houses the world’s largest collection of metabolomics standards and most of the world’s metabolomics data resources
“Our Government is proud to support the establishment of the Metabolomics Technology Demonstration Centre. By creating a hub for scientists and businesses to transform innovative research discoveries into viable products, we are further positioning Alberta at the forefront of the metabolomics market.”
- Michelle Rempel, Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification
“Genome Alberta has been supporting metabolomics research in Alberta for several years now and we’re pleased to have been part of making Alberta an international focus in the field. Dr. Wishart’s work is recognized around the world and we’re looking forward to this WD funding being used to develop applied solutions in a number of key sectors.”
- David Bailey, President and CEO, Genome Alberta
“The Metabolomics Technology Demonstration Centre will provide Canadian researchers with cutting-edge infrastructure and technical expertise to support translation of innovative biomarker discoveries into real life applications. We are very excited to work with our collaborators to develop prototype tools and products that will be implemented and commercialized through industry partnerships.”
- Dr. David Wishart, Professor, Departments of Biological Sciences and Computing Science, Faculty of Science, University of Alberta
“Partnerships are the way to advance research and innovation into health. We are delighted to be part of the federal-provincial partnership that is supporting the translation of the work of Dr. Wishart and his team into products and technologies to improve health and well-being.”
- Dr. Cy Frank, President and CEO, Alberta Innovates Health Solutions
“We are pleased to see Canada’s Genomics Enterprise strengthened by this new federal investment in metabolomics. Breakthroughs across many sectors of importance to the social and economic well-being of Canadians rely on researchers across Canada having access to leading-edge ‘omics technologies, which are rapidly evolving.”
- Dr. Pierre Meulien, President and CEO, Genome Canada
"MTI is proud to support the establishment of the Centre. As the commercial arm, MTI will use the equipment to accelerate biomarker validation trials and fulfill regulatory approvals necessary for commercialization of metabolomic-based products. We are excited to work with the Centre's sponsors and supporters and bring to market metabolomic-based research that benefits Canadians."
- Dr. Richard Fedorak, President, Metabolomic Technologies Inc.
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We'll THe picture at the top is from the announcement and we'll post more pictures from the event soon. In the meantime here is some of the team at the TMIC and a quick click here will give you an audio clip of David Wishart talking about how metabolomics is part of the trend towards personalized medicine.
A more complete interview with Dr. Wishart is also available.