Ten years ago, when Toronto entrepreneur Brendan Frey wanted to start his company, he says, “conditions weren’t right.” But by 2015, he found, the local environment had become a lot more hospitable to start-ups. So he launched Deep Genomics, a genetic medicine company. It uses artificial intelligence to discover and advance therapies for rare genetic disorders. Frey, a professor of engineering…
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Another election has come and, mercifully, gone. During the recent federal campaign, the subject of climate change was front and centre, yet, as I watched the debates and read what candidates had to say about the issue, it struck me that most politicians in Canada (aspiring or elected) lack any kind of scientific background. With the exception of climate change…
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Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau won a second term on 21 October, but his Liberal Party lost its majority in parliament. The Liberals and the Conservative Party were locked in a dead heat leading up to election night, and the outcome of the closely fought race brought a sense of relief for many Canadian researchers. Apart from climate change, science issues…
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Blind and partially sighted people no longer have to wait passively for a research breakthrough in hope of treatment options. In fact, people living with genetic eye conditions can now actively drive vision research forward — by enrolling in a patient registry and getting their genes tested. There are 2.2 billion people living with visual impairment globally. Some are living with…
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Last March, Canada’s department of health changed the way it handles the huge amount of data that companies submit when seeking approval for a new drug, biological treatment, or medical device — or a new use for an existing one. For the first time, Health Canada is making large chunks of this information publicly available after it approves or rejects applications. Within…
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A survey suggests that the trust Canadians place in science may be eroding. The survey, by the polling firm Ipsos for the multinational 3M company, also found that nearly half of those surveyed thought scientists are elitist and that a significant number of respondents discounted findings that don’t accord with their personal beliefs. “While science skeptics represent the minority of…
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Despite having the right conditions for innovation — from educated workers to strong research centres — many Canadian-invented patents are being snapped up by foreign firms rather than being developed by Canadian ones, a new study says. The report published by the Institute for Research on Public Policy says Canadians are increasingly likely to transfer or sell their intellectual property to foreign entities, especially with deep-pocketed American companies keen to invest in…
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British Columbia’s booming technology sector and vibrant start-up ecosystem are significant contributors to a strong economy, providing good quality, middle-class jobs. While the sector has flourished over the last decade, it is important to ensure that companies can accelerate beyond the start-up stage and remain competitive in a digital world. That’s why the Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans,…
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The Canadian government is scrambling to respond to a glut of license applications for cannabis research prompted by the drug’s legalization in October 2018. The queue of applicants—there were 251 in line as of late July—and the attendant monthslong waiting times are frustrating scientists interested in the basic biology and therapeutic possibilities of cannabis. The delays are also prompting criticism…
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