Vancouver, Canada – The Centre for Drug Research and Development (CDRD), Canada’s national drug development and commercialization centre, is pleased to announce the appointments of Dr. Francois Bénard and Ms. Nancy Harrison as Directors of the organization.

Dr. Bénard is Vice President of Research at the BC Cancer Agency where he is responsible for setting and facilitating a comprehensive cancer research strategy and agenda for British Columbia in collaboration with research leadership provincially, nationally and internationally. He trained in medicine and nuclear medicine at the Université de Sherbrooke in Quebec, becoming chief of the molecular imaging centre at the Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Sherbrooke, and Professor of nuclear medicine and radiobiology. He is an international leader in molecular imaging as well as an important part of the research community in British Columbia. His interests combine state‐of‐the art clinical care with a thriving translational research program in imaging and radionuclide therapy.

As a biotechnology venture capitalist, a company founder and leader, and an active board and community member, Ms. Harrison is one of the most experienced and well-respected professionals in the Canadian life sciences industry. Most recently, she co-founded and acted as President of MSI Methylation Sciences Inc., a private venture backed development company with a novel treatment of depression in Phase II development. Prior to that, she served as Partner and Senior Vice President of Ventures West Management Inc., one of Canada’s most successful and transformative biotechnology investment practices.

CDRD Chair, Mr. Don Avison commented, “On behalf of the CDRD Board of Directors, I am pleased to welcome these two outstanding life sciences leaders who have made tremendous contributions to our sector. With their experiences from both the research and business sides of the industry, they will be a great asset in helping drive CDRD to its next level of success as a global bridge translating discoveries into innovative therapeutic products and improved health outcomes.”

Mr. Gordon McCauley, President and CEO of CDRD added, “CDRD management is very much looking forward to working closely with Francois and Nancy. Their experienced voices will prove invaluable as we set the course for the future of CDRD, and continue to work with our partners across the country to identify and advance promising discoveries, transform them into validated investments, and fully realize our vision of Canadian life sciences leading the world.”

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About The Centre for Drug Research and Development (CDRD)

CDRD is Canada’s national drug development and commercialization centre working in partnership with academia, industry, government and foundations. A global leader in bridging commercialization gaps to translate early-stage discoveries and technologies into new health innovations, CDRD provides the specialized expertise and infrastructure to identify, validate and advance promising discoveries, and transform them into commercially viable investment opportunities for the private sector — and ultimately into new health products for patients. Canada’s Networks of Centres of Excellence Program has recognized CDRD as a Centre of Excellence for Commercialization and Research (CECR). www.cdrd.ca

For additional information, please contact:
Barry Gee
Director, Communications
Direct: 604.827.1223
Email: bgee@cdrd.ca