February 19, 2018 – Montreal, Quebec – Health Canada
Neurological conditions affect an estimated 3.6 million Canadians. New and ground-breaking research is the key to improving the lives of those living with brain-related diseases and disorders.
Today, on behalf of Health Minister Ginette Petitpas Taylor, David Lametti, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, joined Brain Canada to announce a $10.17-million grant to establish the Canadian Open Neuroscience Platform (CONP). The CONP is a partnership of 15 universities that will facilitate the dissemination of data that support research to advance treatments for Canadians suffering from neurological diseases. The announcement was made during the CONP’s inaugural meeting at the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital at McGill University.
Neuroscience research can produce massive amounts of data in multiple forms such as genetic, behavioural data and brain imaging. This information can support a wide range of research, such as work to identify early signs of Alzheimer’s disease or research to advance drugs that could stop neurodegeneration.
Through the CONP, leading neuroscientists from across Canada will be able to pool data from diverse sources making this information easier to access and share. Access to the CONP and the data within it will help researchers find patterns that can potentially lead to breakthroughs to prevent, diagnose and treat neurological conditions. Ultimately, the CONP will help researchers collect, link and analyze data from across the country more easily, leading to better and faster outcomes for patients.
The $10.17 million in funding for this project was provided through the Canada Brain Research Fund, and includes $5.08 million from the Government of Canada.
“The Government of Canada is committed to supporting Canadians with neurological conditions. The platform being created with this funding will be a central repository for innovative brain research. With access to such data, researchers will be better equipped to pursue medical breakthroughs that will improve the lives of Canadians living with brain diseases and disorders.”
The Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor
Minister of Health
“Brain Canada is excited to have been the catalyst for this national platform to ‘“hardwire”” Canadian neuroscience—to collect, link and analyze data from across the country, to get to improved patient outcomes more rapidly.”
President and CEO of Brain Canada
“This project will enable researchers to effectively share, store and process data and maximize the potential of research that already exists—research that could lead to new ways of preventing, diagnosing and treating neurological conditions.”
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development
The CONP is made up of researchers from the University of British Columbia, Simon Fraser University, University of Calgary, University of Alberta, Western University, Brock University, University of Toronto, York University, Queen’s University, Concordia University, McGill University, Université de Montreal, Université de Sherbrooke, Université Laval, and Dalhousie University.
The Canada Brain Research Fund is a public-private matching fund of up to $240 million administered by the Brain Canada Foundation.
The Government of Canada has committed up to $120 million to the fund to help improve the health and quality of life of Canadians affected by brain diseases and disorders, such as depression, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, autism and Parkinson’s disease
Office of Ginette Petitpas Taylor
Minister of Health
Health Canada Media Relations