The University of Toronto received a $114 million boost from the federal government that the school says will "take regenerative medicine to the next level."

U of T says the funding will allow the school, Hospital for Sick Children, University Health Network, and Mount Sinai Hospital to deliver a new program called Medicine by Design.

"We'll be able to design cells, tissues, and organs from the ground up, hopefully with benefit to patients and benefit to the Canadian economy," Prof. Peter Zandstra, one of the researchers involved with the Medicine by Design project.

"Stem cells offer avenues to treat – and perhaps cure – devastating and costly illnesses such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, blindness, lung disease, neurodegenerative disorders, and diseases of the blood and musculoskeletal system," he said. "Medicine by Design provides a framework to design the cells, the materials and, ultimately, the clinical strategy needed to reach this goal."

Minister of State (Science and Technology) Ed Holder, who made the announcement today, said the investment in Medicine by Design "will harness Canada's strengths in regenerative medicine to treat and cure serious injuries and diseases that impact every Canadian family while creating new opportunities for Canadian health-related businesses."  

The research grant, the largest in U of T's history, is the first to be awarded under the Canada First Research Excellence Fund that was established by the federal government last year.