At OICR, we focus on conducting and enabling cancer research that improves health outcomes and quality of life for patients while maximizing the economic benefit of this work for the people of Ontario.
Celebrating our achievements and milestones reminds us of the important impact of our work as we continue to pursue our vision of ‘Cancer solved together’.
We collaborate with researchers across Ontario and beyond to mobilize the province’s research strengths around key cancer priorities.
OICR’s Computational Biology group has led the development of the largest international cancer genomic data sharing consortium, the ICGC. The ICGC has collected, analyzed and shared the genomes of nearly 25,000 patient tumours, enabled in large part by the tools and data portals created by OICR’s in-house team. This database, which has been used by researchers from 700 institutions worldwide, helps provide the critical mass of information needed to develop better ways of diagnosing, treating and preventing cancer. ICGC continues today as ICGC-ARGO, analyzing specimens of 100,000 cancer patients along with high-quality clinical data.
Led by OICR and built off ICGC data, the PCAWG initiative has analyzed 2,600+ whole genomes and uncovered nearly all cancer-causing mutations, some of which occur long before diagnosis. This has opened new avenues for diagnosis and treatment. The project has completed the most comprehensive study of whole cancer genomes to date, significantly improving our fundamental understanding of cancer and signposting new directions for its diagnosis and treatment.
The Global Alliance for Genomics and Health (GA4GH), led in part by OICR, has mobilized more than 500 organizations worldwide to develop common standards and tools that enable responsible genomic data sharing within a human rights framework. GA4GH continues to accelerate progress in genomics research and human health.
We conduct and enable cutting-edge translational cancer research to bring discoveries from the lab to the clinic.
OICR’s PanCuRx initiative has demonstrated that genome sequencing can help inform pancreatic cancer treatment decisions in a clinically relevant timeline, which was previously thought to be unfeasible due to the disease’s high fatality rates and aggressive nature. The initiative has also mapped out how pancreatic cancer evolves over time and furthered our understanding of the disease’s subtypes, creating new opportunities for tailored treatment options.
OICR’s researchers accelerated the advancement of viral immunotherapies and immuno-oncology research into clinical trials. With the support of FACIT, the program’s assets attracted more than $150M for scale-up and growth, creating more than 37 new jobs and three clinical trials in Ontario.
OICR and FACIT’s WDR5 drug discovery project attracted a record-breaking $1 billion investment to advance a potential new therapy for leukemia into Ontario clinical trials. The investment also supports new Ontario jobs and will further research and development into similar therapies for other types of cancer.
We drive the adoption and commercialization of cancer innovations in Ontario for the benefit of patients and the Ontario economy.
OICR has helped 13,600+ Ontarians access new cancer interventions through clinical trials facilitated by the Canadian Cancer Clinical Trials Network (3CTN), which is supported and coordinated by OICR. This represents a 164 per cent increase in clinical trial enrollment since 2014.
OICR invests in the Ontario cancer research system, which helps to ensure the province is building the next generation of talent needed to remain at the forefront of cancer research and innovation globally. Since 2010, OICR has supported more than 2,400 educational events, engaging more than 121,000 attendees.
OICR’s strategic partner FACIT, a commercialization engine for cancer innovations in Ontario, has invested in Ontario start-ups that have attracted $1.2 billion in additional financing, allowing them to take root and scale in the province. FACIT has anchored companies in Ontario so the province and its patients can capitalize on our investment in world-leading cancer research.