Riley Brandt, University of Calgary

Dec. 7, 2021

Government of Alberta announces over $22M in funding for UCalgary researchers

11 projects in engineering, health and science receive money through Research Capacity Program

The University of Calgary has received more than $22 million from the Government of Alberta for research projects in engineering, health, and science. The funding comes via the Research Capacity Program, providing support for cutting-edge infrastructure and technology development for 11 projects.

  • Photo above: Clockwise from left: Doug Schweitzer, minister of jobs, economy and innovation; Jeff LaFrenz, president, VizworX Inc.; Dr. Robert I. Thompson, associate vice-president (research); Dr. Signe Bray, associate professor, Cumming School of Medicine; Jason Copping, minister of health; Dr. Ed McCauley, president and vice-chancellor. Photo by Riley Brandt, University of Calgary

“We wish to thank the Government of Alberta for recognizing and supporting the innovative and ‘game-changing’ research going on at the University of Calgary. This funding means a range of research projects in health, science and engineering can take a big step forward,” says Dr. Ed McCauley, president and vice-chancellor.

“These are areas in which UCalgary is already leading the way, but it takes broad support from our partners to make the discoveries that will ultimately benefit society.”

The investment leverages close to $170 million allocated for these projects across partner institutions, including the Canada Foundation for Innovation, other participating institutions, non-profit organizations and industry collaborators

“Transformative research is the engine that will drive diversification forward and power Alberta’s economy for the future,” says Doug Schweitzer, minister of jobs, economy and innovation. “This investment at UCalgary is key to fuelling the innovation Alberta is known for, and it will lead to the commercialization of new technology solutions that will grow our industries and create new jobs.”

The projects are pursuing new knowledge in health and wellness, infectious diseases, machine learning, energy storage solutions, clean energy technology, quantum computing, and wireless telecommunications. 

Signe Bray

Signe Bray is one of the recipients of the Research Capacity Program funding.

Riley Brandt, University of Calgary

Dr. Signe Bray, PhD, associate professor in the Cumming School of Medicine, is investigating the use of MRIs to improve early detection and safe, targeted treatment of mental illness in children and young adults.

At the announcement, she shared how the funding will support her research: “Unravelling the complexities of brain disorders requires high precision. This new infrastructure will allow UCalgary’s outstanding brain and mental health researchers to generate more accurate and precise images of the human brain and ultimately lead to better diagnosis and treatment for brain disorders.”

“Today’s investment contributes to maintaining and growing University of Calgary’s strengths in world-class research and leadership in innovation and knowledge translation,” says Dr. Robert I. Thompson, associate vice-president (research).

“This important funding will ensure our researchers have access to critical infrastructure that facilitates discovery and sparks meaningful impact in our local and global communities.”

The UCalgary projects receiving funding are:

  • Dr. Paul Barclay, PhD (Faculty of Science), and Dr. John Davis, PhD (University of Alberta): "QDiamond: Accelerating the Second Quantum Revolution"
  • Dr. Leo Belostotski, PhD (Schulich School of Engineering), and Dr. Jo-Anne Brown, PhD (Faculty of Science): "CHORD: The Canadian HI Observatory and Radio transient Detector”
  • Dr. Jeff Biernaskie, PhD (Faculty of Veterinary Medicine), and Dr. Michael Kallos, PhD (Schulich School of Engineering): "Centre for Cell Therapy Translation (CTT)"
  • Dr. Viola Birss, PhD (Faculty of Science), and Dr. Edward Roberts, PhD (Schulich School of Engineering): "Durable Materials for Electrolyzers, Fuel Cells, and Batteries"
  • Dr. Signe Bray, PhD, and Dr. Bradley Goodyear, PhD (Cumming School of Medicine): "Imaging the Development of Brain Circuits for Early Detection and Intervention in Mental Illness"
  • Dr. Tim Friesen, PhD (Faculty of Science): "HAICU: Hydrogen Antihydrogen Infrastructure at Canadian Universities for Quantum Innovations in Antimatter Science"
  • Dr. Aaron Goodarzi, PhD (Cumming School of Medicine): "Cancer Risks of Arsenic and Radon Environmental Exposures (CARE)"
  • Dr. David Hogan, PhD (Cumming School of Medicine): "Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging (CLSA): A Platform for Interdisciplinary Research"  
  • Dr. Paul Kubes, PhD, and Dr. Kathy McCoy, PhD (Cumming School of Medicine): "Wild Microbiome and Immunity Centre" 
  • Dr. Douglas Mahoney, PhD (Cumming School of Medicine): "ExCELLirate Canada: Expanding CELL-Based Immunotherapy Research Acceleration for Translation and Evaluation"
  • Dr. Benjamin Tutulo, PhD (Faculty of Science): "Building a Future for Canadian Neutron Scattering"

Signe Bray is an associate professor in the Department of Radiology and the scientific director of the Child and Adolescent Imaging Research (CAIR) Program. She is a member of the Alberta Children’s Hospital Research Institute and the Hotchkiss Brain Institute.

This prestigious group represents the breadth and depth of the research and expertise at the University of Calgary, representing a number of the institutes within the Cumming School of Medicine, including the Alberta Children’s Hospital Research Institute (ACHRI), the Owerko Centre at ACHRI, the Arnie Charbonneau Cancer Institute, the Hotchkiss Brain Institute (HBI), The Mathison Centre for Mental Health Research & Education at the HBI, the Libin Cardiovascular Institute, the McCaig Institute for Bone and Joint Health, the O’Brien Institute for Public Health and the Snyder Institute for Chronic Diseases.