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Genome BC funding boosts innovation strategy


Vancouver, BC April 2, 2003 British Columbia recently announced that it is providing Genome BC with C$27.5 million to further genomics research and support government’s commitment to making the province a world leader in innovation and scientific advancement.

Competition, Science and Enterprise Minister Rick Thorpe and Health Services Minister Colin Hansen announced the funding at the BC Research Institute for Children’s and Women’s Health.

“This funding is an investment in the future of health care in BC,” said Hansen. “Supporting Genome BC’s health-related research will increase our collective knowledge of genomics and human health, opening the door for even more made-in-Canada health-care treatments and drugs.”

Government made the multi-ministry investment to continue five research projects on early-stage cancer, human gene function, forestry genomics and the interaction of micro-organisms with their environment. The funding will also support the cutting-edge infrastructure essential to innovative research in genomics.

“Genomics research is at the heart of British Columbia’s life-sciences strategy," said Dr Alan Winter, president and CEO of Genome BC. "This funding accelerates the research at our internationally acclaimed universities, hospitals and research institutes and enables us to lead and drive a competitive cluster of genomics research activities that will benefit British Columbians economically and socially.”

The Michael Smith Foundation is contributing an additional $6.1 million, making the total British Columbia commitment to Genome BC’s research programs $33.6 million. The federal government is providing a further $34 million, which was announced previously, through Genome Canada.

Since June 2001, the province has committed almost $900 million to increase advanced education research and access, including $150 million to double the number of technology graduates in BC over five years.