“My Virtual Dream” is an innovative and interactive live performance experience of the Virtual Brain technology developed by researchers at Baycrest Health Sciences Centre in partnership with neuroscience experts around the world.
Baycrest Heath Sciences’ “My Virtual Dream,” an innovative and interactive live performance experience at the intersection of science, art and music, is currently touring the installation with appearances in Amsterdam in May and more scheduled for Irvine, CA in October.
MaRS Innovation is working with the Baycrest team to commercialize the technology behind the demonstration, known as the virtual brain.
My Virtual Dream was featured in TechVibes on July 8 and in a PLOS blog published on August 14, 2015.
“The Virtual Dream tour is a ‘living lab’ that engages the public, fuels science, creates art and educates while it entertains,” says Richard Tavener, executive producer of the Virtual Dream tour.
Participants wear the Muse, a brain-computer interface headset provided by InteraXon, and use focus and mental relaxation states to complete a science game and create a stunning array of visuals and music.
The brain data collected at Nuit Blanche has yielded insights about how the brain learns and a science paper about this massive, one-night neuroscience experiment. The paper, which appeared in the July issue of PLOS One, found that:
Fanny Sie, MaRS Innovation’s head of imaging technologies, was quoted in Tanya Powley‘s article, “Printing whole organs remains a long way off,” for the U.K.’s Financial Times on June 11, 2015, regarding the technology’s potential to transform existing healthcare practices.
MI does wish to note that the article inaccurately attributes the PrintAlive device’s development to MaRS Innovation; MI is working with the University of Toronto inventing team, led by Dr. Axel Gunther, to commercialize the device.
Here’s a short excerpt:
Bioprinting could save pharmaceutical companies a lot of money, according to Fanny Sie of MaRS Innovation, a Toronto-based company. The company has developed the PrintAlive Bioprinter, which can print skin that could be used to treat people with large scale burns. The printed tissues could be used by pharmaceutical companies to test the toxicity of new drugs, and help them decide if it is worth starting costly animal and then human clinical trials.
Toronto-based commercial arm of BioDiaspora research program tracks global spread of infectious diseases in real-time; fourth MI company to reach Series A
TORONTO (Dec. 2, 2014) — BlueDot, a Toronto-based social benefit corporation founded by Dr. Kamran Khan, an infectious disease physician and scientist, tracks and predicts the global spread of infectious diseases.
Spun off from St. Michael’s Hospital in partnership with MaRS Innovation (and formerly known as BioDiaspora Inc.), BlueDot, has secured a Series A venture capital funding from Horizons Ventures. Funded by Sir Li Ka-shing, Horizons invests in what they call “game-changing disruptive tech,” and has a proven track record in making early-stage investments (i.e., Facebook, Skype, Waze, Siri and Spotify).
The company is the fourth in MaRS Innovation’s portfolio to reach Series A. MaRS Innovation provided $400,000 in seed funding and worked with BlueDot and St. Michael’s to incorporate the company and develop its initial business strategy, intellectual property protection strategy and go-to-market plan. The Ontario Centres of Excellence also provided $140,000 in commercialization grants that helped BlueDot get off the ground.
BlueDot is the commercial arm of Dr. Khan’s academic research program called BioDiaspora, which was developed at the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute of St. Michael’s. BioDiaspora models how infectious diseases can spread and impact populations globally by analyzing big data such as the annual movements of more than 3 billion travelers on commercial flights; human, animal and insect population data; climate data from satellites; and news reports of disease outbreaks. The program was inspired by the Toronto’s SARS crisis in 2003 and its capabilities scientifically validated in prestigious academic journals such as the Lancet and the New England Journal of Medicine.
During its development, BlueDot’s platform technology was used by numerous international agencies, including the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, the World Health Organization, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control and the Public Health Agency of Canada to evaluate emerging infectious disease threats, including those during global mass gatherings such as the Olympics and the hajj.
First up is Digifest, an international festival celebrating digital creativity, which runs from May 8 to 10 at the Corus Quay building on Toronto’s Waterfront. Sie will speak about 3D printing and its biological and commercial implications on the Mass Customization Panel Discussion, which runs from 2 to 3 pm on Friday, May 9.
On Monday, Sie joins the opening panel at the OCE Discovery Conference, which runs from May 12 to 13, 2014 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre (South Building). She will speak during the “3D Manufacturing: Beyond the Hype” panel at 9 am on May 13.
MI Project Manger Fanny Sie discusses Toronto’s impact on 3D printing landscape
In a December 4 article, part of a feature series on technology in Toronto, Yonge Street Media reporter Andrew Seale highlights the creative and innovative technological work surrounding the 3D printing and cyber security sectors in the city.
MaRS Innovation’s Fanny Sie is managing business development for the Bioprinter, a 3D printer using University of Toronto technology that’s capable of printing on organic material, including skin.
By printing on skin, the cost of treating burns on the body could be reduced.
Here’s an excerpt from the article (links and emphasis ours):
“It’s one thing to invent a machine that prints skin, but it’s a whole other challenge to bring what seems like the domain of mad science to mass production,” Matthew Braga wrote in “Looking for ways to get ‘skin’ in the game,” published in the Financial Post on July 15.
The article focuses on MaRS Innovation’s (MI) and the Innovations and Partnerships Office’s (University of Toronto) joint efforts to commercialize the bio printer, a “prototype 3D printer that, instead of extruding layers of plastic and other inorganic materials into physical shapes, builds layer upon layer of cell-laden tissue, a process that could lead to the cheap, rapid production of human skin.”
Braga’s article was syndicated in the Regina Leader Post, the Saskatoon Star-Phoenix, and the Vancouver Sun, among other Canadian publications.
Sie manages the Bioprinter technology, which was touched upon during the interview. The bioprinter was invented by Axel Guenther, a professor in the University of Toronto’s Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, PhD student Lian Leng and a team of other researchers.
The Globe and Mail covered the Bioprinter’s development on January 20, 2013; an excerpt of their interviews with Leng and Guenther was included in the program.
Bioprinting and the Internet of Things
The Agenda’s 3D printing episode also included a second segment exploring its implications for home manufacturing and civil liberties. The guests included Matt Ratto, assistant professor in U of T’s Faculty of Information and co-inventor and CEO of Shotlst (a UTEST company).
Professor Matt Ratto, co-founder of Shotlst and director of the Critical Making Lab, discusses 3D printing, home manufacturing and civil liberties on TVO’s The Agenda.
Ratto described his experience downloading and printing the Liberator, a gun that can be printed using 3D printing technology, to better understand the process required and the resulting gun’s capabilities.
MaRS Innovation’s Fanny Sie, project manager in physical sciences and medical devices with specialization in medical imaging, is appearing on TVO’s The Agenda with Steve Paikin at 8 pm on June 5, 2013 to discuss 3D printing and the technology’s applications in healthcare and other aspects of human society.
Sie manages the Bioprinter technology, which was invented by Axel Guenther, a professor in the University of Toronto’s Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, PhD student Lian Leng and a team of other researchers. The Globe and Mail covered the Bioprinter’s development on January 20, 2013.
By offering early-stage funding in tandem with hands-on management, business development, mentorship and intellectual property protection strategy, MI acts as a commercialization agent for its members and researchers.