Stem Cell Network announces round one funding results

Canada’s Stem Cell Network Investing in Advanced Research on Type 1 Diabetes, Heart Diseases & Vision Loss.
Thirteen new projects & clinical trials will engage 200 researchers and trainees across the country.

On March 2, the Stem Cell Network (SCN) announced $6.9 million in funding for innovative stem cell and regenerative medicine research that will help advance discoveries into better health and economic growth for Canadians.

SCN will support a total of nine research projects and four clinical trials from across Canada, in areas such as type 1 diabetes, heart disease, severe burns and vision loss. This funding is being matched with partner support valued at more than $11 million. The investment will advance high-impact projects and collaborations among 108 scientists and more than 90 trainees across the country.

SCN is flowing funds through four strategic translational research programs and one targeted award:

  • The Advancing Clinical Trials program will provide $2.6M for four early stage clinical trials with high translational potential. This program focuses on novel cellular or stem cell-related therapeutic approaches to tissue repair and regeneration for specific diseases. The clinical trials within this program will bring forward innovative therapies or technologies for leukemia, severe burns, vision loss and lung diseases caused by complications of severe prematurity.
  • The Accelerating Clinical Translation program will provide $2.4M for four national, multi-disciplinary research projects that are moving toward the clinic. Research supported from this competition will address challenges in heart regulation and regeneration and the delivery of insulin-producing cells for type 1 diabetes.
  • The Fueling Biotechnology Partnerships program will provide $1.5M for three academic partnerships with emerging Canadian regenerative medicine biotech companies who are working to drive an innovative stem cell-based technology or therapy into the clinic or market. These partnerships seek to advance research in the areas of vision loss, type 1 diabetes and acute liver failure. The partnered companies on these projects are: Aspect Biosystems, Morphocell Technologies and StemAxon.
  • The Translation & Society program will provide $75K for one project to develop an ethical and legal framework to address direct-to-participant patient recruitment.
  • The Disruptive Research award will provide $330K for one project investigating a novel approach to stimulate muscle stem cell function and reduce progression of muscular dystrophy.


A full list of funded research projects can be found here.

Congratulations to the several MRM Members involved in these projects, such as Dr. Corinne Hoesli, Dr. Steven Paraskevas, Dr. Richard Leask and Professor Bartha Knoppers.


The Stem Cell Network launched the second round of its national research funding competition for the 2019-22 period this past January. This competition is comprised of three translational research programs and SCN’s new Innovation Research Program for early career investigators.

The four funding programs are:

  • The Accelerating Clinical Translation Program
  • The Fueling Biotechnology Partnerships Program
  • The Innovation Research Program for Early Career Investigators
  • The Translation and Society Team Awards

Application Deadline: April 1, 2020

Details on the funding programs as well as guidelines and application forms can be found on SCN’s Funding Opportunities page.


Source: SCN news release.

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