Led by Guillaume Paré, Director of CRLB-GMEL laboratory and a Senior Scientist at PHRI, and Salim Yusuf, Executive Director of PHRI, the Biomarker Discovery Partnership Program was initiated in November 2019.
The program aims to identify novel blood biomarkers to predict coronary artery disease, stroke, heart failure, kidney diseases and diabetes, and link them to genetic markers using sophisticated analysis conducted in the laboratory located at PHRI in Hamilton, Canada.
The program will integrate detailed clinical information with advanced laboratory investigations including proteomics (>1,000 proteins per sample), high-throughput genotyping and DNA sequencing, epigenetics and metabolomics.
PHRI has invested for more than 25 years in creating Canada’s largest research biobank, with about four million aliquots of blood and urine linked to clinical data. The Clinical Research Laboratory and Biobank joined forces with the Genetic Molecular and Epidemiology Laboratory in early 2021.
Using advanced analytic and bioinformatics tools, including Mendelian randomization and artificial intelligence, in the CRLB-GMEL laboratory, the Biomarker Discovery Partnership Program is expected to identify new mechanisms for the causation of various diseases.
How much of a role genetics, environment and behaviour each play in individuals’ health – the long standing ‘nature versus nurture’ question – has been boosted enormously in recent years with the introduce of ‘omics (collective technologies used to explore roles, relationships and actions of the various types of molecules that make up cells).
The program is supported by substantial funds from Bayer, along with grants and investments from the Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR) and the Hamilton Health Sciences Research Institute (HHSRI).