Nuclear technologies will help diagnose and treat human disease and improve crop productivity
SASKATOON, Dec. 18, 2018 /CNW/ – When innovative nuclear health and crop research thrives here at home, Canada's economy benefits, as does the well-being of people around the world.
Today, the Honourable Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for Western Economic Diversification Canada (WD), announced that 50 new well-paying jobs will be created in Saskatoon thanks to a $2.2 million investment to the Sylvia Fedoruk Canadian Centre for Nuclear Innovation. Through this investment, the Fedoruk Centre will develop the Innovation Wing at the Saskatchewan Centre for Cyclotron Sciences at the University of Saskatchewan.
The Innovation Wing will house specialized laboratories where university and industrial researchers will develop new drugs containing medical isotopes. These radiopharmaceuticals are used to detect and treat cancers and other diseases. In addition, a new imaging lab that is the first of its kind in Canada will enable researchers to use radioisotopes to better understand the flow of nutrients in plants and soil bacteria to improve crop productivity.
“Through the Innovation and Skills Plan, the Government of Canada is supporting innovative research that will benefit the health and well-being of people around the world, while contributing to a prosperous Canadian economy and growing the middle class. Funding towards this project is a reflection of our commitment to advance research in nuclear technology, medicine, and agriculture, while creating new commercial opportunities for western Canadians.”
– The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for Western Economic Diversification Canada
“For over 60 years, Saskatchewan has been home to pioneers in nuclear medicine and technology that have made us renowned the world over. Today, our government is investing in next-generation innovation that's creating more good middle-class jobs and strengthening our industry.”
– The Honourable Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Preparedness
“The Fedoruk Centre is deeply grateful to Western Economic Diversification Canada for helping to equip the Innovation Wing of the Saskatchewan Centre for Cyclotron Sciences at the University of Saskatchewan. This investment enables Saskatchewan researchers and students to create new nuclear imaging agents and prove their effectiveness in living plants or animals, to advance agricultural technologies, and to treat diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and heart disease.”
– John Root, Executive Director, Sylvia Fedoruk Canadian Centre for Nuclear Innovation
“This major federal investment in a key component of our University of Saskatchewan life sciences cluster enhances our unique-in-Canada capability for innovative imaging research related to humans, animals and plants. Our cyclotron's new Innovation Wing will reveal underlying processes in living specimens that can lead to disease, complementing the outstanding biomedical imaging at our Canadian Light Source synchrotron and together improving health and agriculture in Canada.”
– Karen Chad, Vice-President Research, University of Saskatchewan
- Since 2011, the Saskatchewan Centre for Cyclotron Sciences as provided medical isotopes for more than 5000 PET-CT scans of patients in Saskatchewan, Alberta, and Manitoba, to diagnose and treat cancer.
- As a growing nuclear imaging cluster in Saskatchewan, the Centre is enabling more than 20 young researchers to examine better ways to diagnose diseases, invent new detectors and targeted therapies, and apply nuclear imaging to advance agricultural sciences.
- The Saskatchewan Centre for Cyclotron Sciences has provided three companies with access to specialized facilities and expertise to accelerate new nuclear medical technologies towards the marketplace.
Saskatchewan Centre for Cyclotron Sciences receives new investment for Innovation Wing
The Government of Canada is funding the development of new facilities to support innovative research in nuclear imaging and therapies using radioisotopes. This research will benefit the well-being of humans and animals while improving agricultural practices.
The Sylvia Fedoruk Canadian Centre for Nuclear Innovation (Fedoruk Centre) is receiving close to $2.2 million to renovate and equip the Innovation Wing of the Saskatchewan Centre for Cyclotron Sciences (SCCS) at the University of Saskatchewan.
The renovated wing will bridge the gap between developing nuclear imaging drugs and proving their effectiveness in living specimens to advance human medicine, veterinary science and agriculture. It will enable more than 20 researchers to test better ways of diagnosing cancer, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's and heart disease, invent new detectors and targeted therapies; and apply nuclear imaging to advance agricultural sciences.
The investment will help the SCCS to become a focal point for a growing nuclear imaging cluster at the University of Saskatchewan, which includes the Canadian Light Source.
SCCS research success to date:
- Since the SCCS was established in 2016, it has provided medical isotopes for more than 5,000 nuclear-imaging scans of patients in Saskatchewan at Royal University Hospital, as well as in Alberta and Manitoba to diagnose and treat cancer.
- The SCCS is reliably manufacturing the radio-pharmaceutical “FDG”, enabling doctors to perform nuclear imaging that reveals the size and location of cancer tumours. This means doctors can plan treatments with confidence, and determine progress with certainty.
- The SCCS has provided three companies with access to specialized facilities and expertise to accelerate new nuclear medical technologies towards the marketplace.
By 2021, the SCCS Innovation Wing is expected to deliver social and economic impacts, including:
- at least 50 new high quality jobs;
- at least $500,000 of business expenditures in R&D;
- at least 60 patents or publications about nuclear imaging in life sciences; and
- entry to the marketplace of 10 new products, services or technologies.
A cyclotron produces radioisotopes by bombarding a target material with a stream of accelerated sub-atomic particles. The radioisotope is then attached to a molecule to create an imaging agent or radiopharmaceutical. Radiation released by the radioisotope allows physicians and scientists to see biological processes inside humans, animals and plants, such as spotting cancer cells in a tumour.
- Sylvia Fedoruk Canadian Centre for Nuclear Innovation
- Saskatchewan Centre for Cyclotron Sciences
- Western Economic Diversification Canada
- Government of Canada invests in Saskatchewan innovation, training and economic development initiatives
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SOURCE Western Economic Diversification Canada
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