News Release: Government of Canada Invests in Research to Advance Patient Care

See original release here

Government of Canada supports research and development of miniature probe for medical application

Development of an imaging and tissue cutting probe for guided neuro surgeries is expected to improve patient survival rates and create 12 highly-skilled positions in Nova Scotia’s life sciences sector. This includes nine placements for graduate students to help them access the innovative jobs of today and tomorrow.
The miniature endoscope uses ultrasound for both imaging and precision cutting during surgery. Small enough for surgeons to insert into the brain through a small hole, it will assist in the diagnosis and treatment of serious conditions such as blood clots and brain tumors. It also has application in minimally invasive cardiac procedures.
The Government of Canada is making a $2,685,540 investment over five years in the Nova Scotia Health Authority (NSHA) to develop a miniature endoscope prototype.
The federal funding was announced today by Darrell Samson, Member of Parliament for Sackville-Preston-Chezzetcook, on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA).
Canadian-based Synaptive Medical Inc. and Conavi Medical Inc. are each providing $250,000 in cash and $150,000 of in-kind support to assist with the development of this advanced ultrasound technology. The NSHA will license the prototype to Synaptive Medical Inc. who intends to bring the device through the regulatory process and commercialize it for surgical applications, including neuro surgery. Conavi Medical will use the device for cardiovascular applications.
Canada’s Innovation Agenda aims to make this country a global centre for innovation—one that creates jobs, drives growth across all industries and improves the lives of all Canadians‎. The Government of Canada’s investment is provided through ACOA’s Atlantic Innovation Fund. The Atlantic Innovation Fund encourages partnerships among private sector firms, universities, colleges and other research institutions to develop and commercialize new or improved products and services in Atlantic Canada.
Quotes “The work of the Nova Scotia Health Authority exemplifies Canada’s readiness to participate in the global innovation race, competing with countries around the world for the most talented people, the newest technologies and the fastest-growing companies. That is why the Government of Canada is committed to supporting projects such as this, which enhance Atlantic Canada’s ability to compete in the global marketplace.” The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for ACOA   “Nova Scotia’s life sciences sector is thriving due to our R&D capabilities and highly trained individuals. It is innovation like this that provides high quality jobs for our educated workforce, helping to attract and retain talent in the region. The NSHA is setting the bar internationally for excellence in hi-resolution ultrasound technology, creating economic spinoffs right here at home.” Darrell Samson, Member of Parliament for Sackville-Preston-Chezzetcook   “I think the impact of this investment will happen in two areas: it will lead to healthcare technology that will improve cancer diagnostics and therapeutics within the brain; and, it will also have a significant economic impact as we are currently developing some of the most advanced ultrasound technology in the world. Moving ahead, we are excited to work with international leaders in life sciences R&D, such as Synaptive Medical and Conavi Medical.” Dr. Jeremy Brown, Associate Professor, Depts. of Biomedical Engineering and Electrical Engineering, Dalhousie University; and, Affiliated Scientist, Nova Scotia Health Authority   “As a medical device and technology company based in Toronto, Synaptive welcomes opportunities to work with industry and research partners across Canada. Partnering with the Nova Scotia Health Authority and Conavi Medical presents an exciting opportunity to leverage our expertise in surgery, ultrasound and medical imaging while developing a product that stands to benefit patients in Canada and around the world.” Cameron Piron, President and Co-Founder, Synaptive Medical Inc.   “Dr. Brown and his team in Halifax have a strong track record of developing world-leading medical technologies that will provide benefits to patients by enabling precision guided treatments for complex conditions that impact both quality and quantity of life. Conavi Medical and Synaptive Medical are examples of Canadian scale-up companies that are demonstrating how Canada is evolving from a primary consumer of medical technologies, to an emerging provider of advanced solutions for patients and healthcare providers around the world.” Dr. Brian Courtney, Executive Chairman, Conavi Medical Inc., Assistant Professor, Dept. of Medicine, University of Toronto and Clinician-Scientist, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
Quick Facts
  • ACOA’s innovation programming, which includes the Atlantic Innovation Fund (AIF) and the Business Development Program (BDP), is designed to help bring to market new products, technologies and services that will improve the competitiveness and productivity of the Atlantic economy.
  • In any given year, approximately 296 Nova Scotia Health Authority researchers are engaged in more than 1,300 research projects. This translates into about $28M in annual research revenues and provides support to more than 360 dedicated research personnel positions, including 150 experienced research coordinators.
  • In any given year, approximately 296 Nova Scotia Health Authority researchers are engaged in more than 1,300 research projects. This translates into about $28M in annual research revenues and provides support to more than 360 dedicated research personnel positions, including 150 experienced research coordinators.

Appili Therapeutics Awarded $2.8M From ACOA to Fund Clinical Trials

Clostridium difficile – through clinical trials to be ready for market approval. “Having ACOA recognize the potential of our antibiotic reformulation to become a new weapon against anaerobic infections is outstanding,” said Kevin Sullivan, CEO of Appili Therapeutics. “This AIF funding supports our strategy to advance ATI-1501 into human clinical trials as soon as possible.” Appili plans to take the antibiotic into clinical trials this year and is presently manufacturing the clinical batch of ATI-1501 to good manufacturing practices (GMP), the standard required by the Health Canada and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). ATI-1501 is a reformulation of metronidazole, a front-line treatment for anaerobic bacterial infections, including C. difficile.  Over 10 million metronidazole prescriptions are issued in the U.S. annually. The bitter taste of the metronidazole tablets results in poor patient compliance, which leads to the spread of infections and recurrent infections within the patients.  In particular, reluctance to complete the prescribed course of antibiotics is highly problematic among children and the elderly with swallowing issues, who must crush and re-suspend tablets to ingest the metronidazole. ATI-1501 has been optimized to improve palatability, which should significantly reduce issues with non-compliance. Once ingested, ATI-1501 kills anaerobic bacteria by interfering with their DNA, leading to bacterial cell death and clears up the infection. About Appili Therapeutics Appili is dedicated to identifying, acquiring and advancing novel therapeutics for infectious disease. The company has two anti-infective programs, ATI-1501 and ATI-1503, in its pipeline. ATI-1501 is a taste-masked treatment for anaerobic infections, including C. difficile. Appili’s second product, ATI-1503, is a novel antibiotic with broad potential to treat deadly Gram-negative infections such as Klebsiella pneumoniae. These drug-resistant infections have been identified by the U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC) as posing the highest threat to human health. For more information visit -30-

Media Relations Contact: Investor Relations Contact:
Jennifer Cameron Kevin Sullivan, CEO, Appili Therapeutics
T: 902-209-4704 E:

News Release: Athletigen and Kinduct Team up to Harness Athletic Potential

here HALIFAX, Nova Scotia – February 14, 2017 — Kinduct Technologies, a data and analytics software provider, and Athletigen Technologies Inc., a leader in proprietary human performance insights and genetic analytics provider, today announced that Kinduct’s software platform will soon incorporate Athletigen’s genetic insights. “The partnership with Kinduct is an exciting opportunity, with both companies focused on pushing the limits of human performance, ” says Athletigen CEO, Dr. Jeremy Koenig. “Clients will now have access to genetic markers combined with performance data, biometric scores and subjective inputs to provide a comprehensive view of the athlete to help understand and improve their in-game performance.” Athletigen’s proprietary platform analyzes an athlete’s DNA to empower coaches and athletes with actionable insights to inform peak performance in training and competition. The Kinduct platform enables organizations to analyze athlete data collected from different sources and then use those insights to inform decisions and drive continuous improvement in human performance. Koenig added, “Each athlete is made for greatness, and we are one step in the journey to harnessing their maximum potential.” “Athletigen analyses genetic markers that help athletes understand where their performance strengths and weaknesses truly lie,” says Dr. Travis McDonough, Kinduct Founder and CEO. “The partnership with Athletigen and the integration of their genetic insights into Kinduct’s platform will create a powerful tool for assessing an athlete’s condition and defining the optimal training and recovery programs.” Kinduct’s technology platform, currently used by teams in the NHL, MLB, NFL, NBA, MLS, and NCAA allows for a two-way information exchange between coaches and athletes. Their Athlete Management System (AMS) gives teams the ability to collect, analyze, and act upon a wide range of player performance data and content such as training results, sleep schedules, maximum acceleration, deceleration, and heart rate. All of the information captured or calculated within the Kinduct platform supports informed decisions on personalized training and injury recovery programs for every athlete. This new partnership with Athletigen adds genetics as an important new layer of data. “We see this combination of performance data and genetics as an important step in maximising player performance while reducing injury risk,” says McDonough. “Our clients can gain access to each athlete’s genetic foundation to better explain the data we capture.” -30- About Athletigen Athletigen is a leader in proprietary human performance insights and genetic analytics. In 2016, Athletigen launched Iris™, the first of its kind, a personalized performance genomics app suite that merges an athlete’s genetic predispositions with daily monitoring data, empowering coaches and athletes with actionable insights. The evolution of our product is driven by intense user research conducted with world class, Olympic and Paralympic athletes. Through genomic innovation with strategic partners, Athletigen works to deliver the most advanced research findings in human performance to its customers. About Kinduct Kinduct is a leading data and analytics software provider. Kinduct’s highly secure, cloud-based platform allows human performance and sports organizations to spend less time managing their data and more time using it to inform decisions, promote constant improvement and produce exceptional results. Kinduct’s Athlete Management System is integrated with the best and brightest companies in the wearables, assessment and data collection sector. Kinduct is the software provider of choice for many professional and elite level sport organizations in the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, MLS and other professional or elite leagues. Kinduct’s investors include Intel Capital, CFFI Ventures Inc., and Elysian Park Ventures. Media Contacts: Athletigen Bryce Crosby T: 902.440.2957 E:  Kinduct Sean Williams T: 902.220.5945 E:


Funding announced for internship program that partners research with industry

See full story by Sara Ericsson in Queens County Advance

CORNWALLIS, N.S. – Nova Scotia’s provincial government has announced funding for internships in research and innovation aimed at creating work opportunities for Nova Scotia students and companies.

It was announced Feb. 6 at Acadian Seaplants in Cornwallis that $705,000 in funding will create 170 internships over the next three years. Sixty of these internships will take place at Acadian Seaplants, in partnership with Dalhousie University and the Mitacs Accelerate Program. The company, which processes seaweed to create products for numerous agricultural and chemical uses, has a long history of partnering with researchers to deliver cutting-edge products. President and CEO JP Deveau said his company “sees research as a way of life,” and that partnerships between industry, government and research institutions are key to “working together to create technologies we can export around the world.” Kelly Regan, Minister of Labour and Advanced Education, also attended Monday’s event, speaking about creating opportunities for recent university graduates. “Hiring people that we invest in early… will help create a better Nova Scotia,” she said.]]>