Six world-class research teams to investigate overcoming therapeutic resistance in high fatality cancers

Monday, October 30, 2017 Research News
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OTTAWA, Oct. 30, 2017 /CNW/ - The Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the International Development Research Centre

(IDRC), the Azrieli Foundation and the Israel Science Foundation (ISF) are pleased to announce the recipients of the Joint Canada-Israel Health Research Program's 3rd call for proposals. These world-class research teams will direct their focus
towards new frontiers in cancer research.

The six winning teams were selected from among 56 proposals and will receive funding totaling up to C$ 7 million over the next three years.

Two teams will develop strategies to improve the effectiveness of cancer immunotherapy against leukemia and lung cancer. Four other teams will use advanced genomics and protein engineering techniques to elucidate basic molecular mechanisms associated with tumor development, progression and resistance to therapy in pancreatic, breast, renal and hepatic cancer. 

Research results are expected to enable breakthrough discoveries that can ultimately lead to new or improved therapies against high fatality cancers that affect millions of people. 

The research teams will integrate researchers from India, China, Brazil, Argentina and Turkey to further the knowledge base and scientific capacity in low and middle income countries. As collaborators or trainees, these researchers will contribute to, and benefit from, their involvement in the program with the overall aim of strengthening research capacity in their countries, promoting research excellence, and building long-lasting international scientific relationships.

Of note, the program will support two more calls in 2017 and 2018:

  • 4th call– Neurobiology (to be launched in November 2017)
  • 5th call– Metabolism (to be launched in November 2018)

Please consult the backgrounder for a list of the selected projects and more information on the program.

Joint Canada-Israel Health Research Program


The Joint Canada-Israel Health Research Program is a seven-year, CA$35 million partnership between the Azrieli Foundation, Canada's International Development Research Centre, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, and the Israel Science Foundation that draws on the scientific strengths of Canadian and Israeli researchers in the broad field of biomedicine. It is expected to fund up to 30 collaborative projects involving researchers from Canada and Israel, as well as from low- and middle-income countries.

Selected Cancer Research Projects

In October 2016, the partners launched the 3rd call for research proposals in the field of cancer. The proposals were evaluated by an international committee, Chaired by Prof. Edward Harlow from the Department of Biological Chemistry & Molecular Pharmacology, Harvard Medical School. Six world-class teams were selected from among 56 proposals and will receive funding totaling up to C$ 7 million over the next three years.

The following list of projects is in alphabetical order according to the Canadian Nominated Principal Investigators' last names.

  • NOTCH as master regulator of breast cancer subtype and intratumoral heterogeneityResearchers: Sean Egan (Hospital for Sick Children), Ittai Ben-Porath (Hebrew University of Jerusalem), Anaapoorni Rangarajan (Indian Institute of Science)
  • The role of IL6 in liver cancer linked to metabolic liver diseaseResearchers: Jennifer Estall (IRCM), Eitan Galun (Hadassah Medical Centre), Mehmet Ozturk (Bilkent University, Turkey)
  • Targeting senescence cells in pancreatic cancerResearchers: Gerardo Ferbeyre (Université de Montréal), Valery Krizhanovsky (Weizmann Institute of Science), Paloma Kalegari (Brazil)
  • Systematic and comprehensive analysis of mutant p53 proteins in lung cancer in vitro and in vivoResearchers: Daniel Schramek (Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute), Moshe Oren (Weizmann Institute of Science), Patricia Aston-Prola (Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil) and Nicolas González Foutel (Universidad San Martin, Argentina)
  • Understanding the role of type 1 interferon in resistance to cancer immunotherapyResearchers: David Spaner (Sunnybrook Research Institute - University of Toronto); Gideon Schreiber (Weizmann Institute of Science); You-Jun Li (Jilin University - China)
  • The role of epitranscriptome and translational dysregulation in cancerResearchers: Ivan Topisirovic (McGill University), Dan Dominissini (Sheba Medical Center), Glaucia Noeli Maroso Hajj (AC Camargo Cancer Centre, Brazil)

Learn more about the Israel Science Foundation, the Azrieli Foundation, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and the International Development Research Centre.


SOURCE Canadian Institutes of Health Research


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