Leading the way in innovation

Volume 7, Number 1

THREE McGILL UNIVERSITY RESEARCHERS ARE THE LATEST RECIPIENTS OF CLOSE TO $11 MILLION IN LEADING EDGE FUND AWARDS from the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI). The awards, matched by contributions made by the government of Quebec, will subsidize investment in state-of-the-art equipment that will be available to researchers across the city, province and country, fostering better understanding of nanotechnology, biomolecules and atomic cellular structure.

Physics professor PETER GRÜTTER pursues research in nanoscience — examining and manipulating miniscule “nano objects” such as single electrons, molecules or neuronal synapses. Grütter’s $4.5-million CFI award allows him to outfit his research facility with cutting edge nanotools and to train new students in research techniques that set the international standard for nanoscale applications in telecommunications, medicine and computing.

KALLE GEHRING, a professor in the Department of Biochemistry, will receive $4.8 million for a joint project with Université de Montréal to promote research that looks more closely at biomolecules and their role in various diseases, from neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s to the growing conundrum of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in infectious diseases. The fund will also support the purchase of microscopes and robotics for examining and making protein crystals.

Another $1.5-million award will support the purchase of an advanced electron microscope and lab equipment for dentistry professor MARC McKEE’s research into cellular ultrastructures and their role in disease diagnoses, tissue repair and regeneration. These instruments are unique in Canada and can examine and manipulate molecules at -140 degrees Celsius as well as in various states.

The Canada Foundation for Innovation Leading Edge Fund invests in world-class infrastructure projects and provides support to explore promising new research directions.

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