Diabetes Canada is proud to announce the winners of its End Diabetes Awards, an annual competition that aims to dramatically improve the lives of people living with or at risk of type 1 and type 2 diabetes through innovative research. Each research project receives a $100,000 grant annually for three years for a total of $6.2 million in funds committed by Diabetes Canada for the research community.
“To achieve our vision of a world free of the effects of diabetes, Diabetes Canada knows that it needs to harness the transformative and combined power of technological, medical, and scientific research,” says Laura Syron, President and CEO of Diabetes Canada. “Since 1975, this research grant competition has helped ensure that Canada is a global leader in research into new breakthroughs in diabetes screening, treatments and care to help improve the lives of the nearly 12 million people in Canada who live with diabetes or prediabetes.”
Spanning biomedical, clinical, health services and population health research, each winning project has the potential to unlock new insights and breakthroughs in the field of diabetes management, care, and risk-reduction. Among the exciting projects funded in this year’s competition, here are a few highlights:
- A research project, led by Dr. Ian Zenlea, is exploring community-based type 2 diabetes prevention interventions that are family-based and culturally sensitive to Black, African and Caribbean communities─communities who have a higher risk of type 2 diabetes and related complications.
- More and more younger people across Canada have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes over the last two decades, greatly increasing the risk of severe complications in early adulthood. Dr. Joseph Gordon and his team are testing whether a protein found in muscle cells called Nix can protect against insulin resistance, and the changes that happen when diabetes develops.
- Leg and foot wounds from diabetes-related complications account for more than 70% of lower limb losses in Canada, but a research project, led by Dr. Nicole Woods, is looking to improve the prevention and early treatment of diabetes related foot wounds for structurally disadvantaged Ontarians living with diabetes.
- Dr. Rayzel Shulman’s project is piloting a diabetes awareness campaign focused on elementary school educators, caregivers, and heath care providers training them to notice the signs of diabetes and diabetes ketoacidosis─a serious and life-threatening condition─ensuring children get the timely care they need.
The winning research projects for this year’s Diabetes Canada’s End Diabetes Awards were rigorously evaluated by scientists with expertise in diabetes research, with input from people with lived experience, and Diabetes Canada’s National Research Council.
“The most important part of practicing medicine is when we can use evidence-based ways to inform care and intervene to improve the lives of individuals who live with health issues like diabetes─that doesn’t happen without research. Diabetes Canada funding makes research and therefore healthcare possible, directly benefiting people living with diabetes,” says Dr. Brandy Wicklow, Co-Chair of Diabetes Canada’s National Research Council.
For almost 50 years, Diabetes Canada has proudly supported outstanding diabetes research in Canada, administering more than $160 million in research grants, awards and partnerships to scientists and clinicians who have dedicated their careers to the fight against diabetes.
“We are grateful for the support of our incredible community of donors, without which this research funding would not be possible. On behalf of Diabetes Canada and the nearly 1 in 3 people who live with diabetes or prediabetes in this country, your meaningful investment in the health of those who live with diabetes is making an impact,” says Syron, who lives with type 2 diabetes herself.
Currently, Diabetes Canada’s financial commitment to research supports over 260 researchers at 20 different research institutions across the country.
Learn more about this year’s winning research projects.
About Diabetes Canda
A world free of the effects of diabetes is our vision. That’s why we’re working together to improve the quality of life of people living with diabetes. We’re sharing knowledge and creating connections for individuals and the health-care professionals who care for them; advocating through public policy; and funding research to improve treatments and find a cure to end diabetes.