Each week Taproot brings together the latest on the research, technology, companies and people changing health and healthcare for the better in Edmonton. If you have a suggestion for a future edition of the roundup, send it to hello@taprootedmonton.ca for consideration.

Here are some highlights from this week’s Health Innovation Roundup:

Local headlines

  • Edmonton-based Freedom Cannabis Inc. has been given the freedom to start growing its crops for both commercial and medical research. Health Canada granted medical and commercial growing licences to the company for Phase 1 of its grow facility in Acheson.
  • What will a UCP government mean for health innovation? Both the NDP and UCP promised various tech and research investments:
    • The NDP’s “fighting for you” platform promised: “We will build on our global reputation for excellence in artificial intelligence and health technology, bringing investment and jobs through our five-year Artificial Intelligence Acceleration Initiative which directs investment to help AI experts commercialize their innovations.”
    • The UCP’s “Strong and Free” platform offers: “A Smarter Approach to Innovation will make Alberta a magnet for investment in new technologies including artificial intelligence, health sciences, geothermal energy, and information technology.”
  • During the campaign Jason Kenney promised to cancel the planned superlab, construction on which began last month. “Public labs across Alberta need reinvestment whether it goes into a single new building with DynaLife included or not,” wrote Elise Stolte.
  • The Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health (CADTH) symposium wrapped up on Tuesday after two days in Edmonton. “With all of these new technologies, this new innovation, comes a whole lot hope,” said Dr. Brian O’Rourke, president and CEO of CADTH.


  • The Canadian Care Centre Open House will include tours of of the new medical centre on April 24 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at 110, 6925 Gateway Blvd NW.
  • SingularityU Canada’s 2019 Summit will be held in Edmonton on April 23 and 24. This year’s event will focus on challenges concerning Health, Energy, Prosperity, and Citizenship.
  • The John Cameron Changing Lives Foundation will host the fundraising music and speaking event CRESCENDO at the Winspear Centre on May 4 at 7 p.m. TSN sports personality Michael Landsberg and performers with Edmonton Singing Christmas Tree will take the stage in support Addiction and Mental Health Access 24/7.
  • The Canadian Cytometry and Microscopy Association will host its next conference at the University of Alberta on June 17 and 18.
  • The lunches with leaders speakers series will bring Josh Blair, Group President and Chief Corporate Officer with TELUS, to speak about Health Innovation on Sept. 10 at the Sutton Place Hotel from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Tickets are $59 for Edmonton Chamber of Commerce Members and $69 plus GST for the general public.

You’ll have to travel for:

  • The T4M Start-up World trade show for medical technology innovators will be held in Stuttgart, Germany on May 7 to 9.
  • Abstract submissions for eHealth 2019 have closed, but there is room at the conference for delegates. The conference runs from May 26 to 29 at the Beanfield Centre in Toronto, ON.
  • Inventure$ 2019, an “un-conference” for entrepreneurs and startups to connect with investors, will be held in Calgary from June 7 to 9.

Beyond Edmonton 

  • For the first time, scientists out of the Tel Aviv University have 3D printed a heart using a patient’s own cells.

The Health Innovation Roundup, sponsored by Health City, is a weekly email newsletter written and published by Taproot Edmonton.

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