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Atlantic Cancer Consortium Gets $3.6M to Advance Precision Oncology Research in Canada

NEW YORK – A group of Canadian institutions that together are known as the Atlantic Cancer Consortium on Thursday said they've garnered $3.6 million in funding, enabling them to advance their precision oncology research plans.

The ACC, which launched in 2019 with $150 million in seed funding from the Canadian government, involves dozens of researchers from nine centers across Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Newfoundland and Labrador. The consortium will use the latest funding to conduct five precision oncology-focused projects over two years. The ACC receives financial support from national and provincial partners including foundations and nonprofits across Canada, as well as industry players like AstraZeneca Canada, Pfizer Canada, and Roche.

The projects the ACC will advance in the next two years include launching the Atlantic Canada Biobank Consortium, which will collect biological material and clinical data from patients treated within ACC institutions; setting up a bioinformatics core for data sharing among the centers; bolstering a training program for young investigators; and launching two specific research projects focused on lung and colorectal cancers, respectively.

After two years, the regional members of the ACC will join the nationally active Terry Fox Research Institute's Marathon of Hope Cancer Centers Network, to ensure that the precision treatments advanced through their research are available to all Canadian cancer patients. The Marathon of Hope Cancer Centers Network is a federally funded precision oncology-focused network that also includes the Quebec Cancer Consortium, the BC Cancer Consortium, and the Princess Margaret Cancer Consortium.

"This collaboration in our Atlantic region is a key milestone in our quest to create a pan-Canadian network of cancer research centers that is not only transformational but is also inclusive and truly representative of our diverse Canadian reality," Jim Woodgett, president and scientific director of the Terry Fox Research Institute, said in a statement.