CEEHRC represents a multi-stage funding commitment by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and multiple Canadian and international partners. The overall aim is to position Canada at the forefront of international efforts to translate new discoveries in the field of epigenetics into improved human health. The two sites will focus on sequencing human reference epigenomes and developing new technologies and protocols; they will also serve as platforms for other CEEHRC funding initiatives, such as catalyst and team grants.
The complementary reference epigenome mapping efforts of the two sites will focus on a range of common human diseases. The Vancouver group will focus on the role of epigenetics in the development of cancer, including lymphoma and cancers of the ovary, colon, breast, and thyroid. The Montreal team will focus on autoimmune / inflammatory, cardio-metabolic, and neuropsychiatric diseases, using studies of identical twins as well as animal models of human disease.