U of T researchers win $17.6 million in latest Canada Research Chairs announcement

April 9th, 2015

Minister of State for Science and technology visits UTM to award 11 new, eight renewed chairs

Jenny Hall and Jane Stirling

University of Toronto researchers made a grand showing Apr. 9 in the federal government’s announcement of $139 million for the Canada Research Chairs (CRC) program, $17.6 million of which will go to 11 new and eight renewed chairs at U of T.

Ed Holder, Canada’s Minister of State for Science and Technology, visited the University of Toronto Mississauga campus to make the announcement. “Through our government’s updated science, technology and innovation strategy, we are making the record investments necessary to push the boundaries of knowledge, create jobs and opportunities, and improve the quality of life of Canadians,” he said.

Leonardo Salmena of the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology and holder of the new CRC in Signal Transduction and Gene Regulation in Cancer, spoke on behalf of the chairholders.

“The Canada Research Chairs program will allow my team to build an infrastructure to conduct excellent science,” Salmena said. “More importantly, it will allow me to have a hand in training Canada’s future researchers.”

Salmena is researching the molecular basis of acute myeloid leukemia, a cancer originating in bone marrow. Through his role as a chairholder, he hopes his research can be used to develop new strategies for preventing and treating this form of cancer.

“We are grateful to the government of Canada for this investment,” said Professor Vivek Goel, U of T’s vice-president, research and innovation. “The CRC program has enabled universities across Canada, U of T among them, to attract and retain the best researchers from around the world. As such, the program is critical to the long-term prosperity of our nation.”

U of T’s new chairholders are:

  • Timothy Chan, Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering — CRC in Novel Optimization and Analytics in Health
  • Lisa Forman, Dalla Lana School of Public Health — CRC in Human Rights and Global Health Equity
  • Teodor Grantcharov, Department of Surgery and St. Michael’s Hospital — CRC in Simulation and Surgical Safety
  • Monica Justice, Department of Molecular Genetics and the Hospital for Sick Children — CRC in Mammalian Molecular Genetics
  • Larissa Katz, Faculty of Law — CRC in Private Law Theory
  • Julie Lefebvre, Department of Molecular Genetics and Hospital for Sick Children — CRC in Developing Neural Circuitries
  • Joel Levine, Department of Biology, U of T Mississauga — CRC in Neurogenetics
  • Jeffrey Meyer, Department of Psychiatry and Centre for Addiction and Mental Health — CRC in Neurochemistry of Major Depression
  • Elizabeth Page-Gould, Department of Psychology — CRC in Social Psychophysiology
  • Catherine Sabiston, Faculty of Kinesiology and Physical Education — CRC in Physical Activity and Mental Health
  • Leonardo Salmena, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre (University Health Network) — CRC in Signal Transduction and Gene Regulation in Cancer

In addition to funding the new chairs, eight chairs were renewed

Renewals

  • Patricia Brubaker, Department of Physiology — CRC in Vascular and Metabolic Biology
  • George Elliott, Department of Mathematics — CRC in Mathematics
  • Sajeev John, Department of Physics — CRC in Optical Sciences
  • Tony Lam, Department of Physiology and University Health Network — CRC in Obesity
  • Andras Nagy, Department of Molecular Genetics and Mount Sinai Hospital — CRC in Stem Cells and Regeneration
  • Geoffrey Ozin, Department of Chemistry — CRC in Materials Chemistry and Nanochemistry
  • Nicholas Rule, Department of Psychology — CRC in Social Perception and Cognition
  • Elise Stanley, Department of Physiology and University Health Network — CRC in Cellular Neuroscience

The University of Toronto continues to lead the nation in the Canada Research Chairs program. Thanks to a recent reallocation, its total number of allocated chairs rose to 255. The CRC program reallocates its chairs every two years, dividing them among universities nationwide based on their performance in designated research programs of Canada’s three federal research granting bodies—the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

U of T Canada Research Chair holders and visiting dignitaries, left to right: CRC Julie Lefebvre, CRC Leonardo Salmena; CRC Mary Cheng; MPP Bob Dechert (Mississauga-Erindale); CRC Elizabeth Page-Gould; UTM Principal Deep Saini; UTM Vice-Principal, Research Brian Stewart; , Hon. Ed Holder (Minister of State, Science & Technology); CIHR President Alain Beaudet; Canadian Cancer Society CEO Pamela Fralick; U of T Vice President, Research and Innovation Vivek Goel, CRC Geoffrey Ozin, CRC Lisa Forman; CRC Patrick Gunning; CRC Monica Justice. Photo by Blake Eligh, U of T Mississauga.

U of T Canada Research Chair holders and visiting dignitaries, left to right: CRC Julie Lefebvre, CRC Leonardo Salmena; CRC Mary Cheng; MPP Bob Dechert (Mississauga-Erindale); CRC Elizabeth Page-Gould; UTM Principal Deep Saini; UTM Vice-Principal, Research Brian Stewart; , Hon. Ed Holder (Minister of State, Science & Technology); CIHR President Alain Beaudet; Canadian Cancer Society CEO Pamela Fralick; U of T Vice President, Research and Innovation Vivek Goel, CRC Geoffrey Ozin, CRC Lisa Forman; CRC Patrick Gunning; CRC Monica Justice. Photo by Blake Eligh, U of T Mississauga.