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Trent Forensics Professor Receives Provincial Funding to Develop DNA Tools to Identify and Track Bioterrorism Sources


Dr. Barry Saville Awarded $139,557 through Ontario Research Fund

Wednesday, October 22, 2008, Peterborough

Dr. Barry Saville, a professor in the Forensic Science program at Trent University, recently received $139,557 from the Ontario Research Fund (ORF) for research infrastructure funding to support his groundbreaking research in developing DNA analysis tools to identify and track the source of microbial pathogens infecting crops, animals or water supplies as a result of bioterrorist attack or a natural outbreak.

“This support from ORF is a welcomed illustration of Ontario co-funding research infrastructure development with the federal CFI program,” said Professor Saville. “This funding supports the combination of microbial pathogen expertise with existing forensics expertise and robotics analysis capabilities that exist only at Trent University. I truly appreciate the recognition of this unique opportunity by ORF.”

The funding is part of a larger $7.6 million announcement made on Friday, October 17 by the Ontario government to support 13 institutions and 46 projects involving nearly 342 scientists and researchers across the province. In total, the provincial government has made $37 million in investments this fall through the Ontario Research Fund, which is helping invent the future of health care, wireless communication and environmental technologies – while pushing the boundaries of science in fields such as space robotics, quantum physics and nanotechnology.

“Research is the foundation of innovation – and in the 21st century, innovation is the key to stronger global competitiveness, good jobs and better lives for Ontario families. And that’s why our government has made innovation a key part of our five-point economic plan,” said Minister of Research and Innovation John Wilkinson.