FedDev Ontario Invests in Biomedical Engineering and Advanced Manufacturing Centre


The Government of Canada supports the development of new health technologies that have the potential to improve the quality of life of all Canadians, while creating well-paying jobs for the middle class and those working hard to join it. As part of this program, McMaster University will receive an investment of up to $11.96 million.

This non-repayable contribution, through FedDev Ontario's Investing in Commercialization Partnerships (ICP) initiative, will bring together 35 partners in the life sciences, including university-based researchers at McMaster and the German-based Fraunhofer Institute for Cell Therapy and Immunology IZI.

The Government's Innovation Agenda aims to make Canada a global centre for innovation – one that creates jobs, drives growth across all industries and improves the lives of all Canadians. This investment is a prime example of that vision in action.

This investment will go towards the creation and operation of the Fraunhofer Project Centre for Biomedical Engineering and Advanced Manufacturing (BEAM). The funding will also be used to upgrade a 20,000-square foot facility in the McMaster Innovation Park.

About McMaster University's Fraunhofer Project Centre for Biomedical Engineering and Advanced Manufacturing (BEAM)

This project will create 74 full-time equivalent jobs, while supporting the development of 35 novel technologies for eye care, point-of-care medical devices and cancer treatments, including:

  • Ophthalmic Biomaterials (eye care) – The development of a new eye medication delivery system that will ensure proper dosage (currently medications are water soluble and during administration part of the medication is lost through tears).
  • Point of Care – The development of new testing devices that could be used at the doctor's office or at home to detect the presence of E. coli and salmonella, as examples, and have rapid response times, much like home pregnancy tests.
  • Cell Therapy for use in Cancer Treatment – The development of new devices for use in hospitals that will allow cancer patients to use their own blood cells during treatment.

For this project, the Fraunhofer Institute will have staff located at the centre in Hamilton to assist companies with biotechnology products and process innovations.

For more information, visit the McMaster University BEAM website.

About McMaster University

McMaster University, located in Hamilton, Ontario, operates six academic facilities and over 50 research networks that support almost 25,000 students. McMaster University is a leader in health sciences research, and is recognized internationally in biomedical innovation. In 2015, McMaster ranked seventh on the 2015 Canadian Innovation Leaders list of top Canadian research universities.

Previous FedDev Ontario Funding Received by McMaster University

Table: Previous FedDev Ontario Funding Received by McMaster University
Program Project Description FedDev Ontario Contribution (up to) Anticipated Number of Jobs to be Created by Project Leveraged Funding
Prosperity Initiative
Funding was provided to create the McMaster Automotive Resource Centre (MARC), which offers resources for industry, government and academics working on hybrid powertrains, integrated automotive software, and electric vehicle infrastructure. $11,500,000
Total project cost: $27,401,490
Five full-time jobs were maintained and 70 full-time equivalent construction jobs were created during project implementation. This funding leveraged $15,901,490 from McMaster University, including $4,757,852 in donated equipment funded through McMaster University, the Ontario government and industry partners.
Graduate Enterprise Internship initiative
Funding was provided to place recent graduates and graduate students of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) programs in internships with small- and medium-sized businesses in southern Ontario. $1,133,000
Total project cost: $3,946,250
Placement of 60 recent STEM graduates or graduate students. This funding leveraged $2,813,250 in private sector investment.
Scientists and Engineers in Business initiative
Funding was provided to assist graduates and graduate students in STEM fields to develop their business skills and launch or expand their business ventures in southern Ontario. $787,500
Total project cost: $1,552,500
53 STEM students or graduates received training and 26 new businesses were created by the end of the project. This funding leveraged $765,000 in private sector investment.

About Fraunhofer-Gesellshaft

The Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft is Europe's largest organization for applied research. Fraunhofer operates 67 institutes and research units in Germany and has established subsidiaries and representative offices in Europe, North and South America and Asia.

In 2012, FedDev Ontario provided $13.7 million to Western University in London to support the creation of the Fraunhofer Project Centre for Composites Research. This centre is North America's premier facility for the development, validation, and industrial-scale testing of lightweight and advanced materials, products and related applications. To date, results include 19 collaborations with small- and medium-sized businesses, $1.7 million in contracts secured and five new processes and/or technologies developed.

FedDev Ontario's Investing in Commercialization Partnerships Initiative

The Investing in Commercialization Partnerships (ICP) initiative supports business-led partnerships with a focus on developing globally-competitive products and services, or innovation platforms that can demonstrate commercial value.

Post-secondary institutions and incorporated not-for-profit organizations, publicly-funded colleges and universities, research institutions, and industry associations located in southern Ontario are eligible to apply under this initiative for projects that are business-led and focus on new technologies or platforms with demonstrated commercial value.

For more information, visit the Investing in Commercialization Partnerships webpage.

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