Ontario Research Funds announced for Western

Friday, December 13, 2013

London North Centre MPP Deb Matthews announced an investment of over $7.4 million from the Ontario Research Fund - Research Infrastructure program to assist in research projects at Western University and Lawson Health Research Institute, in December at Robarts Research Institute.

The funding goes to five research teams at Western and one at Lawson. This support provides research teams with the tools they need to be successful and conduct ground-breaking research in different areas including the development and testing of medical devices, audiology, imaging for biomechanics and clinical orthopaedics research, movement ecology of free-living birds, neuroimaging research and imaging research in oncology and cardiology.

ORFRI provides grants to Ontario universities and research hospitals to help obtain equipment and resources for their research labs. The fund helps researchers in a range of disciplines generate new ideas, stimulate technology development and support the growth of strong regional economies.

"I'm proud that our government is supporting innovative scientific research in London. These grants will give researchers the tools they need to perform cutting edge research that will help improve health care services, develop new technology, create a cleaner environment and advance the skills, knowledge and creativity of Ontarians," said Deb Matthews MPP, London North Centre.

Dr. Amit Chakma, President, Western University thanked the Minister saying "We are grateful the province continues to fund research that has impact both within Ontario and abroad. By supporting our researchers, the provincial government helps improve health care, bolster economic prosperity and ensure Ontario's social and cultural institutions thrive."

The six projects being funded include ones led by Robarts scientists Ravi Menon, David Holdsworth (with co-investigators Tom Jenkyn and Trevor Birmingham), Blaine Chronik and Ting-Yim Lee (through Lawson Health Research Insitute).

As well, Prudence Allen receives funding for the National Centre for Audiology for hearing research and Christopher Guglielmo and Scott MacDougall-Skackleton for research into the migration of birds to advance sound policies on land use and green energy initiatives.

After the announcement , Holdsworth showed the Minister and media the new 3D printer which uses medical-grade metal, the only one of its kind at a Canadian university. The printer was purchased with ORF funds from 2012. Holdsworth demonstrated how the printer can be used to advance the development of artificial joints, a topic that captured the imagination of the Health Minister.