Ontario has a strong history in stem cell and regenerative medicine research. It was in Toronto, at the Princess Margaret Hospital, that stem cells were first identified by Drs. James Till and Ernest McCulloch. Their inspired work laid the foundation for an entire field of international study and for a world-leading community of researchers and organizations. In Ontario, these collaborating organizations include the Ontario Stem Cell Institute (OSCI, established in 2011) and the Centre for Commercialization of Regenerative Medicine (CCRM, established 2011), as well as a number of other provincial research centres and institutes.
The Ontario Institute for Regenerative Medicine merged from a partnership between OSCI and CCRM. On November 25, 2014, Ontario’s Honourable Reza Moridi, Minster of Research, Innovation and Science, announced the establishment of OIRM with $3M in funding. A further $25M in support from the Ontario Ministry of Research, Innovation and Science, which will be administered over five years (2015-2020) was announced on June 19, 2015.
OIRM builds on the strengths of OSCI as a network of scientific and clinical leaders and CCRM as a network of industry and business leaders. Following the official announcement of OIRM, OSCI began to wind down, allowing OIRM to integrate and align existing resources and infrastructure for the overall benefit of Ontarians.
The Ontario Advantage
- World-leading scientific discoveries in stem cell and regenerative medicine with Canada ranking third in the world for impact factor
- Collaborative network of over 200 research programs including stem cell biologists, tissue engineers and translational clinicians
- Multidisciplinary Disease Challenge Teams already focused on clinical translation
- Established commercialization entity with strong links to international industry
- World-class clinical infrastructure and expertise for implementing cell therapy trials (phase I-III)
- Process for creating and incubating well-funded spin-offs into the community
- Favourable philanthropic community and public opinion
The Ontario Opportunity
- Public-private consortium creating international cell therapy manufacturing hub
- Creation of companies that:
- Set-up shop in Ontario
- Manufacture cells
- Participate in clinical trials
- Produce affordable therapies that are reimbursable
- Create jobs that stick
- Healthcare system poised to be an early adapter of new therapies
- Major centre for international clinical trials in stem cell and regenerative medicine
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