Trudeau Liberals pledge $150M toward big-data cancer research initiative

$150 million in federal funding over five years will help build a network of top-tier cancer researchers

Months after first promising money to a cancer research network bearing Terry Fox’s name, the federal health minister touted the spending at an event Thursday.

The infusion $150 million in federal funding over five years will help build a network of top-tier cancer researchers whose aim will be to advance the science of individually customized cancer treatments, known as precision cancer medicine.

This emerging treatment uses big data, new technologies like genomics, and artificial intelligence to design individual treatments for patients based on the biological and genetic makeup of their cancer.

The federal funding to the Terry Fox Research Institute, first unveiled in this year’s federal budget, will be matched by the network’s partners to develop the $300-million cancer research initiative called the Marathon of Hope Cancer Centre Network.

Federal Health Minister Ginette Petitpas Taylor highlighted the five-year federal spending at an event in Moncton on Thursday.

READ MORE: Canadian icon and hero Terry Fox died 38 years ago today

In a statement, she said the government is “committed to supporting innovative and collaborative cancer research to improve health outcomes for Canadians who are living with, or may one day be affected by, cancer.”

She called the initiative and its partners “a source of hope to cancer patients and their families and friends.”

A consortium of five regional cancer care and research centres from Atlantic Canada to British Columbia are expected to participate in the initiative.

Although it is designed to help individualize treatment, precision medicine requires vast amounts of data — specifically the genetic information of hundreds of thousands of people — to provide researchers with the tools and knowledge to determine which treatment will deliver the best outcomes.

Researchers expect to build a high-quality, shareable dataset of 15,000 cancer cases by 2023 as part of their work.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

UPDATE: Highway 4 reopens after police incident near Port Alberni

Highway between Port Alberni and the West Coast was briefly closed in both directions

Tofino restaurateur pays landlord’s generosity forward to Hospital Foundation

Coronavirus pandemic cancels foundation’s largest annual fundraiser

Surfrider Pacific Rim: Celebrating SonBird’s dedication to the Coast

West Coast recycling centre continues to serve thanks to an open-air depot and new regulations.

Pacific Rim National Park Reserve issues wolf advisory

Frequent sightings reported around Long Beach area.

If Trudeau won’t stand up to Trump, how will regular people: Singh

Trudeau did not directly answer a question about Trump’s actions amid protests

Search and rescue crews help locate 62-year-old Nanoose Bay mountain biker

RCMP: Man got lost on trail and did right thing by calling for assistance

B.C. ranchers, lodge operators say Indigenous land title shuts them out

Tsilhqot’in jurisdiction affects grazing, access to private property

As two B.C. offices see outbreaks, Dr. Henry warns tests don’t replace other measures

Physical distancing, PPE and sanitizing remain key to reduce COVID-19 spread

Greater Victoria drive-thru window smashed after man receives burger without mustard

Greater Victoria Wendy’s staff call police after man allegedly rips Plexiglas barrier off window

Murder charge upgraded in George Floyd case, 3 other cops charged

Floyd’s family and protesters have repeatedly called for criminal charges against all four officers

Friendly Cove and Kyuquot will remain closed until further notice

Transition of other B.C. communities will be monitored before a decision to ease restrictions

Racist incident shocks Vancouver Island First Nation

Port Alberni RCMP investigating after video shows truck wheeling through Tseshaht territory

Gold River organizes a shop local initiative to creatively boost economy

Local purchases can earn shoppers $200 gift certificates to be spent on businesses within Gold River

Most Read