Bells Corners, Canada

Canadian Institutes of Health Research is the major federal agency responsible for funding health research in Canada. It is the successor to the Medical Research Council of Canada. It aims to create new health knowledge, and to translate that knowledge from the research setting into real world applications. The CIHR was created by an Act of Parliament on June 7, 2000; bringing together existing government activities. In 2009-2010, CIHR's budget was just over 1 billion dollars.CIHR is a Departmental Corporation listed in Schedule II of the Financial Administration Act. As an arms length agency of government, it is accountable to Parliament through the Minister of Health.CIHR is managed by the Prime Minister and the Governing Council, who are assisted by various Standing and Advisory Committees. The current appointed president of CIHR is Dr. Alain Beaudet.CIHR consists of 13 "virtual" institutes, each headed by a Scientific Director and assisted by an Institute Advisory Board. They work together to shape a national health research agenda for Canada. The institutes bring together researchers, health professionals and policy-makers from voluntary health organizations, provincial government agencies, international research organizations and industry and patient groups from across the country with a shared interest in improving the health of Canadians.The work of the institutes embraces the four pillars of health research: biomedical; clinical; research respecting health systems and services; and the social, cultural and environmental factors that affect the health of populations.A major challenge for the institutes is to forge relationships across disciplines to stimulate integrative, multifaceted research agendas that respond to society's health priorities while adhering to the highest ethical standards.CIHR supports more than 14,000 researchers and researchers in training as part of the federal government's investment in health research. The peer review process is a vital part of CIHR. Review by panels of peers from the research community ensures proposals approved for funding by CIHR meet international accepted standards of scientific excellence.In 2008 CIHR also organised a series of Café Scientifique events across Canada.CIHR is supplying funding for PubMed Central Canada in partnership with the United States National Library of Medicine and Canada Institute for Scientific and Technical Information .In November 2009, controversy arose over the appointment of a senior executive of Pfizer to CIHR's governing council. Wikipedia.


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News Article | February 28, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

In study, children with a particular genetic variation were 4 times more likely to develop strong attachment to mother after intervention Toronto, Canada / Cape Town, South Africa - A child's genetic make-up can play a large, hidden role in the success of efforts to maximize his or her development, South African research suggests. The study, published February 28 in PLoS Medicine and supported by the Government of Canada through Grand Challenges Canada's Saving Brains program, sheds new light on why some children benefit more than others from interventions and raises complex questions about psychosocial intervention programs in future. In a study led by Professor Mark Tomlinson of Stellenbosch University, the study followed-up an intervention implemented between 1999 and 2003, in which expectant mothers underwent mentoring to improve attachment with their children -- attachment being a measure of a child's psychological security, and predictive of future wellbeing. In the original study, a control group of roughly equal size was composed of expectant mothers who did not receive mentoring. The original study concluded that the intervention had a small-to-moderate effect on mother-child attachment, evaluated once the children reached 18 months of age. The follow-up study, conducted thirteen years after the intervention, re-examined the original attachment results and revealed something surprising: the intervention had in fact worked well for toddlers who had a particular genetic characteristic. Conducted in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Reading, University College London, and Western University, the study re-enrolled and conducted genetic tests on 279 of the original 449 children. 220 children had both genetic and attachment data, enabling the investigators to test whether the original attachment outcomes were influenced by their genes. The researchers factored in whether the child had the short or long form of gene SLC6A4 -- the serotonin transporter gene, which is involved in nerve signalling, and which other studies have linked to anxiety, depression and other conditions. Serotonin is popularly thought to contribute to feelings of well-being and happiness. The attachment of children with the short form of the gene, and whose pregnant mothers were mentored, were almost four times more likely to be securely attached to their mothers at 18 months old (84 percent were secure) than children carrying the short form whose mothers did not receive mentoring (58 percent were secure). Meanwhile, children with the long gene were apparently unaffected by their mother's training or lack thereof: in both cases, the rate of secure attachment was almost identical (70 and 71 percent). Subject to further validation, says Professor Tomlinson, the insight has "important implications for scientists designing and evaluating interventions to benefit as many people as possible in South Africa and worldwide." "Without taking genetics into account, it is possible that other studies have under-estimated the impact of their interventions, as we originally did." Says lead author Dr. Barak Morgan of the University of Cape Town: "The immediate significance of this research is the revelation that in principle, and probably in many cases in practice too, the effectiveness of interventions has been mis-measured -- under-estimated for genetically susceptible individuals and over-estimated for those who are genetically less susceptible. But even more worrying is the implication that the negative consequences of not receiving an intervention also differ by genotype." "This is an enormously important insight because, in this case, the subgroup with the short form of the SLC6A4 gene is also the one with the most to lose if not helped." "Individuals with the long form of the gene, on the other hand, appear less sensitive and derived little benefit from the same intervention, and little detriment from not getting it." Adds Professor Tomlinson: "In the original study, we did not see such a big impact from this intervention because only those with the short gene improved, and this improvement was 'diluted' by the large number of children with the long gene who did not improve." The researchers caution that, among other limitations, this study involved a relatively small sample and only measured one gene and one outcome (attachment). Dr. Morgan stressed: "We are certainly not saying that only some people should receive the intervention -- those who are 'susceptible' to improving from it. There is little scientific justification for this. For example, many children with the non-susceptible long genotype of the SLC6A4 gene may carry the susceptible form of another gene which renders them much more likely to benefit from the same intervention but for a different but equally important outcome. "Going forward, the implications are therefore two-fold. Firstly, measuring genetic differences allows for proper assessment of the effectiveness or lack of effectiveness of an intervention for a particular outcome in different individuals. Secondly, this information can then be used to find out how to intervene effectively for all -- to guide what might be done to improve outcomes for a non-responsive gene-intervention interaction while continuing to optimise outcomes for the responsive one." Says Dr. Karlee Silver, Vice President Programs of Grand Challenges Canada: "This work is fundamentally about better understanding the impact of interventions which is an important step forward to creating a world where every child can survive and thrive." Says Dr. Peter A. Singer, Chief Executive Officer of Grand Challenges Canada: "This is a startling finding that changes the way I think about child development. Why is it important? Because child development is the ladder of social mobility used to climb out of the hole of inequity by millions of children around the world." For more information, visit grandchallenges.ca and look for us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn. Grand Challenges Canada is dedicated to supporting Bold Ideas with Big Impact® in global health. We are funded by the Government of Canada and we support innovators in low- and middle-income countries and Canada. The bold ideas we support integrate science and technology, social and business innovation - we call this Integrated Innovation®. Grand Challenges Canada focuses on innovator-defined challenges through its Stars in Global Health program and on targeted challenges in its Saving Lives at Birth, Saving Brains and Global Mental Health programs. Grand Challenges Canada works closely with Canada's International Development Research Centre (IDRC), the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and Global Affairs Canada to catalyze scale, sustainability and impact. We have a determined focus on results, and on saving and improving lives. http://www. Saving Brains is a partnership of Grand Challenges Canada, Aga Khan Foundation Canada, the Bernard van Leer Foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, The ELMA Foundation, Grand Challenges Ethiopia, the Maria Cecilia Souto Vidigal Foundation, the Palix Foundation, UBS Optimus Foundation and World Vision Canada. It seeks and supports bold ideas for products, services and implementation models that protect and nurture early brain development relevant to poor, marginalized populations in low- or middle-income countries. http://www.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: H2020 | Program: CSA | Phase: SC1-HCO-04-2016 | Award Amount: 2.23M | Year: 2017

EXEDRA, an EXpansion of the European Joint Programming Initiative on Drug Resistance to Antimicrobials, will build on, and further support the structure and activities of JPIAMR to address the two major objectives of HCO-04-2016 topic: extending JPIAMR globally and creating a long-term sustainable structure for future expansion and governance which will coordinate national funding and collaborative actions supporting the implementation of the JPIAMR Strategic Research Agenda (SRA). JPIAMR EXEDRA will be the second Coordinated Support Action (CSA) for this Joint Programming Initiative (JPI) and essentially build on the work of the first CSA (JPIAMR), which ended February 2016. It will provide a strong support structure for the JPIAMR during the forthcoming implementation and expansion phaseby maintaining a continuity between the objectives, tasks and Work Packages of EXEDRA and JPIAMR. Support facilitated by the CSA EXEDRA will ensure that the ethos of joint programming in the area antimicrobial drug resistance becoming embedded within JPIAMR members research and innovation policies and programmes. EXEDRA will have the following work packages: WP1 Management and coordination; WP2 Strategy, governance, and long term sustainability; WP3 Internationalisation and capacity extension; WP4 Alignment with policy and industry; WP5 Research alignment; WP6 Communication, dissemination, and advocacy. EXEDRA will significantly contribute to the delivery of the JPIAMR SRA combined with the JPI-EC-AMR effort and the experience of the JPIAMR members. EXEDRA (and the JPIAMR) will support transnational cooperation to to pool substantial and long-term research funding and serve to complement other initiatives in the AMR area. It will create momentum with the potential to move the frontiers forward and offer new opportunities for industry, new tools for society, and new evidence-based data for policy makers, which will inspire other necessary initiatives.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: H2020 | Program: CSA | Phase: SC1-HCO-06-2016 | Award Amount: 2.04M | Year: 2016

In order to strengthen the sustainability and resilience of health services and systems a unique consortium of governmental and funding organizations plus research institutes, has expressed the ambition to systematically learn from the organisation of care in other settings. Overall objective of TO-REACH is to provide groundwork for an ERA-NET that will contribute to the resilience, effectiveness, equity, accessibility and comprehensiveness of health services and systems. We will do so along two work streams: A) We will develop a research program on cross-border learning from good (or even innovative) models of care and the conditions needed to transfer them to other settings for implementation. It could refer to anywhere in the care chain depending on the priorities as identified in a Strategic Research Agenda (SRA) within this project. Conceptual, methodological and empirical advancement will be achieved through 4 meta-questions that will instruct research under the ERA-NET, linking to what counts as good models of care, what are the conditions required for transferability, what are the conditions for up-scaling, and how do they contribute to the performance of health care organisations and systems. B) We will build a platform for funding organizations that allows for collaboration and coordination in the project and projected ERA-NET. This will synchronize priorities and activities, hence improving the quality and applicability of research with a focus on the topic areas as described under A. TO-REACH will pursue five specific objectives: Mapping health system challenges and priorities by synthesizing different materials and stakeholder inputs; Developing a framework and providing a knowledge synthesis on the above-mentioned meta-questions; Establishing sustainable cooperation of research funding bodies and links with other initiatives; Developing a SRA through agenda setting at European and Member State level; Disseminating the results of TO-REACH.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: H2020 | Program: ERA-NET-Cofund | Phase: ISIB-12f-2015 | Award Amount: 15.59M | Year: 2016

ERA-HDHL is a proposal of ERA-NET Cofund in the field of nutrition and health to support the Joint Programme Initiative Healthy Diet for a Healthy Life (JPI HDHL). Nowadays, there is a high burden of non-communicable diseases due to unhealthy diet and lifestyle patterns. The 24 members of the JPI HDHL are working together to develop means to (1) motivate people to adopt healthier lifestyles including dietary choices and physical activity, (2) develop and produce healthy, high-quality, safe and sustainable foods and (3) prevent diet-related diseases. Between 2012 and 2015, JPI HDHL had implemented 7 JFAs with 40 M funds from national funding. The JPI HDHL is now set for further enhancement in tight coordination with the EC through the ERA-NET Cofund instrument. ERA-HDHL will provide a robust platform for implementing joint funding actions (JFAs) that address the needs identified in the JPI HDHL strategic research agenda and strengthen the research funding activities of JPI HDHL. An EC cofunded call on the identification and validation of biomarkers in nutrition and health will be implemented. For this foreseen action, the member countries of the JPI HDHL have doubled their financial commitment comparing to previous JFA implemented on a similar topic. Moreover, ERA-HDHL will launch at least 3 additional JFAs in line to fulfil the JPI HDHL objectives.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-CA | Phase: SiS.2013.2.1.1-2 | Award Amount: 1.93M | Year: 2013

Despite more and more solid indicators, extensive research, policy initiatives at European and national levels, and wide awareness-raising on the issues linked to gender and science, the European Research Area is still confronted to structural obstacles within its research institutions which prevent the ERA from reaching its objectives on the full participation of women in research and innovation at all levels (while women comprise >50% of PhD graduates, they still occupy less than 20% of Grade A positions) as well as to a lack of integration of the gender dimension in research contents and programmes which hinders their quality and potential for innovation. With the aim of collectively addressing these issues, the GENDER-NET ERA-NET proposal brings together national ministries and research programme owners and managers from 11 countries with synergistic expertise in gender issues in research. Partners will join forces to: 1) map and analyse existing national/regional programmes and initiatives aimed at a) promoting gender equality in research and higher education institutions through structural change, b) gendering research contents; 2) identify priority activities for strategic transnational implementation; 3) design and optimise transnational transferability; 4) implement these joint activities. GENDER-NET thus consists of 4 work packages which build on one another to propose a pilot transnational research policy initiative which will allow for a global vision of the best practices and conditions for success, innovative assessment and knowledge-transfer methods, as well as concrete engagement of partners in the implementation of joint activities, thus breaking new ground at EU-level and contributing to the realisation of ERA. Expanding outcomes by relying on the shared expertise and insight gained by partners, widening the consortium to reach a critical mass of institutions and stakeholders, and disseminating results, will be ongoing concerns of this ERA-NET.


J-AGEII, the Coordination Action for implementation and alignment activities of the Joint Programming Initiative (JPI) More Years Better Lives the Challenges and Opportunities of Demographic Change, will support and foster the overall management of the JPI, update the Strategic Research Agenda and support implementation through joint activities between Member States. Furthermore, the work plan will include dissemination and information exchange with scientific and societal stakeholders, policy makers and research funders as well as an evaluation and monitoring exercise. Ultimately, the project and the JPI seek to stimulate the alignment of relevant national programmes and EU initiatives, strengthen the base of multi-disciplinary and holistic ageing research in Europe and to provide scientific evidence for policy responses to demographic change.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-CA | Phase: HEALTH.2011.2.2.1-5 | Award Amount: 2.21M | Year: 2012

Research into the human brain and its diseases is one of the key challenges of our century, since among the many diseases affecting health, disorders of the brain are major causes for impaired quality of life. Despite some progress in understanding the molecular mechanisms of the various neurological and psychiatric disorders, research is far from being able to offer solutions how to conquer them and the development of curative treatments or prevention strategies has not been very successful. Thus, a concerted effort of research groups and the organisations funding them is needed to reach the long term goal of curing patients with disorders of the brain and nervous system and helping their relatives. Due to the importance of research into the area of brain diseases, a variety of independent national and regional funding programmes exist in most countries. This contributes to fragmentation of available financial resources, to a lack of synergistic approaches and to duplication of efforts in the funding bodies. The proposed ERA-NET NEURON II aims to coordinate national and regional programmes for disease-related neuroscience research in 21 participant funding organisations across 16 European Member States, Candidate and Associated countries, and Canada. Extending the collaboration beyond the European Research Area into North America reflects the global dimension of brain research and adds even more to the effectiveness of NEURON. The ERA-NET will serve as a platform of programme opening for participating funding agencies and ministries and coordinate high quality research by funding research groups originating from the NEURON II partner countries. NEURON II will build on the achievements of its predecessor ERA-NET NEURON. It will launch a series of transnational joint calls for proposals and address new ambitious goals by developing strategies towards a self-sustainable network with a long term perspective.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: H2020 | Program: ERA-NET-Cofund | Phase: HCO-10-2014 | Award Amount: 23.29M | Year: 2014

Rare diseases (RD) are diseases that affect not more than 5 per 10 000 persons (according to the EU definition). 7000 distinct rare diseases exist, affecting between 6% and 8% of the population (about 30 million EU citizens). The lack of specific health policies for rare diseases and the scarcity of the expertise, translate into delayed diagnosis, few medicinal products and difficult access to care. That is why rare diseases are a prime example of a research area that strongly profits from coordination on a European scale. At present only few European countries fund research on rare diseases through specific dedicated programmes. Therefore, the funding of transnational collaborative research is the most effective joint activity to enhance the cooperation between scientists working on rare diseases in Europe and beyond. The E-Rare consortium was built to link responsible funding bodies that combine the scarce resources and fund rare disease research via Joint Transnational Calls (JTCs). The current E-Rare-3 project proposal will extend and strengthen the transnational cooperation by building on the experience and results of the previous E-Rare-1&2 programmes. The consortium comprises 26 institutions from 17 European, Associated and non-European countries. Its international dimension will be directly translated into close collaboration with IRDiRC and other relevant European and international initiatives. IRDiRC guidelines and policies will be implemented in the four JTCs and representatives of the IRDiRC Scientific Committees will be invited to join the Advisory Board of E-Rare-3. Members of the EUCERD group will be involved in identifying rare disease research needs. Patients organizations from Europe (represented by EURORDIS) and beyond will be invited as a key partner towards collaborative efforts for research promotion and funding. The collaboration with European Research Infrastructures will be consolidated to enhance efficient and participative research.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: H2020 | Program: ERA-NET-Cofund | Phase: HCO-07-2014 | Award Amount: 30.95M | Year: 2015

Over 12 million people in Europe suffer from neurodegenerative diseases (ND), yet treatments that prevent or stop the progression of neurodegeneration are still lacking. Tackling this grand challenge requires enhanced coordination of national efforts to accelerate discovery. Such synergies have been created among 28 countries in the pilot EU JPI on Neurodegenerative Disease Research (JPND). JPND has a long standing experience in collaborative action with 75 million of additional national funds being successfully mobilized between 2011 and 2014 to support transnational research programs. The JPND Research Strategy is now ripe for further enhancement in tight coordination with the EC through an ERA-Net Cofund instrument JPco-fuND with an unprecedented commitment of 30 million of national funds associated to a highly incentivizing EC top-up fund. Among the most burning questions, three priority topics have emerged through a consultative process between researchers and JPND members in order to unlock several major issues within ND research: the identification of genetic, epigenetic and environmental risk and protective factors, the development and maintenance of longitudinal cohorts, the creation of advanced experimental models. These are key questions of equal priority to increase understanding of ND mechanisms that will be addressed through a common joint transnational call allowing a significant acceleration of the execution of the JPND research strategy. Moreover, to expand the impact of JPco-fuND, JPND will continue to implement other actions without EU co-funding such as aligning national research strategies, making databases more accessible and interoperable, developing enabling capacities such as supportive infrastructure and platforms, capacity building, education and training. These actions are required in parallel to achieve the highest impact for the patients, their carers and for society as whole and address this grand challenge in the coming years.


News Article | February 15, 2017
Site: www.eurekalert.org

People living in areas with winter snow may need to think twice before shovelling after a heavy snowstorm. According to a new study, snowfall is associated with a higher risk of hospital admission for heart attack, or myocardial infarction (MI), after heavy snowfall, especially in men. The study, published in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal), found associations with larger snowfalls and longer duration of snow. "We suspect that shovelling was the main mechanism linking snowfall with MI," writes Dr. Nathalie Auger, University of Montreal Hospital Research Centre, Montréal, Quebec, with coauthors. "Men are potentially more likely than women to shovel, particularly after heavy snowfalls. Snow shovelling is a demanding cardiovascular exercise requiring more than 75% of the maximum heart rate, particularly with heavy loads." A team of researchers looked at data from two separate administrative databases on 128 073 individual hospital admissions and 68 155 deaths from heart attack (MI) in the province of Quebec between 1981 and 2014. They restricted analysis to months in which snow falls, November to April, and obtained detailed weather information from Environment Canada for each health region included in the study. About 60% of hospital admissions and deaths due to MI were in men. The day after a snowfall had the strongest association, with about 1/3 of MIs occurring then, and the association was even stronger after snowfalls lasting 2 to 3 days. These risks were elevated regardless of age, cardiovascular risk factors or other health conditions. However, the effects were not seen in women. "Quantity of snowfall was associated with an increased likelihood of hospital admission or death due to MI the following day among men," write the authors. "The association between snowfall and MI was stronger among men, and weaker or absent among women." The authors point out several limitations to the paper, including lack of data on sex-specific shovelling habits, size of areas shovelled or whether snow removal was manual or with a snow blower. "Although these are potentially important considerations, the hypothesis that shovelling is associated with an increased risk of MI events among men remains plausible," they write. The authors urge public awareness campaigns to educate people about the risk of heart attack after a snowfall and that they may need to avoid this activity depending on health status. In a related commentary, Dr. David Alter, Toronto Rehabilitation Institute and the University of Toronto, writes the "findings add weight to our understanding that the act of snow shovelling in cold temperatures sets the stage for an eco-biological-behavioural 'perfect storm,' particularly among those physically deconditioned who have or who are at risk of heart disease." The research study was conducted by researchers from University of Montreal Hospital Research Centre; School of Public Health, University of Montreal, Montréal, Quebec; and the British Columbia Centre for Disease Control, Vancouver, BC. It was funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and Fonds de recherche du Québec-Santé.

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