Canadian innovation will give patients affordable, non-invasive, accurate test for cancer or infectious diseases; R&D team to remain in Toronto discovery district TORONTO and SAN FRANCISCO (May 3, 2016) —…
MaRS Innovation and its member institutions are is profiled in International Innovation‘s July issue (#191) in a feature interview with Dr. Rafi Hofstein, MI’s president and CEO, written by Rosemary Peters.
The article is posted on the publication’s website and viewable through a digital interface (pages 80 and 81).
Here’s an excerpt from Dr. Hofstein’s comments:
“Canada’s academic research community is internationally highly competitive, but it has been argued that its scientific commercial success tags behind other countries such as the U.S. and the U.K. While this remains a matter of debate, I do agree that we need to continually encourage additional sources of seed capital to join is so as to allow for accelerated advancement of early-stage technologies. Industry needs to become much more engaged in advancing early-stage (and promising!) technologies emerging from the academic sector, which are usually young and in significant attention, navigation, management expertise and seed capital provisions. These are areas of rising importance in Canada, as many innovations fall into the ‘valley of death’ due to a lack of proper funding, or they leave the country and flourish in the U.S. where funding is more abundant.
In “Big-Brain Hunting: The Key to Supercluster Success,” the Huffington Post‘s Pat Lynch investigates how and what makes start-ups successful. Attracting top-talent is listed as a major reason, but so is the environment required to give start-ups the tools they need to flourish.
Lynch highlights MaRS Innovation as a driving force in sustaining the innovation industry in Canada by attracting big ideas and global talent, using former MI project manager Lyssa Neel as an example.
Neel helped launch the education sector start-up Crowdmark, and is now the company’s chief operating officer. Crowdmark is a graduate of University of Toronto Early-Stage Technology (UTEST) program; UTEST is now accepting applications for their third cohort until April 11, 2014.
Every six weeks, MaRS Innovation’s marketing and communications manager writes a guest post for the MaRS Discovery District blog profiling MI’s activities or one of our start-up companies. You can read the original post on the MaRS blog.
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.
Earlier this year, the Networks of Centres of Excellence of Canada awarded MI $14.95 million to continue its mandate as a Centre of Excellence for Commercialization and Research (CECR), matched by $25 million from membership fees and private sector investments.
So what does that success mean for MI’s ability to serve the needs of academic entrepreneurs based in Toronto?
TORONTO, Feb. 19, 2013 — Xagenic Inc., a privately-held molecular diagnostics company, today announced that it will receive up to $990,000 in funding from the Government of Canada to support design and development of the first lab-free molecular diagnostic platform with a 20-minute time to result.
The Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario), made the announcement in the keynote speech at the Conference Board of Canada’s Business Innovation Summit 2013 in Toronto this morning.
Networks of Centres of Excellence recognizes strength of partnership between MI and its 16 member institutions
MaRS Innovation (MI), created in 2008, bridges the chasm between these early-stage technologies and successful start-up companies and licensable technologies. By offering early-stage funding in tandem with hands-on management, mentorship and IP strategy protection, MI acts as a commercialization agent for its 16 member institutions.
The Networks of Centres of Excellence (NCE) has recognized the increasing strength of this novel partnership by awarding MI $14.95 million in funding through the Centres of Excellence for Commercialization and Research (CECR) program.
“There is a path somewhere between extended study and becoming an office worker,” wrote The Varsity‘s Angela Brock, in “Be Your Own Boss: Student entrepreneurs combine creativity and business to forge new career paths” (February 3, 2012). “As it turns out, there are plenty of opportunities for those looking to flex their entrepreneurial muscles without straying too far from the bosom of U of T.”
Brock’s article describes UTEST, the joint U of T-MaRS Innovation program that helps students, faculty and recent alumni commercialize software ideas.
Twelve of the 65 participating companies were selected to pitch a group of over 100 chief medical information officers, chief information officers and chief medical officers from U.S. hospitals, along with venture capitalists and industry representatives.
BCS’s CEO Rajesh Sharma delivered a strong pitch and was interviewed for a story in MedCity News.
VitalHub Chart has been named to Apple’s list of top 80 apps for doctors, nurses, patients and healthcare professionals in the “EMR and patient monitoring” category.
Here’s a description of the app, which is made by Toronto-based VitalHub Corp., from the Apple list curators:
“VitalHub Chart puts patient data at your fingertips. You can access the information you need any time, anywhere there is WiFi or cellular service. No more waiting for a free desktop, hunting for a workstation on wheels, or carrying printouts on rounds.”
TORONTO, ON (November 13, 2012) — The Ontario Institute for Cancer Research (OICR) and MaRS Innovation (MI) today announced $1.5 million in funding from OICR over three years to further develop Cellax™, a nanoparticle drug that could offer an alternative to chemotherapy with fewer side effects.
“Cellax is promising because it provides a more targeted strategy for treating tumours, killing tumour cells while minimizing the effect on healthy tissue,” said Dr. Rima Al-awar, director, OICR’s Medicinal Chemistry Platform. “OICR is proud to invest in a technology that has such potential to one day improve quality of life for cancer patients.”
Cellax, invented by Dr. Shyh-Dar Li and his research team in OICR’s Medicinal Chemistry Platform group, is a drug-polymer conjugate based on Dr. Li’s proprietary NanoCMC™ technology. These polymers self-assemble into defined nanoparticles and, when injected, selectively accumulate in tumours. Because of this property, the drug is released where it is most needed, increasing therapeutic benefits and reducing the side effects associated with conventional chemotherapy.