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mi_logo_squareTORONTO, ON (April 23, 2014) — MaRS Innovation congratulates the Federal Government’s deepened commitment to support Canadian research and innovation, particularly in the healthcare sector. In particular, the $42 million over five years dedicated to support the Canadian Centre for Aging and Brain Health Innovation at Baycrest Health Sciences, which includes $32 million in support from the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev).

Baycrest is a founding member institution of MaRS Innovation.

“As a Baycrest partner and long-time champions of the commercialization potential of its world-class science in brain and geriatric health care, MaRS Innovation welcomes this news,” says Dr. Raphael (Rafi) Hofstein, president and CEO. “We look forward to advancing existing neuroscience projects in partnership with Baycrest, such as The Virtual Brain, and to collaborating on new start-up companies and licenses related to dementia and other neurodegenerative diseases.”

Other promising budget allocations for the innovation sector include:

  • Increasing access to venture capital financing to help innovative, high-growth companies grow and create jobs.
  • Providing $14 million over two years to Futurpreneur Canada to support young entrepreneurs.
  • $14 million over two years starting in 2015-16 to provide targeted support for innovations in health sciences, including support for the Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement (CFHI) in identifying savings and efficiencies for the healthcare system, particularly regarding palliative care services.
  • $1.33 billion over six years, starting in 2017–18, to the Canada Foundation for Innovation to support advanced research infrastructure at universities, colleges and research hospitals
  • Dedicating an additional $46 million per year to the granting councils to support basic research, starting in 2016–17.
  • Dedicating $119.2 million over two years, starting in 2015–16, to the National Research Council’s industry-partnered research and development activities.
  • Providing $56.4 million over four years, starting in 2016–17, to Mitacs in support of graduate-level industrial research and development internships.

“As a veteran of the Centres of Excellence for Commercialization of Research (CECR) program, I admire and appreciate the federal government’s move to proactively and forcefully address the Innovation Agenda as it applies to the broad spectrum of technologies under MaRS Innovation’s management,” says Hofstein. “Within our portfolio, we see these and other efforts starting to show a significant return on the government’s investment in strengthening knowledge-based and innovation-driven sectors that are creating the next generation of high-quality jobs for Canadians across this country.”

The full 2015 Federal Budget is posted on the Government of Canada’s website.

About MaRS Innovation

MaRS Innovation is the commercialization agent for Ontario’s exceptional discovery pipeline from 15 leading academic institutions. As a single-entry point to member-based activity of $1 billion in annual research and development, MI is a gateway for investors and licensees to access technology assets. Supported by the Government of Canada through the Networks of Centres of Excellence, by the Government of Ontario through the Ontario Centres of Excellence, and by its 15 member institutions, MI is a transformational partnership that turns research strengths into commercial opportunities. MI’s portfolio includes the most promising assets from its members’ pipeline, which it advances into global markets through industry partnerships, licensing and company creation.

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