Toronto, ON May 13, 2003 Stem cell research in Canada got a significant boost today with the announcement of a C$5 million gift from the Krembil Foundation. The funding will be used to establish the Krembil Centre for Stem Cell Biology at the Robarts Research Institute in London, Ontario.
Construction is already underway on the 7,000 sq ft Krembil Centre, which is set to open later this year as part of the institute’s seven-storey, $29.5 million building expansion. The expansion will house three new laboratory facilities for flow cytometry, molecular pathology and stem cell culture.
Group director Dr Mick Bhatia, who holds a Canada Research Chair in stem cell biology and regenerative medicine, is now also supported as the Krembil Chair in stem cell biology. As well, the institute has recruited another leading stem cell scientist, Dr Melissa Carpenter to join the Robarts team. Dr Carpenter was formerly the director of stem cell biology at Geron in the San Francisco area.
Part of the Krembil Foundation’s mandate is to support world-class research that has the possibility to make a significant difference in people’s lives. Foundation president Mark Krembil says that his organization feels that stem cell research can make such a difference. In addition, he says the foundation was attracted by two other factors the potential this area of research has in offering Canada a competitive advantage internationally, and the entrepreneurial spark demonstrated by the staff and scientists at Robarts Research itself.