Ontario has been a leader in stem cell and regenerative medicine research for more than 50 years, thanks to the pivotal studies of Drs. Jim Till and Ernest McCulloch that first identified stem cells and defined their key properties.
Since that time, many more Ontario leaders have contributed to our knowledge of stem cells, including how stem cells organize themselves in early development (Janet Rossant), discoveries of new populations of stem cells in the eye (Derek van der Kooy), the skin (Freda Miller) and the heart (Gordon Keller), and that cancer may, in fact, be due to abnormal stem cell activity (John Dick).
OIRM continues to build on this rich history by leveraging Ontario’s strengths, which include:
- A collaborative network of over 250 research programs
- Established commercialization processes with strong links to international industry
- State-of-the-art cell processing and manufacturing facilities located across the province
- World-class clinical infrastructure and expertise for implementing early stage cell therapy trials (phase I-II)
- Demonstrated success in creating and incubating well-funded spin-off companies
- Favourable regulatory environment and philanthropic community
Though collaboration, partnerships and a dedicated focus on providing the right support for translational research OIRM is enabling more made-in-Ontario products and therapies reach health care providers and their patients, here at home and around the world.