When 31-year-old Jason Deglint was completing his PhD in systems design engineering at University of Waterloo, he decided to tackle a problem that costs an estimated $2 billion in damages and losses in the aquaculture industry: the harmful algae blooms that kill fish.
Deglint dedicated his thesis research to developing a smart, low-cost prototype imaging system to analyze samples in the lab. With support from the Mitacs Accelerate Entrepreneur program, his efforts resulted in the creation of Blue Lion Labs, a new small business based in Waterloo, Ontario.
Founded by a pair of Dalhousie University alumni of the materials engineering program, Nova Scotia-based Graphite Innovation and Technologies (GIT) is providing opportunities for Dalhousie graduate students to put their research experience into practice through Mitacs internships.
Quebec entrepreneur and former Mitacs intern Azadeh Dastmalchi developed a medical-grade smartwatch after struggling to find a device that could help her father monitor his hypertension. Now, in addition to targeting the one in three adults suffering from high blood pressure in North America, her company VitalTracer is pivoting its solution to assist with early detection and monitoring of COVID-19 symptoms.
With the onset of the COVID-19 crisis, CAMufacturing Solutions Inc. knew they needed to bring their expertise in additive manufacturing, or 3D printing, to support the rising demand for quick production of personnel protective equipment (PPE) for the health care community.
Who could have foreseen that humanitarian activities during the 2010 earthquake in Haiti would, 10 years later, guide the way for researchers, entrepreneurs and Mitacs interns during the COVID-19 crisis?
During his deployment at a Red Cross field hospital after the earthquake, Dr. Abdo Shabah saw the potential for greater use of technology in emergency health interventions.
When postdoctoral fellow Mahdiyeh Hasani of University of Guelph came to Canada in 2017 and began working with Professor Keith Warriner to decontaminate produce, she had no idea that in just a few years COVID-19 would dramatically change the world — and the impact of her research.
Imagine you’re having lunch on a courtyard patio downtown. It’s a crisp, sunny autumn day with a light breeze. Your table is against a south-facing brick wall that is bathed in sunlight and there’s a row of tall bushes at the edge of the patio that break the wind. You wore a jacket to the restaurant but after sitting for a few minutes, you’re warm enough to take it off and enjoy the sunshine on your bare arms.
Professor Isabel Desgagné-Penix and her team at the Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières are the first to demonstrate that cannabinoids can be successfully grown in microalgae by a process called metabolic engineering.
The process of metabolic engineering extracts the genes responsible for cannabinoid production from cannabis plants and inserts them into algae, creating a type of cannabis surrogacy in algae.
Semah Aissaoui’s journey with Mitacs began in summer 2018 as an undergraduate in Tunisia when he first came to Canada as a Globalink research intern. He progressed on to receive the Mitacs Globalink Graduate Fellowship and attend graduate school at Polytechnique Montréal in Canada with the award. He now works with Fluent.ai on a Mitacs Accelerate award, researching how to remove background noise and reverberation from sound signals to enhance the accuracy of offline voice-activated devices.