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Innovation & Job News

Sunnybrook opens new $160M lab

Last week Canada's Governor General came to town, to offically open the Centre for Research in Image-Guided Therapeutics at Sunnybrook.

The new $160 million lab—official acronym: CeRIGT, pronounced "see right" (since they focus on imaging technologies)—was built with the help of $75 million from the federal government's Canada Foundation for Innovation.

About 80 per cent of health-related research happens in hospital-based enterprises, says Dr. Michael Julius, vice president of the Sunnybrook Research Institute, but because a hospital's first and primary focus is providing care to its patients, that research "often gets lost." The new lab's goal is to bring the clinical and research worlds closer together, and foster opportunities to use research to have a more immediate impact on the care that's provided.

"This infrastructure is novel," he says, "in that it is a physical plant that brings our science and their teams, and our clinicians and their teams, all working together shoulder to shoulder."

Julius gives a few examples of the kinds of collaborations that are already in progress, calling them harbingers of what's to come. One such instance: researchers who are monitoring cancer therapies as they are administered in real time, enabling clinicians to decide whether a particular course of treatment is working within a week rather than by running tests on patients three or four months later.

The lab includes 30 private sector partners, and will create opportunities for about 10 or 15 new principal researchers, each of whom may have a team of up to 10 trainees and assistants.

Author: Hamutal Dotan
Source: Dr. Michael Julius, Vice President, Sunnybrook Research Institute
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