Community News August 2020

UBC scientists sequencing genomes of Canadians with Covid-19

Scientists across Canada are collaborating on genomics-based research to find solutions to COVID-19. One way is through the Canadian COVID Genomics Network (CanCOGeN)—a new initiative launched by Genome Canada and backed by $40 million in federal funding. 

UBC professors Terry Snutch and Steven Jones are heavily involved. Snutch, a professor in UBC’s Michael Smith Laboratories and Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health, is leading the $20 million COVID-19 genome sequencing component of the initiative, called CanCOGeN-VirusSeq. Meanwhile, Jones, who is co-director and head of bioinformatics at Canada’s BC Michael Smith Genome Sciences Centre (GSC) at BC Cancer, is leading the B.C. branch of the CanCOGeN-HostSeq team to sequence the genomes of 10,000 Canadians who have tested positive for COVID-19—an initiative supported by another $20 million investment from the federal government. Hear the latest on their work in this Q&A with Terry Snutch and Steven Jones.

Start it up! Unique entrepreneurial programs at UBC accepting applications

Entrepreneurship@UBC is currently accepting applications for their Lab2Launch and CORE venture building streams. These unique programs are eligible to UBC students, faculty, staff and alumni. We see a number of graduate school students and alumni apply each year. 

The Lab2Launch venture building stream is for UBC researchers and scientists who are focused on the development of a scientific or technological innovation which is unique, proprietary and difficult to reproduce. The program provides industry expertise, practical business training and deep mentorship to develop discoveries into viable ventures.

The CORE stream works with entrepreneurs who are building solutions founded in tech and innovation, helping them to develop their start-up through practical business training.

The program helps validate and shape the potential venture, working with seasoned industry instructors, experts and mentors to catapult ventures into a scalable companies. The CORE stream is grounded in proven methodologies that hundreds of UBC entrepreneurs have leveraged to build ventures with unique and sustainable advantages in their markets. 

Read more at Entrepreneurship@UBC

Congratulations to Friedman Award Scholars in Health

Congratulations to twelve UBC graduate students who were awarded the Friedman Award for Scholars in Health. Winners came from a variety of programs, including Chemical and Biological Engineering, Medical Genetics and Public Health. The award supports learning and research opportunities for graduate students or medical residents working in the broad area of health, to bring new perspectives to their education and further their career.

Friedman Scholars receive funding for six or more months of study outside western Canada. Destinations for this year’s award winners include University of California, San Francisco, Maastricht University, Harvard Medical School, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Read more about these award winners and their research.