TRANSFORMING MITOCHONDRIAL HEALTH

Mitochondrial Innovation Initiative a Strategic Initiative of the University of Toronto

We bring together a network of researchers, clinicians, patients and advocates, academic institutions, NGOs and industry partners working together with a common mission - to transform our understanding of the role of mitochondria in human health and disease, We welcome you to join us!

Fundraising Opportunity to Support Mitochondrial Research and Innovation:

Led by a Member of the MITO2i Community and Mitochondrial Activist, Thomas C. Zachos 

 

WHAT WE DO

DEVELOPING AWARENESS, 
ALIGNMENT AND INTEGRATION 
IN MITOCHONDRIALHEALTH AND DISEASE 

The relationship between mitochondrial dysfunction and severe mitochondrial disease has long been known. More recent research has established links to a broad range of neurodegenerative and metabolic disorders. This is a game-changer. Unveiling how mitochondrial dysfunction is implicated in multiple diseases will transform medical diagnoses, technologies and drug delivery systems, leading to a paradigm shift in the prevention and treatment of disease.


As mitochondrial research continues to accelerate, a lack of infrastructure for collaboration, knowledge integration and coordinated data-sharing prevents the development of a comprehensive, big-picture understanding of this crucial and emerging area of medicine that plays a role in many diseases and spans multiple disciplines, and areas of research. Together with its partners, the MITO2i aims to deliver supporting technologies, integrative platforms, and interdisciplinary knowledge that will lead to a paradigm shift in the way clinicians approach the diagnosis and treatment of disease and consider the potential role of mitochondrial dysfunction in multiple and prevalent medical conditions.

LEADERSHIP TEAM

Our team is committed to bringing innovation in mitochondrial medicine and research! Beyond disease, we will transform mitochondrial health.

We are only as successful as our team. Our esteemed team is dedicated to continuing and expanding our mission to transform mitochondrial health. We are a family of creative minds, qualified volunteers, and professionals in different fields who are bound by an undying passion to see the change we have envisioned. Each of our staff members plays an invaluable role in helping us to transform mitochondrial health. Contact us today and become a member.

ANA  ANDREAZZA

Dr. Andreazza is an Associate Professor in the Departments of Pharmacology & Toxicology and Psychiatry and holds a holding Tier II Canada Research Chair in Molecular Pharmacology of Mood Disorders and the Thomas C. Zachos Chair in Mitochondrial Research. Dr. Andreazza received PhD in Biochemistry from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, RS, Brazil. She has published over 150 research articles with an h-index factor of 45. She is the recipient of several prestigious research awards, including the 2018 Canada Top 40 Under 40 and has received funding from the Brain and Behavior Foundation (NARSAD), the Canadian Institutes for Health Research, the Ontario Mental Health Foundation and the Ontario Ministry of Research and Innovation. Her research focuses on the understanding of the role of redox modulations and mitochondrial dysfunction in mental illness, especially in mood disorders.

 

Dr. Andreazza research focuses on the understanding of the role of mitochondrial function in mental illness, especially in mood disorders. As neurons depend on mitochondrial function, dysfunctional mitochondrial during neurodevelopment is expected to impact neurotransmission with potentially crucial implications for mood disorders. Currently, Dr. Andreazza is evaluating the impact of mitochondrial dysfunction on neurotransmission using 3D brain organoids generated from induced pluripotent stem cells from patients with bipolar disorder and/or mitochondrial disease. 

 

To accelerate the discovery of effective therapeutic approaches to treat mitochondrial dysfunction/disease, Dr. Andreazza founded the mitoNET.ca, which after successful fundraising and support from the University of Toronto became MITO2i.  The objective is to unite researchers from different medical fields with a common interest in unveiling the role of mitochondrial function and genetics in human diseases and transform mitochondrial health.

Read more about Dr. Andreazza

SONYA  BRIJBASSI

Sonya joined the University of Toronto at Innovations & Partnerships Office (IPO), a division of the VPRI in 2007 as a Commercialization Manager for the Life Sciences team.  She worked with a number of Faculty members across the University and the affiliated hospitals to move research projects out of the lab by developing commercialization strategies through licensing technologies and/or start-up company formation.  In 2013, she took on another role at IPO as Business Development Officer, Industry Partnerships to support sponsored research, facilitate interactions and negotiations with industry partners and create long term strategic partnerships and collaborations for the University with external organizations .  Sonya has played an important role in advancing and expanding research collaborations with industry, hosting senior delegations, planning and executing high-profile events such as UofT’s participation in Toronto Health Innovation Week and supporting major proposals and competitions.  Prior to joining UofT, Sonya worked as a Technology Officer at the Robarts Research Institute in London Ontario assessing invention disclosures and supporting the patenting process.  Sonya has a Master's of Science Degree in Biochemistry from the University of Western Ontario and an Undergraduate degree in Human Biology from UofT.

MARK  FERNANDO

Mark is truly a valued member of the Mitochondrial Innovation Initiative family. Mark has joined MITO2i with the mission to interview our mitoPodCast members - he has done an incredible job beyond the interview he built.

ERIKA  BERONCAL

Erika is truly a valued member of the Mitochondrial Innovation Initiative family. She is project manager at Dr. Andreazza laboratory who has been assisting  MITO2i to achieve its potential. She assisted in organizing MITO2019 and has been quintessential in the everyday organization of MITO2i.

STEERING COMMITTEE

Dr. Christine Allen, Associate Vice President & Vice-Provost, ISI
Dr. Reinhart Reithmeier, Vice-Dean Research & Innovation FOM
Dr. Laura Rosella, Associate Professor Dalla Lana School of Public Health
Dr. Trudo Lemmens, Professor, Scholl Chair in Health Law and Policy
Dr. Milica Radisic, Associate Chair Research, Department of Chemical Engineering and Applied Chemistry

EXECUTIVE ADVISORY COMMITTEE

Ken Evans, President, InDoc Research Inc.
Tania Bubela, Dean Faculty of Health Sciences, SFU
Blaine Penny, President and Co-Founder, MitoCanada
Constantine Zachos, MD, MITO2i Executive
Erin Walker, Patient Insight and Involvement Lead, UCL Partners

SCIENTIFIC ADVISORY COMMITTEE

An incredibly valued asset to our team, the Scientific Advisory Team help us to identify the best opportunities, help MITO2i to shape the future of mitochondrial innovation — and plays a crucial role in the functions of Mitochondrial Innovation Initiative, such as white paper, fellowship and grants awards. If you are interested in joining the scientific advisory team please contact us today!

 

CORE ACTIVITIES

Innovation in research, building capacity and awareness

 
Electronic Chip

ADVANCING RESEARCH INNOVATION & TREATMENT

Through Innovation Grants MITO2i will promote interdisciplinary collaboration to transform and innovate the field of mitochondrial medicine and research.

AT the LAb

BUILDING CAPACITY AMONG TODAY'S LEADERS

We focus on training the next generation of mitochondrial research leaders by building capacity among trainees and established researchers and clinicians in advancing its interdisciplinary and patient-oriented approach to mitochondrial medicine.

Lecture

BUILDING AWARENESS IN MITOCHONDRIAL HEALTH, DISEASE & RESEARCH

At Mitochondrial Innovation Initiative, we provide a wide range of opportunities. We offer symposiums, workshops, podcasts, and an annual conference  to promote collaboration, community integration and to offer a chance for national, local and international leaders, patients and advocates, and trainees to come together and exchange knowledge

MITOCODE

Data integration platform

mitoCODE is a suite of computational tools for the sharing and analysis of data and their multidimensional integration with other datasets across Canada. This is achieved through a partnership between InDoc Research and the Mitochondrial Innovation Initiative (MITO2i). The knowledge developed from patient clinical, demographical, genetics and derived disease models will be shared via mitoCODE which will allow researchers and clinicians to reframe multiple diseases in the context of mitochondrial function and resilience, and to develop a comprehensive understanding of the role of mitochondria in disease development, disease progression and effective interventions.

 
 

GRANTS AND FELLOWSHIPS

Applications are now CLOSED.

Deadline: Monday, September 14th, 2020

 

RECENT NEWS

Creating a Buzz in Media Outlets Nationwide

RESOURCES

Graduate Student Opportunities

 
Science Lab

INNOVATION & CATALYST GRANTS

Aimed to fund innovative and impactful projects that brings novel ways to diagnose and treat patients with mitochondrial disease or dysfunction. 

SCHOLARSHIP & FELLOWSHIP GRANTS

Aimed at training the next generation to maintain cross-cutting research, build momentum, and generate strong, sustainable research capacity in Canada for mitochondrial medicine. 

Female Scientist Using Microscope

Mitochondrial Abstract Resource

MITO2i VIDEO: Patient Engagement and Q&A Session

UPCOMING EVENTS

MITOPODCAST

The mitoPodCast is a program aimed at building awareness in the mitochondrial medicine, research and patient advocacy community on topics related to mitochondrial disease and health as well as to highlight cutting-edge research in the field. 


Our audio-format episodes are approximately 10-15 minutes in length and will feature the exciting work of an expert in the field in a way that can be understood by all in the community. Included with every episode will be an infographic summary of what was discussed so please check that out as well!

 

Join our online network events

mitoFUTURES Career Development Workshop
Wed, Oct 28
Online Event
Oct 28, 1:00 PM
Online Event
The workshop will provide our trainees with an opportunity to hear from researchers and academics that have moved their research out of the lab and been involved with the commercialization process and/or start-up company formation.
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PAST EVENTS

MITO2i TOWN HALL MEETING

 

JUNE 19, 2020, @11AM EST OR 3PM EST 

   

MITO2i INVITE YOU TO JOIN US FOR A TOWN HALL MEETING TO LEARN ABOUT THE UPCOMING OPPORTUNITIES AND HELP US TO SHAPE THE FUTURE OF OUR NETWORK.  

MITOCODE WORKSHOP

JUNE 26, 2020 @ 11AM EST OR 3PM EST

RESEARCHES AND CLINICIANS WHO WANT TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THE MITO2i DATA INTEGRATION PLATFORM AND PARTICIPATE IN MITOCODE DEVELOPMENT.

mitoCONFERENCE

 

For the safety and well-being of all our attendees the mitoCONFERENCE has been moved to Fall 2021.  The decision was based on continuing to provide an in-person forum for all members to hear patient stories and learn about the advancements in field during live sessions where they can engage with speakers, fellow colleagues, patient groups and partners.  We look forward to meeting with you in person in 2021!

 

CONTACT US

Get in touch for more information about our organization and grant opportunities.

For Scientific Inquiries, please contact:

Dr. Ana Andreazza

Academic Director 

ana.andreazza@utoronto.ca


For partnering opportunities please contact:

Sonya Brijbassi

Associate Director, Strategy & Partnerships

s.brijbassi@utoronto.ca


For all other inquiries, please contact 

Erika Beroncal

Lab Manager

erika.beroncal@mail.utoronto.ca

1 King's College Cir, Toronto, ON M5S, Canada

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