Government of Canada announces new investment in diabetes research

News release

Funding includes support for partnership with JDRF Canada on type 1 diabetes research

August 13, 2021— Ottawa, ON — Canadian Institutes of Health Research

Diabetes is one of the top chronic diseases affecting Canadians. Over 3 million Canadians, or 8.8% of the population, have diagnosed diabetes and 6.1% of Canadian adults are at high risk of developing diabetes. The increasing prevalence of diabetes in Canada and the negative effects of COVID-19 on people with diabetes have underscored the importance of continuing to invest in diabetes research, treatment, and prevention.

Budget 2021 proposed new investments in diabetes research, surveillance, prevention and the development of a national framework for diabetes. As part of these investments, the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Health, today announced that the Government of Canada, through the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), will recommit to the JDRF-CIHR Partnership to Defeat Diabetes, investing up to $15M, to be matched by JDRF Canada and its donors, for a total research impact of $30M.

Since its inception in 2017, the JDRF-CIHR Partnership to Defeat Diabetes has funded several innovative clinical trials and translational research projects to accelerate the development of novel treatment approaches for people with type 1 diabetes (T1D). Renewal of this Partnership will support a shared vision of improved care, early treatment, and advancing research into cures for individuals living with T1D.

This new investment builds on Canada’s long history of leadership in diabetes research, beginning with the discovery of insulin in 1921. To commemorate this life-saving discovery, CIHR launched 100 Years of Insulin: Accelerating Canadian Discoveries to Defeat Diabetes in 2019. This initiative provides new research funding for Canadian scientists to collaborate with national and international partners to discover new ways to prevent and treat diabetes and its associated complications.

The Government of Canada is working towards establishing a national framework for diabetes, following the passage of Bill C-237 by Parliament in June 2021. The Government will develop the framework in consultation with a number of stakeholders, including Diabetes Canada, JDRF, provinces and territories, Indigenous groups, and other stakeholders and will help support improved access to prevention and treatment, and better health outcomes for Canadians.


“Canadian researchers have made great progress towards more effective diabetes prevention and treatment. The Government of Canada will continue investing in research that will help improve the well-being of people living with diabetes, driving efforts towards a potential cure. This research will be an important component of our national diabetes framework.”

The Honourable Patty Hajdu
Minister of Health

“CIHR’s Institute of Nutrition, Metabolism and Diabetes is pleased to collaborate with national and international partners to fund research that will help develop new preventive and therapeutic solutions for people living with diabetes, and reduce the impact of diabetes on individuals, families and communities.”

Dr. Norman Rosenblum
Scientific Director, CIHR Institute of Nutrition, Metabolism and Diabetes

“JDRF Canada welcomes the Government of Canada’s commitment to renew the JDRF-CIHR Partnership to Defeat Diabetes—a partnership that will take us into an era of research focused on moving beyond insulin therapy to giving people with type 1 diabetes freedom from their disease. We are grateful to our community and our donors for enabling us to continue supporting crucial diabetes research during these challenging times.”

Dave Prowten
President and CEO, JDRF

“Diabetes Canada is thrilled with the government’s commitment to a national diabetes framework and to diabetes research—which will help improve the quality of life of millions of people living with the disease—as we can’t wait another 100 years to end diabetes. We look forward to collaborating with the government to develop this framework, which is inspired by the principles articulated in Diabetes 360.”

Laura Syron
President and CEO, Diabetes Canada

Quick facts

  • Diabetes is a chronic condition that occurs when the body cannot sufficiently produce, or properly use insulin, to absorb sugar.

  • The prevalence of Canadians living with type 1 or type 2 diabetes is increasing at an average rate of 3.3% per year.

  • Since 2015, the Government of Canada, through the Canadian Institutes of Health Research has invested more than $235 million in diabetes research.

  • JDRF has been part of nearly every major scientific breakthrough in T1D research worldwide since 1970.

  • Budget 2021 invests $35 million for diabetes initiatives, including research, surveillance, and prevention, and the development of a national framework for diabetes. This funding will also support novel approaches to diabetes prevention and promote the development and testing of new interventions to reduce the risks associated with type 2 diabetes.

Associated links


Office of the Honourable Patty Hajdu
Minister of Health

Media Relations
Canadian Institutes of Health Research

Monica Kocsmaros
Vice President, External Relations
JDRF Canada

Pilar Iglesias
National Communications Manager
Diabetes Canada

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