The Health Innovation Roundup, sponsored by Health Cities, is written and published weekly by Taproot Edmonton to bring you the latest news and events in research, technology, companies and people changing health for the better in Edmonton.
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- DrugBank has secured $9 million in seed funding, allowing it to expand its AI-powered technologies to tackle the challenges brought on by the exponential growth in the world’s biomedical data. “DrugBank will become a critical infrastructure for health care and change the way medicine is done,” CEO Mike Wilson said in a post published by investor Amplitude Ventures. “Our platform will enable better decision-making by researchers, health-care providers, and regulators than what is possible today.”
- The Logic reported on efforts by the Canadian Critical Drug Initiative, a partnership between the Li Ka Shing Applied Virology Institute and Applied Pharmaceutical Innovation, to secure $85 million in federal funding to develop a biotech cluster in Alberta, aiming to close gaps in the drug supply chain and increase the capacity of Canada’s drug-manufacturing sector. The funding for the initiative, which was first announced in November, would go towards the development of six vaccines and drugs at the institute, as well as building a new manufacturing facility and upgrading the current Biotechnology Business Development Centre.
- Dr. Lorne Tyrrell of the Li Ka Shing Applied Virology Institute has been recognized for his contributions to the field of medical microbiology with the 2022 John G. Fitzgerald Award from the Canadian Association for Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases.
- LinkedIn’s Workforce Report for Canada indicates a faster rate of workforce growth than in the U.S. The University of Alberta ranks sixth on the list of top schools in Canada for tech talent. Edmonton saw a 1.5% increase in tech talent growth over the past 12 months, on par with the San Francisco Bay Area but less than Calgary’s list-topping 2.2%.
- The QS World University Rankings by Subject has ranked the University of Alberta as the top institution in Canada for nursing. The faculty has moved from 17th in the world in 2018 to ninth overall in 2022. UAlberta also led Canada in petroleum engineering.
- Pacylex will be presenting data to the American Association for Cancer Research on the potential of PCLX-001 to treat acute myeloid leukemia.
- Entos Pharmaceuticals has joined BIOTECanada, the voice for Canada’s biotechnology sector.
- BioAlberta shared a video recap of its 2021 policy forum and gala, featuring various movers and shakers in the life sciences industry.
- The ReYu Paralysis Recovery Centre is working with 18-year-old Levi Blackburn to regain motor functions after a horrific car accident initially left him with a grim prognosis. “He’s come a long way, to the point where he’s starting to move a lot more on his own, which is really exciting,” neuro-exercise specialist Brooklyn Janzen told Global News.
- The Edmonton Zone Medical Staff Association’s opioid poisoning committee has laid out a series of recommendations for the provincial government to reduce drug poisoning deaths, including increasing access to supervised consumption sites, implementing a safer drug supply program, and decriminalizing personal possession. City council’s community and public services committee has voted to develop a drug decriminalization strategy, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau discussed the opioid crisis with Mayor Amarjeet Sohi in Edmonton this week, criticizing the provincial government’s focus on recovery instead of harm reduction. In 2021, 1,771 Albertans died of drug poisoning, 674 of whom were in Edmonton.
- A group called Protect our Province Alberta held rallies in Edmonton and Calgary to show support for Alberta’s public health-care system and against the introduction of private health care, prompted in part by the dismissal of Dr. Verna Yiu as CEO of Alberta Health Services. Former health executive Ralph Coombs also criticized the dismissal of Yiu and the push for privatization.
- Bent Arrow Traditional Healing Society has secured the funding it needs for the construction of a Ceremonial Building, a “home for healing and reconciliation” that it hopes to start building in Parkdale this summer.
- April 13, 11am: The Path to Pandemic-Proof: What the Health and Life Sciences Ecosystem Needs Today
- April 19, 12pm: Indigenous Perspectives with Dr. Wayne Clark, PhD
- April 20, 12:30pm: Pediatric Research Day 2022 — Keynote speaker Nobel Laureate Dr. Michael Houghton
- April 21, 8:45am: Student Research Day 2022 at MacEwan University
- April 21, 1pm: Co-Designing the Virtual Clinic in Physical Rehabilitation
- April 26, 4pm: Virtual Expedition: Organ Transplants
- April 27, 4pm: Ethical Data and AI – Salon #5 from AI4Society
- April 27, 12pm: Building a Team for Success – Sandra Spencer (for University of Alberta students, postdocs, faculty, and staff)
- April 28, 12pm: Companies Growing Companies: Learn with Best Buy Health and Age-Well from Health Cities
- May 5-6: 8th Annual Undergraduate Research in Science Conference of Alberta at MacEwan University
- May 12, 4pm: Health Innovators’ Meetup at Enterprise Square
- May 17: DiscoveryLab Meeting
- May 24-27: Amii’s AI Week
- June 1-3: Inventures conference in Calgary and online
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