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    Modified Asset Map v3 Modified Asset Map v3 Document Transcript

    • Alberta Asset Map for Health ResearchInnovation Platforms
    • Version 32
    • Table of ContentsExecutive Summary..................................................................................................................................... 5Introduction................................................................................................................................................. 7 AIHS Strategic Implementation Process................................................................................................... 7 Innovation Platforms............................................................................................................................... 8Technological Platforms............................................................................................................................ 10 Genome Sciences................................................................................................................................... 10 Imaging.................................................................................................................................................. 12 Animal Models....................................................................................................................................... 14 Nanotechnology..................................................................................................................................... 15 Biosafety................................................................................................................................................ 16 Other Technological Platforms.............................................................................................................. 16Information Based Platforms .................................................................................................................... 21 Health Informatics................................................................................................................................. 21 Bioinformatics........................................................................................................................................ 21 Patient Database/ Registries.................................................................................................................. 22Human Resource Based Platforms ............................................................................................................ 23Patient Based Research Platforms............................................................................................................. 27Other Health Research Support Capabilities............................................................................................. 30 Pre-Clinical Facilities ............................................................................................................................. 30 Biorepositories ...................................................................................................................................... 30 Clinical Trials Support Units .................................................................................................................. 31 Business Support Platforms................................................................................................................... 33Other Health Research Entities & Facilities............................................................................................... 34 Knowledge Translation.......................................................................................................................... 35 Networks............................................................................................................................................... 37Key and Apparent Strengths ..................................................................................................................... 38 Comparative Positioning........................................................................................................................ 38 Identified Strengths............................................................................................................................... 39 Stem Cells.......................................................................................................................................... 39 Nanotechnology................................................................................................................................ 39 Prion Research................................................................................................................................... 39 Genomics........................................................................................................................................... 39 Virology.............................................................................................................................................. 40 Imaging.............................................................................................................................................. 40 Cardiovascular Diseases..................................................................................................................... 40 Cancer................................................................................................................................................ 40 3
    • Neurological Diseases and Rehabilitative Medicine.......................................................................... 41 Engineering........................................................................................................................................ 41Opportunities and Challenges................................................................................................................... 42 Opportunities and Challenges in Areas of Strength ............................................................................... 42 Other Challenges and Opportunities..................................................................................................... 42 Challenges......................................................................................................................................... 42 Opportunities.................................................................................................................................... 43Innovation Platform Facilitators................................................................................................................ 44 AIHS Ethics and Innovation Platforms Unit............................................................................................ 44 Strategic Clinical Networks.................................................................................................................... 44 Laboratory Alberta................................................................................................................................. 45 Campus Alberta..................................................................................................................................... 46 Centres for Research and Commercialization (CRC) .............................................................................. 46 Academic Health Network..................................................................................................................... 47Glossary..................................................................................................................................................... 48Methodology............................................................................................................................................. 49 Process................................................................................................................................................... 49 Constraints............................................................................................................................................. 51References................................................................................................................................................. 52 4
    • EXECUTIVE SUMMARY This Asset Map inventories the platforms (organizations, systems and assets) that support health research and innovation in the province of Alberta. Through the development of this Asset Map, Alberta Innovates Health Solutions (AIHS)’ will be better able to determine the province’s greatest strengths and challenges and to determine which areas require priority focus by AIHS and its partners and stakeholders. AIHS defines Innovation Platforms as “a technological and organizational environment conducive to discovery and knowledge development that will help fuel innovation.” An Innovation Platform is more than just infrastructure, it is a roadmap for innovation, an approach that: • drives technological, scientific and conceptual innovation to advance research in health • leverages a variety of competencies and assets (including those of partners) • cuts across traditional organizational boundaries to capture province-wide opportunities and enable seamless handoffs of ideas and projects across the discovery to application research spectrum • integrates “technology push” and “market pull” to drive technically actionable and meaningful innovations Within this Asset Map, Innovation Platforms are categorized in tables as • technological platforms • information based platforms • human resource based platforms • patient-based research platforms • other health research support capabilities • other health research organizations Provincial strengths were identified in several areas of basic research, such as virology, prion research, genotyping, and bioinformatics (but, except for metabolomics, no other areas of genomics). Basic research strengths that have led to some translational successes include metabolomics, nanotechnology, neuroscience, and stemcells. Other strengths in include: • imaging • rehabilitative medicine, including neurological subspecialties and reconstructive sciences 5
    • • cardiovascular research • bioengineering, with the province’s expertise in this field underpinning its strengths in nanotechnology, medical device development, and tissue bank management.There are a number of organizations which will help facilitate the province’s new approach to healthresearch and innovation including: • AIHS Ethics and Innovation Platforms Unit • Strategic Clinical Networks • Laboratory Alberta • Campus Alberta • Academic Health Network • Centres for Research and Commercialization (CRC) 6
    • INTRODUCTION Alberta Innovates Health Solutions (AIHS)’ mission is to work with partners and stakeholders to design, develop, deliver and evaluate programs, services, and initiatives to help achieve focus and excellence in innovation and health research, and provide solutions to health sector problems. The result will be a robust health-research-based economy in Alberta. To succeed in fulfilling this mission, AIHS uses the following strategies: • Support Discovery: AIHS will support excellence in innovation and health-related research in defined areas of strategic focus. • Stimulate Application: AIHS will collaborate with the research community, the private sector, and the health care community to meet, through research and innovation, their priority needs and challenges. AIHS will also facilitate the translation of research findings into an efficient and effective health system (or a business advantage).1 AIHS’ partners and stakeholders include: • Alberta Enterprise and Advanced Education (EAE) • Alberta Health and Wellness (AHW) • Alberta Innovates corporations (AI) • Alberta Health Services (AHS) • Post-secondary institutions • Research organizations and fundersAIHS Strategic Implementation Process In 2010, the Government of Alberta released Alberta’s Health Research and Innovation Strategy (AHRIS) which sets provincial health research priorities for ten years. AHRIS creates common aims for the health system and the health research and innovation system. These aims focus on three high- level strategic priorities: • Wellness at Every Age—improved health outcomes for Albertans • Innovative Health Service Delivery—a more accessible and responsive health care system • Enhanced Socio-Economic Outcomes—diversified opportunities that benefit Alberta’s economy 7
    • The Government expects that the many organizations, entities, and individuals who make up the research and innovation system in Alberta will move over time to focus their research investments and attention on meeting these priorities. In 2011, AIHS initiated a Strategic Implementation Process designed to elicit stakeholder input into the organization’s strategic direction and program implementation. The priorities and areas of strategic focus described in AHRIS were used as a framework for the Process and the creation of Working Groups, including an Innovation Platforms Working Group. To facilitate their discussions, the Innovation Platforms Working Group requested an Asset Map of the Innovation Platforms in Alberta. The first version of this document was released in September 2011. This Asset Map provides a snapshot of Alberta’s health research assets including its strengths, opportunities, and challenges. The Asset Map has been updated in order to ensure that the document reflects the evolution of AIHS’ strategic and operational direction since creation of the first draft and to provide AIHS’ broad stakeholder community an opportunity to ensure the accuracy of the innovation platforms considered within the document.Innovation Platforms The IP Working Group adopted the AHRIS definition of Innovation Platforms as “a technological and organizational environment conducive to discovery and knowledge development that will help fuel innovation.” The Working Group expanded the definition to include the concept that an Innovation Platform is more than just infrastructure, it is a roadmap for innovation, an approach that: • drives technological, scientific and conceptual innovation to advance research in health • leverages a variety of competencies and assets (including those of partners) • cuts across traditional organizational boundaries to capture province-wide opportunities and enable seamless handoffs of ideas and projects across the discovery to application research spectrum • integrates “technology push” and “market pull” to drive technically actionable and meaningful innovations Within this Asset Map, the health research innovation platforms are categorized as • technological platforms, e.g., those related to the genome sciences, imaging, animal models, nanotechnology, biosafety, other technology • information based platforms, e.g., bioinformatics, health informatics, information technology, patient data registries 8
    • • human resource based platforms, e.g., training facilities and courses • patient-based research platforms which involves patients e.g., clinical trials, patient management, service delivery • other health research support capabilities, e.g., pre-clinical facilities, biorepositories/ tissue banks, clinical trials support, business support • other health research organizations, e.g., health research facilities conducting numerous activities, those specializing in knowledge transfer, networks.Each of these categories include core facilities (often innovation platforms themselves) which areaccessible by the broader community and include personnel, equipment, information technology,buildings, etc. They contain sophisticated instruments/ technologies and staff with expertise in: • operating the instruments or harnessing the technologies • interpreting the data (informatics and biostatistics) • providing consultation on how best to use the resources to address distinct research questions.The availability of core facilities generally results in improved research efficiency and productivity, asindividual researchers are not trained in the techniques being offered and do not have to learn them2.9
    • TECHNOLOGICAL PLATFORMS Technological Platforms include those related to: • genome sciences • imaging • animal models • nanotechnology • biosafety • other technological areas, e.g. stem cell facilities, other cell processing facilitiesGenome Sciences • Most of the genomics equipment in Alberta is utilized in genotyping, proteomics and metabolomics. • The sole next generation sequencer in Alberta, an important instrument for today’s genome sequencing projects, is housed at the Alberta Ingenuity Centre for Livestock Genomics Technology (aka Alberta Bovine Genomics Program) at UofA. This facility focuses on agricultural genomics; but, the equipment could be utilized in health research. This is also true for other equipment within agricultural genomics facilities. • Conventional sequencers are found at the University Core DNA Services at UofC and the Applied Genomics Centre at UofA. • At least six of the genomics platforms have a strong bioinformatics component or specialize in bioinformatics.Genomics Technology Facility AffiliationAgriculture Genomics and Proteomics Unit UofAAlberta Ingenuity Centre for Livestock Genomics Technology (Alberta Bovine Genomics Program) UofAAlberta Transplant Applied Genomics Centre (ATAGC) UofAApplied Genomics Centre UofACentre of Excellence in Gastrointestinal Inflammation & Immunity Research (CEGIIR) UofAInstitute for Biomolecular Design (IBD) (incorporates the former Alberta Peptide Institute) UofA
    • Facility AffiliationMass Spectrometry Facility UofAMicroarray and Proteomics Facility UofANational High Field Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Centre (NANUC) UofAPan Alberta Metabolomics Platform (PanAMP) UofASignal Transduction Group UofAUniversity of Alberta (Other Labs) - 11 additional facilities UofABioinformatics Innovation Centre (formerly Integrated and Distributed Bioinformatics Platform for UofCGenome Canada)Bio-NMR Center UofCChemical Instrumentation Facility UofCClara Christie Centre for Mouse Genomics (CMG) UofCInstitute for Biocomplexity and Informatics UofCSnyder Institute of Infection, Immunity & Inflammation UofCSouthern Alberta Cancer Research Institute (SACRI) UofCSouthern Alberta Mass Spectrometry Centre for Proteomics (SAMS) UofCSouthern Alberta Microarray Facility (SAMF) UofCSun Centre of Excellence for Visual Genomics (COE) UofCUniversity Core DNA (UCDNA) Services UofCUniversity of Calgary (Other Labs) - 3 additional facilities UofCNuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) Center UofLUniversity of Lethbridge (Other Labs) - 2 additional facilities UofLAutism Research Centre, AHS AHS (Glenrose)Genomics Platforms with Major Bioinformatics Capabilities Platform Affiliation Bioinformatics Innovation Centre (formerly Integrated and Distributed Bioinformatics Platform for UofC Genome Canada) Bio-NMR Center UofC Centre of Excellence in Gastrointestinal Inflammation & Immunity Research (CEGIIR) IP UofA Institute for Biocomplexity and Informatics UofC Pan Alberta Metabolomics Platform (PanAMP) UofA Sun Centre of Excellence for Visual Genomics (COE) UofC 11
    • Imaging Imaging for health research includes: • magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) • functional MRI • x-rays • computed tomography (CT; includes SPECT [single-photon emission computed tomography]) • positron emission tomography (PET) • electron microscopy • image processing. There are a number of facilities in Alberta with strong capabilities in imaging people, animals, cells and materials. Six facilities of these facilities specialize almost exclusively in imaging: • Bio-imaging Facility, University of Lethbridge • Cell Imaging Centre, University of Alberta • Quantitative Imaging Centre, University of Alberta – the Centre’s primary focus is petroleum recovery and advanced materials, but it can also be used for health related applications • Bone Imaging Laboratory, University of Calgary • Microscopy and Imaging Facility, University of Calgary • Seaman Family MR Research Centre, University of Calgary NOTE: Although all the groups listed in the table below used imaging in their research, some of the groups may not use imaging equipment located in their own research facility.Imaging Facilities Facility AffiliationAlberta Cardiovascular & Stroke Research Centre (ABACUS) (Alberta University Hospital) UofAAlberta Centre for Surface Engineering and Science (ACSES) UofAAlberta Transplant Applied Genomics Centre (ATAGC) UofABebensee Schizophrenia Research Unit UofACardiovascular Research Centre UofACell Imaging Centre UofA 12
    • Facility AffiliationComputational Memory Lab UofACross Cancer Institute (UofA/ AHS) UofADepartment of Cell Biology, University of Alberta UofADepression and Stress Disorder Research Group UofAImmunology Network (ImmuNet) UofALi Ka Shing Institute of Virology (formerly Alberta Institute for Viral Immunology [AIVI] and Centre of UofAExcellence in Viral Hepatitis Research)National Institute for Nanotechnology (NINT) UofANeurochemical Research Unit (NRU) UofAPeter S. Allen MR Research Centre (formerly In Vivo NMR) UofAPharmaceutical Orthopaedic Research Lab. (PORL) UofAQuantitative Imaging Centre UofASurgical Medical Research Institute (SMRI) UofAUniversity of Alberta (Other Labs) – 4 labs (Begg, Jhamandas, Uludag, Zemp) UofAWomen & Childrens Health Research Institute (WCHRI) UofAAdvanced Micro/nanosystems Integration Facility (AMIF) UofCAlberta Innovates Centre for Integrated Biomedical Technology (Biovantage Inc.) UofCBone Imaging Laboratory UofCLibin Cardiovascular Institute of Alberta (LCIA) UofCMental Health Centre for Education and Research (MHCER) UofCMicroscopy and Imaging Facility UofCSeaman Family MR Research Centre UofCSnyder Institute of Infection, Immunity & Inflammation UofCSouthern Alberta Cancer Research Institute (SACRI) UofCBio-imaging Facility UofLCanadian Centre for Behavioural Neuroscience UofL 13
    • Animal Models The following facilities develop animal models for use in health research. These models range from transgenic mice and zebra fish to mouse and catfish immunological models.Animal Models Developed for Health Research Facility Animal Models AffiliationCentre of Excellence in “Animal disease models” UofAGastrointestinal Inflammation &Immunity Research (CEGIIR)Pulmonary Research Group (PRG) Murine model of ovalbumin induced airway UofA hyperresponsiveness and inflammationSurgical Medical Research Institute Transgenic mice UofA(SMRI)University of Alberta (Other Labs) Allison Lab has transgenic zebra fish UofA Baldwin Lab has developed a TCR transgenic mouse model Michalak Lab has transgenic mice Stafford Lab has developed a channel catfish immunological modelAlberta Childrens Hospital Research Transgenic mice UofCInstitute for Child and Maternal HealthClara Christie Centre for Mouse “Tools to effectively generate and study transgenic mice” UofCGenomics (CMG)Embryonic Stem Cell (ESC) Facility Development of animal models via targeted mutagenesis; UofC animal injury modelsSnyder Institute of Infection, Immunity Mouse phenomics facilities, including transgenic mice UofC& InflammationSouthern Alberta Cancer Research Transgenic mouse facility UofCInstitute (SACRI)University of Calgary (Other Labs) Child Lab developing developing new transgenic lines of zebra UofC fish for visualizing vascular development Cross Lab has transgenic mice Kubes Lab has established an in vivo septic transgenic mouse model (to elucidate the biological responses to sepsis). 14
    • Nanotechnology Nanotechnology (nanotech) has utility in electronics, materials construction, machinery and tools, pharmaceuticals, and health care. Nanotech can be applied to pharmaceuticals and health care for: • miniaturized diagnostic implants (for early diagnosis and monitoring of illnesses) • nanoscale coatings to improve the bioactivity and biocompatibility of implants • ultra-precise drug delivery systems • sensors for Lab-on-a-Chip • bone and tissue regeneration. According to Government of Alberta’s 2009 Nanotechnology Asset Map3, seven facilities are applying nanotechnologies to health research, including a pan-Canadian facility headquartered in Edmonton, the National Institute for Nanotechnology.Nanotechnology Facility AffiliationAdvanced Micro/nanosystems Integration Facility (AMIF) UofCAlberta Centre for Advanced MNT Products (ACAMP) UofC & UofAAlberta Centre for Surface Engineering and Science (ACSES) UofAIntegrated Nanosystems Research Facility (formerly Centre of Excellence in Integrated NanoTools UofA[CEIN])Micro and Nanofabrication Facility (NanoFab) UofANational High Field Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Centre (NANUC) UofANational Institute for Nanotechnology (NINT) IP UofA 15
    • Biosafety Biosafety Level 2 and 3 (BSL-2, BSL-3) facilities exist at five locations in Alberta. BSL-2 facilities are suitable for work involving agents that pose moderate hazards to personnel and the environment, while BSL-3 facilities allow research on agents that may cause serious or potentially lethal diseases but for which treatments exist, e.g., human immunodeficiency virus [HIV], West Nile Virus4.Biosafety Facilities Facility BSL Facility AffiliationCentre for Prions and Protein Folding “Areas with analytical instrumentation are designated for UofADiseases biocontainment use”Centre of Excellence in Gastrointestinal BSL-3 laboratory to isolate, characterize and formulate UofAInflammation & Immunity Research diagnostic tests for the human betaretrovirus(CEGIIR)Li Ka Shing Institute of Virology BSL-2 and BSL-3- animal biocontainment suites UofA(formerly Alberta Institute for ViralImmunology [AIVI] and Centre ofExcellence in Viral Hepatitis Research)Pharmaceutical Production Research BSL-2 tissue culture UofCFacility (PPRF)University of Calgary (in association BSL-2 laboratory space UofCwith the Alberta Prion ResearchInstitute)Other Technological Platforms Other health research technological platforms include those related to: • biochemistry • chromatography • flow cytometry and cell sorting • histochemistry • histopathology • microbiology • spectrophotometry 16
    • Much of the equipment related to this research such as spectrometers, gas and liquid chromatography (GC and LC), microscopes, etc. can be found in many other laboratories in Alberta’s universities and colleges that were not identified for this report.Other Technological Platforms Facility/ Affiliation Equipment/ Expertise AffiliationAlberta Diabetes Institute (ADI) Stem cell facility UofAAlberta Innovates Centre for Carbohydrate library screening capabilities; advanced electrospray UofACarbohydrate Science (AICCS) ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS) instrumentation; X-ray crystallography; cell engineeringBiological and Medicinal Chemistry Biomolecular design, peptide array synthesis UofALaboratory (BMCL)Centre for Prions and Protein “Communal areas with analytical instrumentation”, biochemistry UofAFolding Diseases wet-lab activity, histopathologyCentre of Excellence in Tissue storage and processing, molecular biology (FPLC, HPLC), UofAGastrointestinal Inflammation & endoscopy, in vitro modelsImmunity Research (CEGIIR)Department of Chemistry, (i) Analytical and Instrumentation Lab - spectrophotometers, UofAUniversity of Alberta spectrometers, microscopes, GC, HPLC-MS, etc. (ii) Biological Services Lab– gel electrophoresis; cell sorting, collecting and other cell chemistry equipment; etc. (iii) X-ray Crystallography LabFaculty of Physical Education and Numerous pieces of equipment to measure human movement UofARecreation capture and analysisFlow Cytometry Facility Flow cytometry, cell sorting, data analysis UofAImmunology Network (ImmuNet) Biophysical research (BIAcore technology, multi-angle static and UofA quasi-elastic light scattering detector), cell sortingInstitute for Biomolecular Design Amino acid analysis, peptide synthesis UofA(IBD) (incorporates the formerAlberta Peptide Institute)Institute for Reconstructive Anechoic chamber facility; equipment to facilitate assessment of UofASciences in Medicine (iRSM), UofA/ jaw function; advanced digital technologies, virtual reality and solidAHS biomodeling for medical modeling research; biomechanical engineeringLi Ka Shing Institute of Virology Cell sorting and other core facilities (not specified) UofA(formerly Alberta Institute for ViralImmunology [AIVI] and Centre ofExcellence in Viral HepatitisResearch)Lipid and Lipid Metabolite Analysis FDLC lipoprotein profiling, separation, and purification UofACore FacilityMass Spectrometry Facility 11 mass specs applied to other research areas as well as genomics UofAMembrane Protein Research Group DNA and protein manipulations, UV /visual spectrophotometers, UofA spectrofluorimeters, HPLC, liquid scintillation counting, electron 17
    • Facility/ Affiliation Equipment/ Expertise Affiliation paramagnetic resonanceMolecular and Cell Biology of Lipids High performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), fast protein liquid UofA chromatography (FPLC), gas chromatographyMuttart Diabetes Research & Core laboratory facilities (not specified). UofATraining CentreSignal Transduction Group (STRG) Biochemistry, cell biology UofASurgical Medical Research Institute Rooms for operating on large and small animals; biochemistry and UofA(SMRI) histology laboratoryUofA (Other Labs) Elliott Lab has cryobiology facilities UofA Glerum Lab has microfluidic chip-based assays for use in studying mitochondrial disease Holt Lab has spectrophotometer, cell fermenter and purifier, chromatographs, other Jhamandas Lab has equipment for immunohistochemistry, in situ hybridization, single cell RT-PCR, electrophysiology Jurasz Lab has equipment for platelet aggregometry, flow cytometry, microscopy, immunoblot, zymography, PCR, and in vitro angiogenesis and endothelial cell migration assays Martin Lab and Environmental Health Sciences Lab has chromatographic systems, mass spectrometry, bioanalytical instruments including PCR and microarray and other equipment Michalak Lab has various stem cell lines Sipione Lab has cell culture, biochemistry and molecular biology facilities Spyracopoulos Lab has NMR spectrometers, UV/ visible spectrometer, FPLC Uludag Lab has facilities to synthesize and characterize small organic molecules and polymeric materials, gel electrophoresis, fluorescent microscope, thermocyclers, HPLC systems, flow cytometerWomen & Childrens Health Electrophysiology, molecular biology, stem cell research and UofAResearch Institute (WCHRI) physiological measurement labs, animal facilitiesAlberta Childrens Hospital Stem cell facility, cell and tissue cultureResearch Institute for Child and UofCMaternal HealthAlberta Innovates Centre for Biosensors, tissue characterizationIntegrated Biomedical Technology UofC(Biovantage Inc.) IPBiomedical Technical Support Electronic and mechanical UofCCentreCentre for Advanced Technologies Histopathology (veterinary medicine but may have utility in human UofCin the Life Sciences (CAT) health research) 18
    • Facility/ Affiliation Equipment/ Expertise AffiliationCentre for Bioengineering Research Numerous bioengineering facilities including those for tissue and UofCand Education (CBRE) cellular engineeringChemical Instrumentation Facility UV / visible spectrophotometers, EPR spectrometer, circular UofC dichroism / polarimeter, elemental analyzerClara Christie Centre for Mouse Embyronic stem cell /targeted mutagenesis, 3D morphometrics. UofCGenomics (CMG)Clark H. Smith Brain Tumour Centre Brain tumor stem cell core UofCIPDepartment of Chemistry, Includes the following facilities: (i) Chemistry instrumentationUniversity of Calgary facility (see above); (ii) X-ray crystallography service; (iii) Electronics UofC shop; (iv) High performance computing cluster; (v) Science workshop with various machine tools.Embryonic Stem Cell (ESC) Facility Bioreactors, equipment for the expansion and differentiation of UofC embryonic stem cellsHotchkiss Brain Institute Stem cells UofCPharmaceutical Production Pharmaceutical scale-up, modeling cell behaviour; development ofResearch Facility (PPRF) bioreactor related technologies, tissue-derived and embryonic stem UofC cells; large-scale tissue culture and bioreactor facilitiesSnyder Institute of Infection, Flow cytometer, cell sorter, anaerobic chamberImmunity & InflammationSouthern Alberta Cancer Research Peptide synthesis facility, flow cytometry facility, mouse embryonicInstitute (SACRI) stem cell facility; hybridoma and antibodies, fluorescence activated cell sorting, cell and embryo culture, animal surgery, histology, in UofC situ hybridization, immunofluorescence, near infrared protein/DNA imaging and FPLCUofC (Other Labs) DeVinney Lab has the infrastructure for cell biology, including microscopes, tissue culture Dobrinski lab has facilities for stem cell research UofC Thompson Lab has in vivo microscopy and real-time quantitative PCR infrastructure to investigate neurodegenerative disordersCanadian Centre for Behavioural Equipment for fluorescence, confocal, quantitative video- andNeuroscience computer-based behaviour analysis methods, dense array UofL electroencephalography, in vivo electrophysiology, immunocytochemistryDepartment of Chemistry & Includes the following equipment: NMR spectrometers; X-rayBiochemistry, University of diffractometers; infrared spectrometers; fluorescence, UV-visible,Lethbridge surface plasmon resonance, and raman spectrophotometers; high- UofL performance computing facility; GC and HPLC; calorimeters; high temperature and pressure densimeter; protein solutions dynamic light scattering deviceNuclear Magnetic Resonance NMR spectrometers with utility in research other than UofL(NMR) Center metabolomicsUniversity of Lethbridge (Other Wieden Lab has equipment for enzyme kinetics, molecular biology, UofL 19
    • Facility/ Affiliation Equipment/ Expertise AffiliationLabs) bacterial cell culture, protein and RNA purificationCalgary Laboratory Services, AHS Laboratory testing, including pathology/cytopathology, AHS biochemistry, hematology, microbiologyDepartment of Chemistry, Kings Spectrophotometers, spectrometers, GC, GC-MS KingsUniversity College University CollegeNuRx, AITF Chemical, biochemical or fermentation technologies; can help isolate bioactive ingredients, synthesize compounds, or develop and AITF scale-up processes.Olds College School of Innovation, Pilot plant and microprocessing facilities for the processing of OldsOlds biolubricants and bioproducts. College 20
    • INFORMATION BASED PLATFORMS Information-based platforms include those related to: • health informatics – a discipline at the intersection of information science, computer science and health care which generally refers to the management of patient or health information • bioinformatics – a discipline at the intersection of information science, computer science and biological research data • patient databases/registries – research access to anonymized health data and patient information, often related to a specific disease type.Health Informatics Health informatics is a discipline at the intersection of information science, computer science, and health care (as opposed to bioinformatics which is at the intersection of science, computer science and biological research data). Health informatics generally refers to the management of patient or health information.Health Informatics Facility/ Affiliation AffiliationAlberta Cardiovascular & Stroke Research Centre (ABACUS), Alberta University Hospital UofAAlberta Centre for Injury Control and Research UofAAlberta Dialysis Databank UofAAlberta Innovates Centre for Machine Learning UofAAlberta Research Centre for Health Evidence (previously Alberta Research Centre for Child Health UofAEvidence)Centre for Health Evidence (CHE) UofAAlberta Health Services Division of Population Health, Tom Baker Cancer Centre UofACalgary Centre for Clinical Research (CCCR) UofCHealth Innovation & Information Technology Centre (HiiTeC) (previously Health Telematics Unit and UofCTelehealth/e-Health Research & Training Program)Libin Cardiovascular Institute of Alberta (LCIA) UofCAlberta IBD Consortium UofA & UofCAlberta Centre for Child, Family and Community Research (ACCFCR), AHS AHSAlberta Health Services (AHS) Office of Surgical Research, AHS AHSInstitute of Health Economics (IHE), Edmonton IHEBioinformatics 21
    • Bioinformatics is the intersection between information science, computer science and biological research data. The first six bioinformatics facilities listed in the table below were included as part of the inventory of genomics platforms in the previous section. The seventh facility, the Flow Cytometry Facility at UofA, analyzes data from flow cytometry and cell sorting.Bioinformatics Capabilities Facility Affiliation Bioinformatics Innovation Centre (formerly Integrated and Distributed Bioinformatics Platform for UofC Genome Canada) Bio-NMR Center UofC Centre of Excellence in Gastrointestinal Inflammation & Immunity Research (CEGIIR) IP UofA Institute for Biocomplexity and Informatics UofC Pan Alberta Metabolomics Platform (PanAMP) UofA Sun Centre of Excellence for Visual Genomics (COE) UofC Flow Cytometry Facility UofAPatient Database/ Registries Patient databases and registries contain health data and patient information which has been anonymized in order to allow researcher access. The information often relates to a specific disease type.Patient Registries Registry AffiliationChild and Youth Data Laboratory, Alberta Centre for Child, Family and Community Research (ACCFCR) AHSAlberta Dialysis Databank UofAAlberta IBD Consortium UofA & CAlberta NETCARE AHSAlberta Trauma Registry AHSClark H. Smith Brain Tumour Centre UofCWilson Disease Mutation Database UofA 22
    • HUMAN RESOURCE BASED PLATFORMS All health research involves training of some kind, from skills in basic science techniques to patient management but the health research entities listed below identify specific training facilities.Human Resource Based Platforms Facility Training AffiliationAgriculture Genomics and Proteomics Provides training for performing genomic and proteomic UofAUnit experiments, serves as a teaching facility for graduate coursesAlberta Institute for Human Nutrition Offers “opportunities for multidisciplinary and UofA interdisciplinary education”Centre for Ambulatory Rehabilitation Hands-on teaching site for rehabilitation students and UofAResearch and Education (CARRE) IP continuing education for practicing cliniciansCentre for Health Evidence (CHE) Supports the teaching of evidence-based health care and UofA provides a number of educational servicesCentre for Health Promotion Studies Interdisciplinary graduate programs UofACentre for Neuroscience Focused on administering a graduate program, an UofA undergraduate honors program and a seminar programCentre for the Advancement of Minimally Provides a centralized training site for residents and UofAInvasive Surgery (MIS) (CAMIS), Royal professional development in MIS techniques for surgeonsAlexandra Hospital and allied health professionalsComplementary & Alternative Research Create a supportive and collaborative environment that UofA& Education (CARE) fosters learning, at all health care provider levels about CAM therapies, productsDepartment of Public Health Sciences Graduate programs on health policy and management, UofA health technology assessment, epidemiology and biostatistics, environmental health and global healthFaculty of Physical Education and Physical education and recreation faculty with numerous UofARecreation courses and programsImmunology Network (ImmuNet) Various educational and networking events, including UofA seminars and a one day retreatInstitute for Continuing Care Education Participates in innovative education programs UofA, AHS,and Research (ICCER), with AHS, others othersInstitute for Stuttering Treatment and Offers advanced professional training for speech-language UofAResearch (ISTAR) pathology students and cliniciansInternational Institute for Qualitative Offers a wide variety of training opportunities through UofAMethodology (IIQM) annual conferences, courses, and workshopsJohn Dossetor Health Ethics Centre Hosts health ethics seminar series, a symposium, and UofA workshops. Offers graduate courses in healthcare ethics, research ethics, public health ethics, law and policyMembrane Protein Research Group Trainee program in the area of structure and function of UofA 23
    • Facility Training Affiliation membrane proteinsMicroarray and Proteomics Facility Teaching facility for graduate and undergraduate courses UofAMuttart Diabetes Research & Training Trains students interested in diabetes-related research UofACentre IPNational High Field Nuclear Magnetic NMR scientific training, operator training, technical training UofAResonance Centre (NANUC)Rehabilitation Research Centre (RRC) Offers seminars and workshops on research methodology UofA to faculty, students and clinicians. Develops materials for use in teaching research methods, ethics, and a variety of related topicsSurgical Medical Research Institute Provides major teaching facilities for surgical residents in UofA(SMRI) training and for core training (surgical skills) for postgraduate Year 1 & Year 2, graduate, and summer students. Also Continuing Medical Education coursesCentre for Bioengineering Research and Responsible for delivering the undergraduate specialization UofCEducation (CBRE) in bioengineering in the Schulich School of EngineeringHealth Innovation & Information Works closely with the department of Community Health UofCTechnology Centre (HiiTeC) (previously Sciences and the Medical Ward of the 21stHealth Telematics Unit and Telehealth/e- Century to operate training programs that leverageHealth Research & Training Program) information technologies and the HiiTeC computing platformsLibin Cardiovascular Institute of Alberta Coordinates all cardiovascular education within both AHS UofC(LCIA) IP (Calgary) and UofC.Microscopy and Imaging Facility Holds workshops and practical courses in microscopy and UofC image processingWard of the 21st Century IP (with AHS) Medical teaching unit at the Foothills Medical Centre UofC & AHSBanff International Research Station for Educational programs and workshops Banff CentreMathematical Innovation and Discovery(BIRS) IP, c/o The Banff CentreBio-imaging Facility, UofA Large teaching component, including Ultrastructure Online, UofA an internet-based interactive learning tool designed to assist students in the study of cell structure and function. In addition, the Universities of Alberta, Calgary and Lethbridge offer numerous relevant courses. For example: • Tyrell & Palmer highlighted training strengths at UofA in primary care and First Nations population health research. • The Nanotechnology Asset Map described hands-on training at UofA Faculty of Engineering in Nanoscale System Design (Computer Engineering), Nanoengineering (Electrical Engineering and Engineering Physics) and Nano and Functional Materials (Materials Engineering). An undergraduate degree with a minor or concentration in Nanoscience is offered at UofC. 24
    • • AITF manages a $3 million per year scholarship program for graduate students in nanotechnology fields at Alberta universities. • AIHS offers similar graduate student support programs. As well as the training offered by the Universities of Alberta, Calgary, and Lethbridge, 14 other educational institutions in the province offer potentially relevant training. In addition, 11 of Alberta’s institutions offer nursing courses.Educational Institutions Offering Courses With Utility in Health Research Educational Institution URL Key InformationAlberta College of Medical http://acmlt.org/ Lab technician coursesLaboratory TechnologistsGrand Prairie Regional College www.gprc.ab.ca Centre for Research and InnovationGrant MacEwan University www.macewan.ca Various biological and healthcare coursesConcordia University College of www.concordia.ab.ca Postgraduate public health courseAlbertaAthabasca University www.athabascau.ca Centre for Nursing and Health Studies conducts research on health behaviour. It also offers an MSc in Health Studies that provides competency in health policy, evaluation and planningKings University College www.kingsu.ca Three potentially relevant science degreesDeVry Institute of Technology www.devry.ca Degree course in Computer Engineering TechnologyKeyano College http://keyano.ca/ University transfer programs in various relevant topicsMedicine Hat College www.mhc.ab.ca/ University transfer programs in various relevant topicsMount Royal University www.mtroyal.ca Various biological and healthcare degreesNorthern Alberta Institute of www.nait.ca Programs in: biological sciences technology,Technology (NAIT) biomedical engineering technology, cytotechnology, magnetic resonance, medical laboratory technology, medical radiologic technology, nanotechnology systemsNorQuest College www.norquest.ca Home to the Centre for Excellence in Continuing CareOlds College www.oldscollege.ca Conducts research in nutraceuticals, functional foods.Red Deer College www.rdc.ab.ca Medical Laboratory Assistant programSouthern Alberta Institute of www.sait.ca Offers courses in health information management,Technology (SAIT) medical laboratory technology, medical radiologic technology, nuclear medicine technologyUniversity of Alberta www.ualberta.ca Has over 5000 health science students in 14 disciplines across 8 health science faculties, including one of the most research intensive Faculties of 25
    • Educational Institution URL Key Information Nursing in Canada. Has a medical school and biomedical engineering capabilities.University of Calgary www.ucalgary.ca; Numerous departments within 6 health science http://contacts.ucalgary. faculties. Has a medical school and biomedical ca/directory/faculties engineering capabilities.University of Lethbridge www.uleth.ca/faculties- 10 relevant departments within the Faculty of Arts schools and Science. 26
    • PATIENT BASED RESEARCH PLATFORMS Patient based research platforms include all facilities that interact with patients. These include centres that conduct clinical trials or use humans as experimental subjects in their research. Clinical trials can include: • comparative drug based studies • comparative evaluation of new devices • new patient management models (e.g., hip and knee replacement health service model). Many of the facilities that conduct clinical trials also conduct other activities (e.g., patient management), although not all activities are patient based (e.g. basic research). NOTE: This Asset Map does not identify all the Clinical Trials Units or study sites (CTUs) in the province, as this was beyond the scope of the original project. However, any CTUs found during the searching of Alberta’s health research assets are included in the table below. As Alberta had 1,866 clinical trials in progress at the beginning of 2010 (clintrials.gov - a US registry of clinical trials conducted around the world), it is clear that not all CTUs are included in this inventory.Patient Based Research Platforms Facility Description AffiliationAlberta Asthma Centre (including Pulmonary Conducts clinical trials, patient management and UofAResearch Group) population level researchAlberta Bone and Joint Health Institute Conducts clinical trials UofC & AHS(includes McCaig Institute for Bone & JointHealth)Alberta Cardiovascular & Stroke Research Conducts clinical trials UofA (AlbertaCentre (ABACUS) University Hospital)Alberta Centre for Child, Family and Patient research for public policy and service delivery AHSCommunity Research (ACCFCR)Alberta Childrens Hospital Research Conducts clinical trials UofCInstitute for Child and Maternal Health(previously known as Institute of Child andMaternal Health [ICMH])Alberta IBD Consortium Collect patient data for population level research UofA & UofCAlberta NETCARE Collects patient health data for use by health providers AHS and researchersAleksandar Kostov Assistive Technology Conducts clinical trials UofA & AHSResearch Lab (Glenrose) 27
    • Facility Description AffiliationAutism Research Centre Patient research subjects but seemingly no clinical UofA & AHS trials (Glenrose)Bebensee Schizophrenia Research Unit Patient research subjects but seemingly no clinical UofA trialsBone Imaging Laboratory Conducts clinical trials UofCCanadian Centre for Behavioural Patient research subjects but seemingly no clinical UofANeuroscience trialsCentre for the Advancement of Minimally Patient research subjects but seemingly no clinical UofA & AHSInvasive Surgery (CAMIS) trials (Royal Alex Hospital)Centre for Ambulatory Rehabilitation Conducts clinical trials UofAResearch and Education (CARRE)Centre of Excellence in Gastrointestinal Conducts clinical trials UofAInflammation & Immunity Research (CEGIIR)Clark H. Smith Brain Tumour Centre Conducts clinical trials UofC (SACRI)Common Spinal Disorders Research Centre Conducts clinical trials UofA(CSD)Complementary & Alternative Research & Conducts clinical trials UofAEducation (CARE)Cross Cancer Institute Conducts clinical trials UofAEpidemiology Coordinating and Research Involved in a large number of single centre, and UofACentre (EPICORE) multicentre clinical trials in cardiovascular disease and other disease areasGastrointestinal and Liver Disease Research Conducts clinical trials UofAGroupHealth Research Innovation Facility Still under construction although will probably conduct UofA trials in the futureHuman Neurophysiology Lab. Patient research subjects but seemingly no clinical UofA trialsInstitute for Reconstructive Sciences in Conducts clinical trials AHSMedicine (iRSM) (Misericordia)Institute for Stuttering Treatment and Patient research subjects but seemingly no clinical UofAResearch (ISTAR) trialsLibin Cardiovascular Institute of Alberta Conducts clinical trials UofC(LCIA)Mazankowski Alberta Heart Institute Conducts clinical trials UofA & AHSNorthern Alberta Clinical Trials and Research A research and clinical trials network supporting and UofA & AHSCentre (NACTRC) Clinical Trials Support Unit managing clinical trialsPsychosis Research Unit Conducts clinical trials UofCPsychotherapy Research Group Conducts clinical trials UofARehabilitation Neurosciences Research Working with patients to develop devices. Cannot UofAGroup determine if they conduct clinical trials 28
    • Facility Description Affiliation SCI Alberta Conducts clinical trials UofA & Calgary Tom Baker Cancer Center Clinical Research Conducts clinical trials UofC Program Ward of the 21st Century Conducts clinical trials UofC & AHS Women & Childrens Health Research Conducts clinical trials through the Child and Family UofA Institute (WCHRI) Clinical Research Unit (CRU) & Women’s CRU.Other Clinical Trials Units within Alberta CTU Description URLCentre for Sleep and Human Conducts many Phase II –IV clinical www.centreforsleep.comPerformance trialsDepartment of Paediatrics, Members conduct numerous clinical www.calgaryhealthregion.ca/clin/chilUniversity of Calgary trials d/paed/directory/neonatology.html; www.ucalgary.ca/paed/Multiple Sclerosis Patient Care and Participates in clinical trials www.albertahealthservices.ca/serviceResearch Clinic s.asp?pid=service&rid=4306Northwest Dermatology and Laser Undertaking clinical trials in http://northwestdermatology.ca/Centre psoriasisPediatric Centre for Weight and All who enroll in the clinic have the www.albertahealthservices.ca/pcwh.aHealth (PCWH) opportunity to participate as sp research volunteers 29
    • OTHER HEALTH RESEARCH SUPPORT CAPABILITIES Other health research support capabilities fall into the following categories: • pre-clinical facilities • biorepositories/ tissue banks • clinical trials support facilities • business support platformsPre-Clinical Facilities Alberta has five facilities that offer pre-clinical services in addition to animal models described above.Pre-Clinical Platforms Facility Description AffiliationBone Imaging Laboratory Studies include pre-clinical and clinical research UofCClark H. Smith Brain Tumour Centre Has “Pre-Clinical Testing Core” UofC (SACRI)NuRx Can take clients’ products from discovery and AITF development through scale-up, prototyping and regulatory stages, to pre- and post-clinical trials.Pharmaceutical Production Research Offers scale-up and manufacturing development at the UofCFacility (PPRF) pre-clinical stageSurgical Medical Research Institute Has experimental surgical facilities, including rooms UofA(SMRI) suitable for operating on large and small animals An initial CFI investment of $36 million has been leveraged to build three cGMP (current Good Manufacturing Practices) cell manufacturing facilities in Toronto, Montréal and Edmonton. These facilities will be completed by early 2013 and will join others across the country to form CellCAN, a new consortium that plans to support early phase clinical trials across Canada.5Biorepositories Ten biorepositories or tissue banks were identified for this Asset Map. Six of these offer researchers appropriately consented tissues, blood, DNA, other molecular data, and anonymized clinical information. Four banks offer tissues from patients with cancer. Other tissues include those from patients with IBD, rheumatology; heart disease; bone and joint disease; kidney, liver and blood diseases. In three facilities, healthy tissue has been obtained for later use in the treatment of cancer 30
    • or anemia, or for transplantation. The final facility is a biorepository of different Salmonella genetic strains. In general, the biobanking groups are small, utilize different protocols and lack a unified approach to ethics, shipping, processing or storage. The Canadian BioSample Repository (CBSR) is an attempt to bring together all Alberta’s tissue banking with unified Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). Although affiliated with UofA, CBSR offers services across Alberta and Canada. It has specialized software that could eventually be applied to all Alberta’s tissue banking facilities, linking them together in a cloud computing environment. It also acts as support facility to clinical trials projects.Alberta’s Tissue Banks Facility Obtained From (Disease Type) Affiliation(Forzani & MacPhail) Colon Cancer Screening Cancer UofCCentre (CCSC) BiorepositoryACRI Alberta Cancer Research Unit/ ACCRU Cancer UofCAlberta Cancer Clinic Research Unit Biorepository(in SACRI)Alberta Cord Blood Bank (For use in cancer, anemia) EdmontonBrain Tumor Tissue Bank and Bio-Repository Cancer UofC (SACRI)Canadian BioSample Repository (CBSR) IBD; rheumatology; heart disease; bone and joint UofA disease; kidney, liver and blood diseasesCanadian Breast Cancer Foundation (CBCF) Tumor Cancer UofABankComprehensive Tissue Centre (For transplantation use) AHSInflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) Consortium IBD UofCTissue BankSalmonella Genetic Stock Centre ID UofCWomen & Childrens Health Research Institute (For use in cancer, anemia) UofA(WCHRI)Clinical Trials Support Units AIHS is facilitating and coordinating a new initiative, the Alberta Clinical Research Consortium (ACRC), to streamline clinical trials support in the province so that there will be a single point of contact (rather than the current four or more) for all clinical trials’ administrative activities. This should attract additional health research activity and investment to the province. ACRC includes AHS, the College of Physicians & Surgeons of Alberta, Covenant Health, UofA (representing NACTRC and others), UofC (representing CCCR and others) and the cancer research legacy groups (e.g., ACCRU). It aims to: • improve the efficiency of clinical research administrative processes across the province • standardize legal review guidelines for contracts and agreements related to clinical research 31
    • • establish provincial standards and opportunities for training of clinical researchers and staff. As part of the process for creating a single facility for clinical trials support, Alberta’s research ethics procedures are also being harmonized with the help of AIHS. In February 2011, the six provincial organizations with Research Ethics Boards signed the Research Ethics Reciprocity Agreement. This agreement allows for a harmonized ethics review process for multi-jurisdictional health research, i.e. the process of ethics review will be streamlined for multi-site health research. Work is underway to implement this agreement6.Clinical Trials Support Units in Alberta Facility Description AffiliationACRI Cancer Clinical Research Unit (ACCRU) Coordinates clinical research throughout Alberta. UofC & AHS Offers a single point of contact, ethical approvals, and contract negotiationsAHS Laboratory Services Business Performance Provides clinical laboratory services to clinical trials AHSResearch and Clinical TrialsCalgary Centre for Clinical Research (CCCR) Clinical trials and epidemiology co-ordination facility UofCCalgary Laboratory Services Provides clinical laboratory services to clinical trials AHSCanadian BioSample Repository (CBSR) Processes, stores, and retrieves tissue samples from UofA clinical trialsCanadian VIGOUR Centre (Virtual Coordinating Manages clinical trials of cardiovascular therapies UofACentre for Global Collaborative CardiovascularResearch)Northern Alberta Clinical Trials and Research A research and clinical trials network supporting and UofA & AHSCentre (NACTRC) managing clinical trialsPan Alberta Metabolomics Platform (PanAMP) Provides laboratory services to clinical trials UofA 32
    • Business Support Platforms Four institutions identified for this Asset Map offer business support services to health researchers wishing to translate and commercialize their findings. (NOTE: Similar services may exist, but business support and industrial activities were generally outside the scope of this report.)Business Support Platforms Facility Description AffiliationAlberta Centre for Advanced MNT Provides specialized services in key areas for the UofA &Products (ACAMP) commercialization of micro nano technology (MNT) products: Calgary (i) Marketing & Business Development; (ii) Product Development; (iii) Packaging and Assembly; (iv) Test and Characterization.Alberta Innovates Centre for A Centre for Research and Commercialization UofA/ AITFCarbohydrate ScienceAlberta Innovates Centre for A Centre for Research and Commercialization UofC/ AITFIntegrated Biomedical Technology(Biovantage Inc.)NuRx Provides people, equipment and facilities to help companies AITF grow by providing services that aid in the research, development and commercialization of novel products 33
    • OTHER HEALTH RESEARCH ENTITIES & FACILITIES Not all the facilities identified for this Asset Map fit well into the categories described above. The following two organizations have not been categorized: • Alberta Prion Research Institute • Alberta Water Research Institute (now operates as AI-EES Water Resources Strategic Area). In addition, many of the facilities which have been categorized above have a broad mandate that goes beyond the categories prescribed in this document. The majority of organizations undertaking wide- ranging activities are involved in research in specific disease areas or population health. These organizations are listed below.Other Health Research Organizations Facility/ AffiliationUofAAlberta Institute for Human NutritionAlberta Transplant Applied Genomics Centre (ATAGC)Bebensee Schizophrenia Research UnitBrain Neurobiology Research ProgramCentre for Health Evidence (CHE)Centre for Health Promotion StudiesCentre for Prions and Protein Folding DiseasesCommon Spinal Disorders Research Centre (CSD)Depression and Stress Disorder Research GroupHealth Research Innovation FacilityHuman Neurophysiology Lab.Institute for Stuttering Treatment and Research (ISTAR)Li Ka Shing Institute of Virology (formerly Alberta Institute for Viral Immunology [AIVI] and Centre of Excellence in ViralHepatitis Research)Membrane Protein Research GroupMolecular and Cell Biology of LipidsNeurochemical Research UnitPharmaceutical Orthopaedic Research Lab. (PORL)Psychotherapy Research GroupSignal Transduction GroupTeam to Prevent BlindnessUofA & AHSAleksandar Kostov Assistive Technology Research Lab 34
    • Facility/ AffiliationAutism Research CentreUofCInstitute for Biocomplexity and InformaticsMcCaig Institute for Bone & Joint HealthMental Health Centre for Education and ResearchPopulation Health Intervention Research Centre (PHIRC)Psychosis Research UnitUofLCanadian Centre for Behavioural NeuroscienceAHSEdmonton Scoliosis Research GroupKnowledge Translation All the facilities identified for this Asset Map engage in knowledge translation to some extent, but for a number of organizations knowledge translation (KT) is the “raison d’être”. These organizations are listed below.Alberta’s Health Research Knowledge Transfer Platforms Facility Description (Pillar) AffiliationACADRE – Alberta Network Environments Where Aboriginal communities and educational UofAfor Aboriginal Health Research institutions share knowledgeAlberta Centre for Injury Control and Main roles in injury prevention include education, UofAResearch promotion of healthy public policy, and knowledge translationAlberta Health Services (AHS) Office of Supports surgical research and evidence-based UofC & AHSSurgical Research introduction of new technologyAlberta Research and Innovation Centre in Coordinating efforts and facilitating communication AHSAddiction and Mental Health (ARIC) among a network of stakeholdersAlberta Research Centre for Health Supports and fosters the development of evidence-based UofAEvidence (previously Alberta Research practiceCentre for Child Health Evidence)Calgary Institute for Population and Public Aims to improve health care delivery and population UofCHealth (CIPPH) (incorporating former health through a shared research agenda and knowledgeCentre for Health and Policy Studies exchange between providers and researchers[CHAPS])Complementary & Alternative Research & Equips patients, families and health care providers with UofAEducation (CARE) the knowledge required to ensure CAM is safely administered and effectiveDepartment of Public Health Sciences Pursues and disseminates knowledge relevant to UofA 35
    • Facility Description (Pillar) Affiliation managing, monitoring, and improving the quality of community health status and health servicesHealth Research Transfer Network of Network that undertakes activities to strengthen the flow AIHSAlberta of knowledge between researchers, practitioners, patients, and policy makersiNFORMATICS Research Centre Dissemination of information and partnerships with UofC research institutions, businesses, and public organizationsInstitute for Continuing Care Education and Helps identify best practices in continuing care and UofA, AHS,Research (ICCER) encourages the uptake of them into education and others practiceInstitute of Health Economics (IHE) Provides policy relevant research and programs to UofA & support evidence-informed healthcare decision making Calgary and priority settingMedically At-Risk Driver Centre Provides a forum where researchers, policy makers, and UofA community stakeholders can work collaboratively on the implementation of policy and practicesRehabilitation Research Centre (RRC) Consults, provides resource materials and connects UofA people and organizations to relevant information and research 36
    • Networks These networks developed within provincial institutions and organizations.Alberta’s Health Research Networks Facility/ Affiliation Description (Pillar)UofAACADRE – Alberta Network Environments for Links expertise of Aboriginals, academics, government and communityAboriginal Health Research institutionsAlberta Asthma Centre Network of practitioners, interest groups and researchersAlberta Centre on Aging Links research and education groups and works in partnership with the government, regional health authorities, community groups, gerontological associations, and other organizationsImmunology Network (ImmuNet) Interdepartmental and multidisciplinary network at UofAInstitute for Continuing Care Education and Collaboration between the UofA, NorQuest College, CapitalCare, AHS,Research (ICCER) (with AHS & others) Excel Society, and Bethany SocietyNorthern Alberta Clinical Trials and Research Research and clinical trials networkCentre (NACTRC) (with AHS)UofCBioinformatics Innovation Centre (formerly Based at the University of Calgary with nodes in Edmonton, VancouverIntegrated and Distributed Bioinformatics and Winnipeg. Also manages BioMoby, an Information andPlatform for Genome Canada) Communications Technology network used by researchers across AlbertaCalgary Institute for Population and Public A virtual institute incorporating people at the University of CalgaryHealth (CIPPH) (incorporating former Centre and AHSfor Health and Policy Studies [CHAPS])Libin Cardiovascular Institute of Alberta (LCIA) Virtual institute that coordinates all cardiovascular research,(with AHS) education and patient care within both AHS and UofCUofA & CalgaryAlberta IBD Consortium Links clinicians, researchers and patients across the provinceSCI Alberta Group of scientists from UofA and UofC conducting translational research in the field of spinal cord injury (SCI)AHSAlberta Centre for Child, Family and Works in conjunction with nine Alberta child-serving ministries, theCommunity Research (ACCFCR) Government of Canada and numerous other partners and collaboratorsAlberta Research and Innovation Centre in Virtual centre of research excellence serving a network ofAddiction and Mental Health (ARIC) stakeholders (researchers, practitioners, policy makers and consumers) (under development)AIHSHealth Research Transfer Network of Alberta Province-wide network that undertakes activities to strengthen the flow of knowledge between researchers, practitioners, patients, and policy makers 37
    • KEY AND APPARENT STRENGTHSComparative Positioning One method of determining Alberta’s strengths in health research is to compare the province with other jurisdictions. A detailed review of other provinces or countries was beyond the scope of this project. However, limited data were available from information sourced as part of the project. These are described below in order of Alberta’s strengths: • Alberta led Canada in the number of Immunology papers published between 1982 and 2005, and consistently ranked second over Ontario and BC in Pharmacology & Pharmacy publications7. Whether it has maintained its leading position since is unknown. • In 2010, Alberta was fourth in Canada in the number of managed clinical trials. This is commensurate with the fact that Alberta has the fourth largest population8 - thus the province was average within Canada. • Alberta received 7.4% of Genome Canada Applied Human Health, Competition III and Science & Technology Platforms funding but has 10.8% of the population9. Thus, the province is punching below its weight in genomics. On the other hand, Alberta is home to one of Genome Canada’s Science and Technology Platforms, the Bioinformatics Innovation Centre (aka Integrated and Distributed Bioinformatics for Genome Canada) Platform in Calgary. • Alberta has no health related federally funded Networks of Centres of Excellence or Centres of Excellence for Commercialization and Research, although it does host the National Research Council of Canada’s (NRC) National Institute of Nanotechnology (NINT), which receives approximately $12 million in NRC funding each year10.In the past, the province was home to: • Canadian Obesity Network (CON) (UofA and Capital Health, 2005-2010) • Canadian Bacterial Diseases Network (CBDN) (UofC, 1989-2005) • Protein Engineering Network (PENCE Inc.) (UofA, 1989-2005) 11. • The province held the following ranking amongst all provinces between 1991 and 2005 in the number of papers published in the areas of: - Maternal and Child Health – 6th - Mental Health and Addictions – 5th - Health System Sustainability – 5th 38
    • The above list of rankings mainly concentrates on basic health research. In fact, many of Alberta’s strengths in health research, in the opinion of the experts interviewed for this Asset Map, are in the areas of basic research rather than farther along the research and innovation spectrum.Identified Strengths Stem Cells Alberta has some strength in stem cell research, particularly as concerns islet cells for diabetes. Research from the Alberta Diabetes Institute (ADI), has resulted in improved patient outcomes worldwide from ADI’s development of the Edmonton Protocol islet transplant diabetes treatment12. Nanotechnology Alberta is home to a pan-Canadian facility headquartered in Edmonton, the National Institute for Nanotechnology. Prion Research Alberta has significantly improved its national standing in prion research since 2005. Of the full scientific members of Prionet Canada, 41/91 (45%) at September 2010 were Alberta based researchers13. Furthermore, the province is home to three of Canada’s four Canada Research Chairs targeting prion disease and the only “Chair in Prion Disease”14. Alberta facilities include the Alberta Prion Research Institute and the Centre for Prions and Protein Folding Diseases. Genomics The comparative positioning point above suggests that Alberta is not one of the strongest provinces in genomics and it also lacks next generation sequencers. Nonetheless, Alberta has a large number of other assets for genomics research, the majority of which are essentially basic research facilities. This includes those areas in which Alberta has national prominence such as genotyping, bioinformatics and metabolomics. However, in terms of the latter, the Pan Alberta Metabolomics Platform (PanAMP) (which has international prominence) has become a clinical trials support unit as well as a basic research facility, thereby shifting its focus somewhat towards health outcomes. The metabolomics community at UofA has also identified novel metabolic biomarkers for asthma, pregnancy complications, bacterial pneumonia, and inflammatory arthritis15, although whether these have been developed is unknown. Furthermore, a metabolomics based company, Chenomx Inc., has been spun out of this university. 39
    • Virology Virology is considered to be an area of strength for Alberta, particularly in terms of basic research. Two virology facilities were identified for this report: Li Ka Shing Institute of Virology (formerly Alberta Institute for Viral Immunology [AIVI] and Centre of Excellence in Viral Hepatitis Research) and the Snyder Institute of Infection, Immunity & Inflammation. Imaging Imaging is identified as an area of strength in Alberta with thirty four imaging facilities in the province. Dr Gino Fallone and his team at the Cross Cancer Institute are developing a new radiation treatment device that is expected to change cancer treatment by better targeting solid tumours and allowing people with abdominal cancer access to radiation16. In addition, a group at Clark H. Smith Brain Tumour Centre, led by Dr Garnette Sutherland, has pioneered the development of intraoperative MRI technology, which can be used in the operating room to dramatically improve the safety and success of brain tumor surgeries and other procedures that require great precision and accuracy17. In the cardiovascular arena, Dr Matthias Frederich developed routine protocols for the clinical application of Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance (CMR), has developed novel software in cardiology diagnostics, and has established a spin-off company18. Cardiovascular Diseases The six cardiovascular facilities identified for this report are all closely aligned with improving health outcomes. For example, the Libin Cardiovascular Institute of Alberta is a provincial centre of excellence and has one of the largest cardiovascular magnetic resonance programs in the world19. The Alberta Cardiovascular & Stroke Research Centre (ABACUS) is an $18 million (M), translational “research hospital within a hospital”, while the Mazankowski Alberta Heart Institute provides broad- based patient care as well as conducting research. Libin, ABACUS, Mazankowski and VIGOUR are also major international centres for clinician-initiated randomized clinical trials in cardiovascular diseases. Cancer Alberta spends a significant amount on cancer research. Its $500M cancer research and prevention Legacy Fund (endowment) provides approximately $12M for cancer prevention and $13 million for cancer research per year. The cancer research program is matched by funding from the Alberta Cancer Foundation bringing the total provincial funding for research and prevention to approximately $40M/year. The focus on cancer research and innovation includes three biorepositories. However, there is concern about perceived poor returns on investment in term of patient outcomes.40
    • Neurological Diseases and Rehabilitative Medicine The province is strong in neuroscience research. Facilities include the world-renowned Hotchkiss Brain Institute, as well as facilities at the Universities of Alberta and Lethbridge. There are at least 24 endowed research Chairs in the neurosciences and 21 facilities that target neurological conditions. A number of neuroscience facilities target rehabilitation, e.g. Centre for Ambulatory Rehabilitation Research and Education (CARRE), Common Spinal Disorders Research Centre (CSD), Rehabilitation Neurosciences Research Group, SCI Alberta. Rehabilitative medicine is a major strength for the province and includes not just the aforementioned four facilities, but also the Institute for Reconstructive Sciences in Medicine (iRSM). The latter is a world leader in medical reconstructive sciences with an international reputation for innovation and advances in patient care and research. Engineering Engineering is considered a key strength with the province’s expertise in this field underpinning its strengths in nanotechnology, medical device development, and tissue bank management. The Schulich School of Engineering at UofC is the second largest engineering school in Canada. It has major research and education programs in biomedical engineering, as well as six endowed research Chairs in this discipline. Key facilities at Schulich identified for this Asset Map are the Centre for Bioengineering Research and Education (CBRE), Pharmaceutical Production Research Facility (PPRF), the Bone Imaging Lab and other facilities within the Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering Research Laboratories, and the Advanced Micronanosystems Integration Facility (AMIF) and other labs within Electrical and Computer Engineering Research. CBRE has expertise in the genome sciences, biomechanics, bioinformatics, biomaterials, cell and tissue engineering, and nanotechnology20. Many of the imaging innovations described above (e.g., those by Dr Garnette Sutherland and Dr Matthias Frederich), as well as many other bio-engineering advances, were developed by CBRE scientists21. Researchers at Schulich were also instrumental in developing the automated storage and retrieval facility at the Canadian BioSample Repository. Engineering is also strong at UofA. Key facilities include the National Institute for Nanotechnology (NINT) and the Peter S Allen MR Research Centre (formerly In Vivo NMR), as well as laboratories focused on rehabilitation engineering/ biomechanics, spinal cord injury, neuroprostheses, cryobiology, biomaterials, nanotechnology, and tissue engineering22.41
    • OPPORTUNITIES AND CHALLENGESOpportunities and Challenges in Areas of Strength The description of Alberta’s strengths in health research also touches on some of the following challenges and opportunities. • Basic Research. Many of the province’s strengths are in basic research including most of genomics and virology, and some stem cell, nanotechnology and prion research. A challenge for the researchers is to focus their research and to present their research findings in such a way that they can be taken up by others and applied to health improvements or population health. • Neurosciences. The province has major strengths in neurological research but, except for research that targets rehabilitation, much of it concerns fundamental knowledge with translation expertise generally lacking. • Cancer. There are opportunities for the cancer research within the province to better align with improved health outcomes. • Imaging. Although imaging is strong in the province, there are still significant opportunities to expand the outputs towards improved health outcomes.Other Challenges and Opportunities Challenges • Competition among the Universities of Alberta, Calgary and Lethbridge is still evident but it was thought that is could be partly reduced by group grants. However, competition continues to be supported by other government policies such as funding competitions and student recruitment, as well as lack of coordination between government departments (e.g. AHW and EAE). • AHRIS represents a new way of looking at health research and innovation in Alberta and involves a refocusing of provincial investments to translational activities as well as a top down approach to health research. It will be a challenge to bring all academic health researchers on board and shift their activities towards translation. However, there will also be opportunities for willing researchers to take advantage of the new funding systems. • University policies for promotion and tenure focus on scientific publications and research funding, not on innovation and translation. This is an issue for the province in trying to shift attention from basic to translational research. 42
    • • The demise of Alberta Heritage Foundation for Medical Research and its replacement by AIHS, as well as the replacement of the Alberta Ingenuity Fund by AITF, has resulted in concerns and uncertainty among many researchers who do not yet understand the role of the new entities. On the other hand, this change also offers opportunities to those who want to move forward within the government’s priority research areas. • Although many health research plans have been produced, there have been challenges in implementing them. In fact, many have remained just as plans, with no action taken. Whether and how AHRIS will be implemented on a practical level is unknown. • The lack of major health-based industry in the province is a challenge in terms of commercializing ideas from Alberta’s researchers. Opportunities • Alberta has a single healthcare system with two medical schools, two large cities, and a rural/urban divide that should be a hotbed for new innovations. • AITF’s accelerator program has the potential for world leadership in certain areas, such as nanotechnology. • “Group grants” from the funding agencies have been instrumental in bringing together researchers from different Alberta universities as collaborators and should continue. • Strong government and the Boards of all major institutions involved in health research need to push health research collaborations. Opportunities will be acted upon only with bold vision and leadership. • There are other opportunities to establish Innovation Platforms by encouraging collaborations among researchers within individual health research platforms and establishing additional networks among organizations. Ideas for Platform creation could also be obtained from other jurisdictions. For example, the European Commission supports the establishment and sustainability of Technology Platforms (which are essentially Innovation Platforms). These are led by industry and involve defining and acting upon research priorities23. • Often, use of core facilities is restricted, either formally or informally, to members of the department that houses the core24. Yet, one of the most cost-efficient ways in improving Alberta’s Innovation Platforms is to broaden their user base. To this end, information about the facilities needs to be effectively disseminated and the services marketed. This Asset Map helps in the dissemination but it is up to the facilities themselves to improve their marketing and service offerings.43
    • INNOVATION PLATFORM FACILITATORS There are a number of organizations and entities in place in Alberta which support the creation and/or development of health-related innovation platforms. These include:AIHS Ethics and Innovation Platforms Unit AIHS Ethics and Innovation Platforms unit provides ethics review services for community-based researchers. It also assists decision-makers, researchers and health practitioners with emerging ethics issues related to a range of knowledge-generating projects (including research and various types of applied projects; e.g., quality improvement and evaluation).Strategic Clinical Networks Strategic Clinical Networks (SCNs) are province-wide teams bringing together the experiences and expertise of health care professionals, researchers, government, communities and patients and their families to improve our health care system. Each network will focus on a different area of health with the goal to: • Improve the patient experience • Ensure care is available when it’s needed • Put strategies in place to keep Albertan’s healthy • Provide Albertans with the best health care for generations to come Six SCNs are underway: • Addiction and Mental Health • Bone and Joint Health • Cancer Care • Cardiovascular Health and Stroke • Obesity, Diabetes and Nutrition • Seniors’ Health Six more SCNs are scheduled to be in operation by March 2013: 44
    • • Complex Medicine (which will include the current Respiratory Clinical Network) • Maternal Health • Neurological Disease, ENT (ear, nose, throat) and Vision • Newborn, Child and Youth Health • Population Health and Health Promotion • Primary Care and Chronic Disease ManagementLaboratory Alberta Laboratory Alberta aims to take advantage of the opportunities involved in improving Alberta’s health care system and the province’s strengths in health research and innovation. The concept is to construct a single health care delivery-research infrastructure platform that: • Brings together and integrates all of Alberta’s health resources, turning Alberta into a giant health research laboratory • Provides unique opportunities for clinical, health services and population health research • Links biomedical with epidemiologic and clinical data for translational research • Facilitates translation of knowledge into improved health care practices and policies • Attracts talented researchers and grant funding to Alberta • Attracts industry investment to commercialize health research outputs • Utilizes the health systems expertise to generate economic benefits for Alberta. It will have four linked components: • A cross-sectoral provincial database housing data from the ministries of health, education, justice, social services, aboriginal services, industry and other relevant portfolios, in separate but linkable form (termed Alberta Data Haven) • The Alberta Clinical trials Consortium (described elsewhere) • Alberta Healthcare Improvement Inc., which will bring quality improvement innovations and efforts directly into the health care system to improve health outcomes and efficiencies • Alberta Biobank (presumably incorporating CBSR and the province’s other biobanks)25. 45
    • Campus Alberta Campus Alberta, a Government of Alberta initiative, offers the opportunity for the facilities at each of Alberta’s universities to be made available to all researchers within the province. It also aims to improve access to education and training through collaborations between all publicly funded post- secondary institutions and the apprenticeship and industry training system, thereby increasing the number of highly skilled people who can work in health research as well as other areas of importance to the province. Such collaborations allow: • Flexible transfer arrangements between institutions • High quality online learning offered by 15 institutions through eCampusAlberta and hands-on support for distance learners at over 85 northern Alberta learning sites • A common industry-developed provincial curriculum that allows apprentices to take any period of technical training at any Alberta post-secondary institution • Coordinated applications to any of Albertas public post-secondary institutions and electronic transfer of academic transcripts26.Centres for Research and Commercialization (CRC) The CRC program is one of AITF’s capacity building initiatives and includes two Centres that target health research (Table 8). CRCs consist of collaborative hubs that are fully integrated into Alberta’s universities, training Alberta’s top students, working with local and international industry partners, and providing a strong platform for Alberta’s next generation economy27.Centres for Research and Commercialization Centre DescriptionAlberta Innovates Centre for Includes investigators from both the Universities of Alberta and Calgary that tackleCarbohydrate Science ambitious, multidisciplinary research problems on carbohydrate structure and function. Research includes vaccine development, drug discovery, and synthetic biological materials, that have key medicinal and commercial applications. Works internationally with other academics, industry and government on key issues.Alberta Innovates Centre for Based at the UofC with an international network of academic and corporateIntegrated Biomedical Technology partnerships. Helps develop new medical devices, therapeutic products and(Biovantage Inc.) treatment delivery solutions. Specializes in biomedical engineering, particularly imaging and biosensors. 46
    • Academic Health Network The Academic Health Network (AHN) integrates health service delivery, teaching, and research, closely linking medical school faculty with all healthcare providers within both affiliated hospitals and their broader network of care28. The core of the academic health network is the UofA Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry and the UofC Faculty of Medicine. The UofA is affiliated with six patient care facilities and has 44 research institutes, centres and groups covering all clinical areas. The UofC is affiliated with five patient care facilities and has 11 research institutes and centres. 47
    • GLOSSARYAAFC Agriculture and Agri-Food CanadaAB AlbertaAHW Alberta Ministry of Health & WellnessAHRIS Alberta’s Health Research and Innovation StrategyAHS Alberta Health ServicesAIHS Alberta Innovates Health SolutionsAITF Alberta Innovates Technology FuturesCBSR Canadian BioSample RepositoryCFI Canada Foundation for InnovationCIHR Canadian Institutes of Health ResearchCofE Centres of ExcellenceCRC Centre for Research and CommercializationCRC Colorectal cancer (context distinguishes this from above use of abbreviation)CTU Clinical trials unit or study siteCTSU Clinical trials support unitDNA Deoxyribonucleic acidEAE Alberta Enterprise and Advanced EducationFPLC Fast protein liquid chromatographyGC Gas ChromatographyHPLC High performance liquid chromatographyIBD Inflammatory bowel diseaseIP WG AIHS Innovation Platforms Working GroupLC Liquid ChromatographyM MillionMH&A Mental Health and AddictionsMNT Micro nanotechnologyMS Mass spectrometryNMR Nuclear Magnetic ResonanceNSERC Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of CanadaPC PreclinicalRNA Ribonucleic acidRT-PCR Real-time polymerase chain reactionTCR T-cell receptor 48
    • METHODOLOGY NOTE: The data and information contained in this report are believed to be reliable and accurate up to August 31, 2011 but are not guaranteed for completeness or accuracy.Process The following steps were taken to develop the first draft of the Asset Map: The framework for the report was supplied by Alberta’s Health Research and Innovation Strategy (Alberta Advanced Education and Technology, Alberta Health and Wellness; August 2010) and the new mandate of AIHS. Discussions with key personnel at AIHS helped to frame the structure of the report. AIHS supplied the names of key individuals within Alberta’s health research sector who have expertise in the province’s health research assets. Using a Discussion Guide created for this purpose, five experts were interviewed (listed in Appendix 7) to obtain an indication of which facilities they thought may be Innovation Platforms and to help identify strengths, opportunities and challenges. • AIHS provided many of the major published sources used for this report including: • Alberta Innovates Technology Futures. Creating Opportunity. Alberta’s Nanotechnology Asset Map. 2009. www.albertatechfutures.ca/nanoAlberta/AlbertaNanoAssetMap.aspx. Accessed August 19, 2011. • Alberta Prion Institute Annual Report 2009-2010. • Genome Alberta. Genomics, proteomics, metabolomics and bioinformatics research in Alberta. Knowledge Asset Road Map development. July 2009. • Genome Alberta. Next-generation sequencing, genotyping, proteomics, metabolomics and bioinformatics. An Asset Road Map for Alberta. July 2010. • ICT Institute. Alberta Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Atlas. Version 1.0. February 2007 • Science-Metrix. Scientific Positioning of Alberta in Health Research Specialties. July 23, 2007. Stéphane Mercure, Grégoire Côté, Éric Archambault. • Science-Metrix. Scientometric Assessment of Alberta’s Performance in Three Research Areas. 15 January 2007. David Campbell, Grégoire Côté. • Tyrrell L, Palmer R. Alberta Health Services and Health Research Report. April 2009. 49
    • • Other publications used included: • Industry Canada. Canadian Asset Map for Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine. Summary www.ic.gc.ca/stemcells, accessed August 26, 2011. Full report: In press. • Information on key research centres and Centres of Excellence and Commercialization was obtained from the aforementioned reports and updated from those centres’ websites. • Additional information was obtained from searching, between August 15 and September 13: • The Universities of Alberta, Calgary and Lethbridge websites for research institutes, research centres, research groups, and research facilities with utility in health research • Alberta Health Services website for “research” • Alberta Innovates websites (www.albertainnovates.ca) on research institutions • The government of Alberta Advanced Education and Technology industry sector sites (www.advancededucation.gov.ab.ca/technology/industry.aspx) • The websites of researchers who have obtained grants from the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) (www.innovation.ca/projects/index.cfm). Note that the short time frame for this project did not provide the time to also search the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) or Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) project databases. CFI was chosen due to its tendency to approve infrastructure grants. • Google searches for “Innovation Platforms” and similar terms; “core facilities” and similar terms; “Alberta health research institute”; “Alberta health research centre”; “Alberta clinical trials”; Alberta “tissue bank”, “biobank”, “biorepository”, “registry”; and then an assessment of the websites identified • The Genome Canada and Networks of Centres of Excellence websites (www.genomecanada.ca; www.nce-rce.gc.ca) • Information on Alberta’s education facilities was obtained through Google searches “Alberta University”, “Alberta College”, “Alberta Community College”, and then a review of the websites identified. • Information obtained on facilities from all the aforementioned websites and reports was entered into a master Table (Appendix 2) and an Excel spreadsheet. • The data for each relevant facility were categorized according to university/ organization, pillar, type and sub-type of platform, and disease area (if relevant). • Analyses were conducted in Excel to determine numbers of facilities according to type and sub- type of platform, disease area, and university/ organization.50
    • Constraints Although extensive internet searches were made for all Alberta’s health research platforms, it is probable that some were not identified through the methodology used. Furthermore, some of the identified platforms may only be tangentially related to health research. The Asset Map has a heavy reliance on website information which may not be current or provide the sought-for information. Most of the institutions included in this Asset Map have a wide range of facilities and equipment, not all of which can be located on their websites Areas in which provincial asset maps have already been developed may be more thoroughly inventoried in this document. For example, the fact that so many genome sciences (sometimes referred to as “Omics” or just “genomics”) platforms have been identified may be an artifact of the sources used for this Asset Map. The two Genome Alberta Asset Maps29 did a thorough job of identifying equipment and facilities that could be used in genomics, proteomics, metabolomics, transcriptomics, nutrigenomics, pharmacogenomics and metagenomics (including lipidomics) research. Those Asset Maps also supply detailed descriptions of the genome sciences and their use in understanding and managing disease. This Asset Map does not identify all the Clinical Trials Units or study sites (CTUs) in the province, as this was beyond the scope of the original project. However, any CTUs found during the searching of Alberta’s health research assets are included in the inventory. As Alberta had 1,866 clinical trials in progress at the beginning of 2010 (clintrials.gov - a US registry of clinical trials conducted around the world), it is clear that not all CTUs are included in this inventory. One way of measuring Alberta’s strengths in health research is to compare it with other jurisdictions. A detailed review of other provinces or countries was not possible within the timeframe for this Asset Map. However, limited data were available from some of the sources used. 51
    • REFERENCES 52
    • 1 Alberta Innovates Health Solutions Strategic Framework, 2011.22 Core Facilities: Maximizing the Return on Investment. www.ScienceTranslationalMedicine.org, Vol 3 Issue 95, 10August 2011. Accessed from stm.sciencemag.org August 12, 2011.3 Alberta Innovates Technology Futures. Creating Opportunity. Alberta’s Nanotechnology Asset Map. 2009. p. 31.www.albertatechfutures.ca/nanoAlberta/AlbertaNanoAssetMap.aspx. Accessed August 19, 2011.4 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biosafety_level#Biosafety_level_3. Accessed September 2, 2011.5 Industry Canada. Canadian Asset Map for Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine. Summary www.ic.gc.ca/stemcells,accessed August 26, 2011. Full report: In press.6 Innovation Platform Working Group Notes April 19, 2011.7 Science-Metrix. Scientific Positioning of Alberta in Health Research Specialties. July 23, 2007. Stéphane Mercure,Grégoire Côté, Éric Archambault.8 Genome British Columbia. Clinical Trials and Preclinical Infrastructure Asset Map.www.genomebc.ca/profile/publications/asset-maps/. Accessed September 9, 2011.9 www.genomecanada.ca accessed September 12, 2011. Population data from Genome British Columbia. ClinicalTrials and Preclinical Infrastructure Asset Map. www.genomebc.ca/profile/publications/asset-maps/. AccessedSeptember 9, 2011.10 Alberta Innovates Technology Futures. Creating Opportunity. Alberta’s Nanotechnology Asset Map. 2009. p. 31.www.albertatechfutures.ca/nanoAlberta/AlbertaNanoAssetMap.aspx. Accessed August 19, 2011.11 The only federal Network of Centres of Excellence located in Alberta is Carbon Management Canada in Calgary(focused on the oil, gas and coal sector). www.nce-rce.gc.ca/NetworksCentres-CentresReseaux/Index_eng.asp.Accessed August 23, 2011.12 Industry Canada. Canadian Asset Map for Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine. Summary www.ic.gc.ca/stemcells,accessed August 26, 2011. Full report: In press.13 www.prionetcanada.ca. Accessed August 20, 2011.14 Frank R. Jirik, Canada Research Chair in Molecular Medicine and Transgenic Research, UofC; Christopher Power,Canada Research Chair in Neurological Infection and Immunity, UofA; David Westaway, Canada Research Chair inPrion Disease, UofA.www.chairs-chaires.gc.ca. Accessed September 12, 2011.15 Genome Alberta. Next-generation sequencing, genotyping, proteomics, metabolomics and bioinformatics. AnAsset Road Map for Alberta. July 2010.16 http://www.edmontonjournal.com/health/Cross+Cancer+Institute+sets+standard+treatment+abdominal+cancers/5267957/story.html. Accessed September 8, 2011.17 www.ucalgary.ca/braintumourcentre/node/105. Accessed September 8, 2011.18 www.ucalgary.ca/bme/research/advances. Accessed September 12, 2011.19 www.libin.ucalgary.ca/bios/bio.php?bio=Friedrich. Accessed September 8, 2011.20 http://schulich.ucalgary.ca and www.ucalgary.ca/bme/research. Accessed August 26, 2011.21 www.ucalgary.ca/bme/research/advances. Accessed September 12, 2011.22 www.bme.med.ualberta.ca/Home/Research/Groups/. Accessed August 31, 2011.23 European Technology Platforms. http://cordis.europa.eu/technology-platforms/home_en.html. Accessed August17, 2011.
    • 24 Farber GK, Weiss L. Core Facilities: Maximizing the Return on Investment. www.ScienceTranslationalMedicine.org,Vol 3 Issue 95, 10 August 2011. Accessed from stm.sciencemag.org August 12, 2011.25 www.med.ualberta.ca/Library/Documents/academic_plan.pdf. Accessed August 31, 2011.26 www.advancededucation.gov.ab.ca/post-secondary/campusalberta.aspx. Accessed August 26, 2011.27 www.albertatechfutures.ca/CapacityBuildingPrograms/CapacityBuildingInitiatives/CentresforResearchandCommercialization.aspx. Accessed August 17, 2011.28 Defined in Tyrrell L, Palmer R. Alberta Health Services and Health Research Report. April 2009, p. 13: An AcademicHealth Centre is .. a constellation of functions and organizations committed to improving the health of patients andpopulations through the integration of their roles in research, education, and patient care to produce theknowledge and evidence base that becomes the foundation for both treating illness and improving health. Theintegration involves more than the simultaneous provision of education, research and patient care. It requires thepurposeful linkage of these roles so that research develops the evidence base, patient care applies and refines theevidence base, and education teaches evidence-based and team-based approaches to care and prevention.29 (1) Genome Alberta. Genomics, proteomics, metabolomics and bioinformatics research in Alberta.Knowledge Asset Road Map development. July 2009.(2) Genome Alberta. Next-generation sequencing, genotyping, proteomics, metabolomics andbioinformatics. An Asset Road Map for Alberta. July 2010.