The McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) Foundation is proud to announce a personal donation of $100,000 from Marc Parent, President and CEO of CAE and MUHC Foundation board member. This gift will support ground-breaking research using the Biobanque québécoise de la COVID-19 (BQC19), a provincial and federal government sponsored bank of COVID-19 samples from patients across Quebec.

Marc Parent

Marc Parent, President and CEO of CAE and MUHC Foundation board member

“As Co-Chair of the MUHC Foundation’s Dream Big campaign, I have witnessed the progress accomplished by the team of renowned MUHC scientists. I strongly believe in this project, and I am appealing for donations from everyone, big and small, to support this crucial initiative in the fight against coronavirus,” states Marc Parent.

“On behalf of the population we serve, I would like to extend my sincere gratitude to Mr. Parent for his donation. Thanks to this generosity, our scientists will be able to develop and implement life-saving treatments,” says Dr. Pierre Gfeller, President and Executive Director of the MUHC.

“Marc is passionate about advancing health care, and his commitment to basic research of the coronavirus will benefit people across the country and around the world,” says Norman Steinberg, Chair of the MUHC Foundation Board of Directors. “We are grateful for his generosity.”

Thanks to this funding, Dr. Vincent Mooser from the Canada Excellence Research Chair in Genomic Medicine, and the BQC19 team, including Dr. Simon Rousseau, researcher at the MUHC, will provide researchers with high-quality data on blood samples from BQC19. The analysis that will be undertaken will study the proteins found in the body, during and after COVID-19 infection.

This project will contribute to the collective effort to identify proteins created in response to the virus that cause serious illness in some patients. Respiratory problems are not caused by the virus, but rather by efforts of the patient’s immune system to get rid of it. By understanding what proteins in the body cause this reaction, researchers will be able to develop drugs to prevent it.

BQC19 is the largest biobank of samples collected from patients severely infected with COVID-19 in Canada. Its mission is to support research to determine how and why the coronavirus causes serious diseases. It is an open science resource, which means that it widely shares its data and samples with the scientific community. Over 1,000 participants have already been recruited for this project and have agreed to share their data for research on COVID-19. Each participant agreed to provide several samples to document the progression of their illness from day one to two years after recovery.