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Federal Funding Strengthens Life Sciences Sector in British Columbia

Life SciencesToday, Andrew Saxton, Parliamentary Secretary to the President of the Treasury Board and Member of Parliament for North Vancouver, on behalf of the Honourable Lynne Yelich, Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification, announced federal support for LifeSciences British Columbia to strengthen its industry development capabilities.

“Life sciences is one of the key contributors to the global economy and our Government’s support has been instrumental in the development of this sector in Canada,” said Mr. Saxton. “Today’s investment will allow LifeSciences BC to further diversify and improve this vital sector of the British Columbia economy.”

ImmunoPrecise to service the quantitative proteomics field

ImmunoPrecise has secured funding from the Canadian National Research Council (NRC) to explore the use of novel and highly specific monoclonal antibodies coupled with mass spectrometry for absolute quantitation of proteins from biological samples. The research will span close to one and a half years and total $320,000.00 with a contribution of over $200,000.00 from NRC’s Industrial Research Assistance Program.

Major breast cancer breakthrough announced at BC Cancer Agency

BC Cancer Agency

For the first time in history, BC Cancer Agency scientists have decoded all of the three billion letters in the DNA sequence of a metastatic lobular breast cancer tumour and have found all of the mutations, or “spelling” mistakes that caused the cancer to spread.The landmark study, which will be published tomorrow as the cover story in the prestigious international science journal Nature, helps unlock the secrets of how cancer begins and spreads, thus pointing the way to the development of new breast cancer treatment targets and therapies.

“I never thought I would see this in my lifetime,” said Dr. Samuel Aparicio, head of the breast cancer research program at the BC Cancer Agency. “This is a watershed event in our ability to understand the causes of breast cancer and to develop personalized medicines for our patients. The number of doors that can now be opened to future research is considerable.”

Victoria News Reports: High-tech monitors track methane on seabed

Neptune Canada

Trawlers stumbled upon it accidentally off Vancouver Island’s coast.

Dredged up from the sea floor, half a ton of yellowish ice filled their nets, taking both the fishing and scientific community by surprise.

“It was just astonishing,” said Ross Chapman, the lead investigator in a project to study the mysterious mounds of ice.

Some five years later, he and his team of international engineers, geophysicists, ecologists and biologists have high-tech surveillance equipment trained on the frozen gas hydrates (comprised mainly of methane) 24/7.

Chapman’s proposal — to study where and why the methane ice forms and how long it lasts — was one of a handful selected by Victoria-based NEPTUNE Canada, dedicated to researching the ocean depths.

B.C. Commits to Work Globally to Fight Climate Change

Arnold Schwarzenegger meets Gordon Campbell

Premier Gordon Campbell signed the 2009 Governors’ Climate Summit Declaration on behalf of British Columbia, committing the Province to work co-operatively with all levels of government around the world to combat climate change.

“Climate change is a challenge on an unprecedented scale and calls for an unprecedented level of co-operation between governments at all levels – national, state, provincial and municipal,” said Premier Campbell. “This declaration reaffirms our commitment to work collaboratively with other jurisdictions around the world, even as we take steps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions within our own province. I want to thank California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and all host governors for giving a voice to sub-national governments on this important issue.”

NRC Report Highlights Park Best Practices

AURP

The National Research Council of the National Academies today released the Academies’ new report, Understanding Research, Science and Technology Parks: Global Best Practices, at the U.S. Capital. Senator Mark Pryor, D-AR gave opening remarks.

Senator Pryor is sponsoring Senate Bill 583, which provides support for the development and construction of research and science parks to promote the clustering of innovation through high technology activities. Co-sponsors of S. 583 are Senator Lamar Alexander, R-TN, Senator Richard J. Durbin, D-IL, Senator Tim Johnson, D-SD, and Senator Olympia J. Snowe, R-ME.

AXYS Receives $1.8 Million Loan

AXYS Technolgies

A Sidney company has received a loan of $1.8 million from the federal government to work on a high-tech project that will collect information through buoys and surveillance equipment in ports.

The “repayable investment” in AXYS Technologies, which comes from $200 million in federal funding for the Strategic Aerospace and Defense Initiative, was announced Wednesday.

The AXYS cash injection “builds on Canadian expertise in security technologies while helping the company to play a vital role in the growing security market,” said Abbotsford MP Ed Fast, making the announcement for Industry Canada.

New Facility to Train Hundreds More Pharmacists for BC

Faculty of Pharmaceutical Science

The Province is investing $86.4 million in a new state-of-the-art building at the University of British Columbia that will house the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Science, enabling the expansion of the undergraduate program by 72 students, and helping address the shortage of pharmacists in B.C., announced Premier Gordon Campbell today.

“This facility will ensure increased numbers of pharmacists are able to train in B.C. to help meet the health care needs of British Columbians now and for the future,” said Premier Campbell. “This expansion of pharmacist training will build on the steps we’ve taken over the past eight years to expand training of medical professionals here in B.C., including doubling the number of doctor training spaces and nurse training spaces at our province’s universities and colleges.”

The new Pharmaceutical Sciences Building will feature almost two hectares of floor space containing research and teaching laboratories, office space and classrooms, as well as additional space to be leased out to tenants operating in the drug research, development and commercialization field. The total project cost is $133.3 million, and it will create approximately 850 construction jobs.

Victoria Shipyards Wins Coast Guard Contract

Victoria Shipyard

The government of Canada has awarded a $20 million contract to Victoria Shipyards, for construction of five small search and rescue vessels for the coast guard. The boats will be about 15 meters, 47 feet, in length and are described as ‘motor lifeboats’.

Two will be stationed on the west coast, with the remaining three each in Ontario, Quebec, and Nova Scotia. Delivery is to be in March of 2011.

Camosun College Hires New Dean of School of Business

A new dean at Camosun College rings in the new school year.

“I am pleased to announce that Joan Yates accepted the position of Dean of our School of Business, effective August 1, 2009,” says Baldev Pooni, Vice President, Education and Student Services.

Yates holds a Master of Education from the University of Calgary in Adult and Workplace Learning, and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Regina, and also has a professional designation from the Canadian Public Relations Society.

Yates has been very involved in educational development at Camosun and across Canada. In addition to faculty responsibilities at Camosun, she has taught marketing, corporate social responsibility, public relations and management courses at the university and college level.

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