FACIT Announces Six Finalists for 2020 Falcons' Fortunes Pitch Competition

The pitch competition showcases six Ontario-based entrepreneurial researchers working in the oncology space to pitch their innovative research ideas to a panel of judges.

The 2020 competition is extra special as it will take place on the afternoon of Tuesday, February 4th, 2020, which is World Cancer Day. On a day that promotes the global fight against cancer among >100 countries, Falcons’ Fortunes will shine a spotlight on Ontario as a world-leading jurisdiction for cancer research translation

FACIT offers the $50,000 Ernsting Entrepreneurship Award from its Prospects Oncology Fund for the pitch presentation that best convinces the judging panel on the value of the idea and how $50,000 would improve and/or better illustrate the potential, and if possible commercial, value of the innovative idea itself. The pitch competition is open to all of Ontario, and accordingly, significant interest from across the province was received, from academics and industry alike.

FACIT is pleased to announce the six finalists who will be pitching at this year’s event, reflecting the rich diversity of technology assets being developed in Ontario, one of the most dynamic locations for life science technology innovation in North America:

  • Amr Abdelgawad (NERv Technology Inc.) - A smart, continuous, post-surgical monitoring system that incorporates μ-biosensors to detect anastomotic leaks following tumour excision
  • Meir Dick (Bridge7 Oncology) - Scaling clinical expertise with AI for automating and improving cancer treatment plans
  • Paul Krzyzanowski (Ontario Institute for Cancer Research) - Synthetic DNA probes for increased mutation calling precision from human plasma derived cell free DNA & other oncology samples
  • Rebecca Laposa (University of Toronto) – Targeting cancer metabolism with novel small-molecule inhibitors of mitochondrial RNA polymerase
  • Mason Ross and Brooke Acton (Doctalk Inc.) - MedInfo Response™: A novel approach to improve the medical information consumption experience for oncologists
  • Anthony Rullo (McMaster University) - Awaking the sleeping giant: new covalent engager technology to mark cancer for immune mediated destruction

This year’s event will feature Mike Wise, Anchor of CBC Toronto News at 11, as the emcee, as well as Libby Znaimer (Journalist, Author and Patient Advocate) as the keynote speaker. The judging panel will be comprised of:

  • Mr. Jung-Kay Chiu (Partner, Patent Agent, and Lawyer at Norton Rose Fulbright),
  • Dr. Jennifer Hamilton (Senior Director, New Ventures, J&J Innovation – Canada),
  • Dr. Shana Kelley (FACIT Board, Entrepreneur and Distinguished Professor of Biochemistry, Pharmaceutical Sciences, Chemistry & Biomedical Engineering at University of Toronto), 
  • Mr. Ken Lawless (FACIT Board, President & CEO of Epitope Capital), and
  • Mr. Ken Newport (OICR Board, BioCanRx Board, Life Science Entrepreneur).

Falcons’ Fortunes endeavors to enhance, support and celebrate a culture of commercialization in Ontario, such as the cultivation of skill sets that enable ideas to be successfully pitched to investors and promotion of entrepreneurial spirit.

Join us and learn more about these emerging breakthrough innovations and network with the Ontario cancer research community.

For more information, please visit the Falcons' Fortunes webpage.