Posted June 24, 2009

U of T research projects receive $20.9 million funding injection from ORF-RE
By Joyann Callender

TORONTO - Four research projects at the University of Toronto will receive new funding of $20.9 million from the Ontario Research Fund Research Excellence Program (ORF-RE).

The funding, announced by Ontario Minister of Research and Innovation John Wilkinson, will help the university conduct important research that advances health and society. An additional $12 million was announced for two projects based at U of T's partner hospitals.

"I'm delighted that the province has recognized the outstanding and transformative work of these researchers and their teams," said Professor Paul Young, U of T's vice-president (research). "In addition to advancing cutting edge research, projects like these allow us to train the next generation of researchers. We are enormously grateful for this investment and proud to work in partnership with the province to conduct research that will improve the quality of life of all Ontarians."

Each project will receive matching funds from its home institution and from private sector partners, bringing the total investment in the six projects to $98.9 million.

"Innovation is an essential component in the drive to lead Ontario into a strong and prosperous future," said University of Toronto President David Naylor. "This marvelous investment from the Government of Ontario in university and hospital research is a powerful expression that our scientists and scholars play a critical role in building our capacity to innovate."

The ORF-RE program promotes research excellence in Ontario by supporting transformative, internationally significant research of strategic value to the province. It focuses on scientific excellence, strong commercialization potential and targets new, leading-edge research initiatives.

The four U of T projects that received ORF-RE grants are:

• 'Pre-competitive Development of Chemical Probes for Epigenic Targets: A Novel Paradigm,' led by Professor Cheryl Arrowsmith of the Department of Medical Biophysics.

• 'Nanomaterial Enabled Products for the Ontario Manufacturing Sector,' led by Professor Ewe Erb of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering.

• 'Therapeutic Biomaterials for Regenerative Medicine,' led by Professor Michael Sefton of the Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering and the Department of Chemical Engineering and Applied Chemistry.

• The ÆGIS Project: Integrating Accessibility into Emerging Information and Communication Technology, led by Professor Jutta Treviranus of the Faculty of Information.

The two hospital-based projects are:

• 'Ontario Preclinical Imaging Consortium,' led by Professor Stuart Foster of Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and U of T's Department of Medical Biophysics.

• Integrated Molecular Pathology of Targeted Cancer Therapy in Lung Cancer,' led by Professor Ming Sound Tsao of the University Health Network and U of T's Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology.

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