Government of Canada highlights investment of $3.7M in research projects at Memorial University of Newfoundland

News release

March 12, 2019 – St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador – Canadian Institutes of Health Research

Canada is home to highly trained and creative health researchers, and the Government of Canada is proud to support their important work.

Today, while touring the research facilities at Memorial University of Newfoundland, the Honourable Seamus O’Regan, Minister of Indigenous Services, on behalf of the Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Minister of Health, highlighted a recent federal investment in health research.

The $3.7M awarded to Memorial University researchers is part of a $275 million national investment to support Canadian researchers studying the full spectrum of health issues affecting the lives of Canadians. This investment in health research supports our economy and creates high-quality middle-class jobs. Every $100 million invested in health research represents 1,800 jobs for researchers and trainees.

Minister O’Regan met with grant recipients at Memorial University to celebrate their achievements and to learn more about their research projects. A highlight of the visit included meeting with Dr. Sheila Garland, who received funding to study ways of treating memory and concentration problems and insomnia in cancer survivors. The Minister also met with Dr. Qi Yuan, whose lab is investigating new methods for the early detection of Alzheimer’s disease. 


“Investments in health research are some of the most important that we can make as a nation. These federally funded projects hold the potential for scientific advancements, new treatments, and improved quality of life for Canadians living with a variety of health conditions, while creating high-quality middle-class jobs at hospitals and universities across the country.”

The Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Minister of Health

“From their research into Alzheimer’s diseases to Type 2 diabetes and heart attacks, researchers at Memorial University of Newfoundland are shedding new light on health issues that have touched the lives of so many in this province, and across the country. On behalf of the Minister of Health, Ginette Petitpas-Taylor, and our entire government, I thank all the researchers for their hard work and dedication and congratulate them on receiving this new funding.”

The Honourable Seamus O’Regan, Minister of Indigenous Services

“Health research has the power to help us tackle some of the most pressing challenges facing us as a society, and Canadians should be proud of the incredible work being done from coast to coast to coast. As a researcher myself, I can say that the work is rarely glamourous—but it is always worthwhile, and I am excited to watch these CIHR-funded projects unfold.”

Michael J. Strong, President, Canadian Institutes of Health Research

“Through the innovative work led by our teams of multidisciplinary researchers, Memorial University is addressing health care challenges directly affecting our communities and improving health outcomes for all Canadians. I thank our federal government for its continued commitment as Memorial builds specialized research capacity.”

Dr. Gary Kachanoski, President and Vice-Chancellor, Memorial University

Quick facts

  • The projects funded through the $275M investment are supported by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)’s largest funding program.

    • This program, called the Project Grant program, is designed to capture ideas with the greatest potential to advance health research and the health care system.
    • It supports projects of varying sizes and duration through a highly competitive and rigorous review process.
    • CIHR runs two Project Grant competitions per year.
    • The results from the latest competition were released in January 2019, and the funding ($275M) will begin on April 1, 2019. 
  • Eighty-two of the grants from the latest competition were awarded to early career researchers (those within the first five years of their first academic appointment).

  • Eleven of the grants funded are focused on Indigenous health research. CIHR is proud to support these projects as part of its commitment to invest 4.6% of its annual budget in Indigenous health research.

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Media Relations
Canadian Institutes of Health Research

Thierry Bélair
Office of Ginette Petitpas Taylor
Minister of Health

At the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) we know that research has the power to change lives. As Canada's health research investment agency, we collaborate with partners and researchers to support the discoveries and innovations that improve our health and strengthen our health care system.

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