Funding of $500,000 designed to help Charlottetown-based Nautilus BioSciences find naturally-derived marine products to create safer alternatives to pesticides
With financial support from the governments of Canada and Prince Edward Island, Emergence client, Nautilus BioSciences Canada Inc., is creating a novel process to identify fungicidal extracts from marine micro-organisms that could have wide-reaching, environmentally sustainable benefits for the agriculture industry.
Sean Casey, Member of Parliament for Charlottetown, on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA), along with the Honourable Heath MacDonald, PEI Minister of Economic Development and Tourism, recently announced $500,000 in funding for Nautilus.
Through its Business Development Program, ACOA will provide a repayable contribution of $500,000 to support the company’s ongoing research and cataloguing of naturally-derived fungicides to be used in crop protection.
The Government of Prince Edward Island, through Innovation PEI, will provide Nautilus with labour rebates worth up to $22,519 for the project.
The agricultural industry, a major driver of the Canadian economy, is constantly seeking to improve production and reduce crop loss. These naturally-derived fungicides have the potential to be game changing for Canadian farmers, providing a safer and more effective step in crop care.
Founded by CEO Dr. Russell Kerr in 2007, the company is located in the National Research Council of Canada Building in Charlottetown.
In collaboration with Dr. Kerr’s academic lab at the University of Prince Edward Island, the Nautilus team studies marine plant life for applications in human and animal health and wellness, staffing up to 30 people.
“Canadian bioscience companies are conducting exciting research, and showing tremendous leadership as they look for innovative solutions to global challenges. Not only do they serve as incubators and accelerators for new ideas, the businesses and research labs in this cluster are vital to the Government of Canada’s economic path and play a key role in growing our economy.”
- The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for ACOA
“The National Research Council’s Institute of Nutrisciences and Health is home to some remarkable initiatives. Nautilus is one of the resident companies making a significant contribution to expanding knowledge of our natural resources and discovering valuable applications in the market. As their findings transition from the lab to the commercial phase, industries and individuals will benefit from a stronger economy and improved environmental practices.”
- Sean Casey, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Member of Parliament for Charlottetown
“By using our natural resources to develop cutting edge products, companies like Nautilus are helping to cement Prince Edward Island’s reputation as a leader in bio-technology. The industry and all levels of government have worked very hard to develop a significant cluster of bio-technology companies in the province and we are seeing a tremendous return on that work.”
- The Honourable Heath MacDonald, Minister of Economic Development and Tourism
“This project funding allows Nautilus to expand its reach into a new market area. Specifically, the project is focused on the discovery of new agents to enhance crop protection by searching for natural products that enhance the benefit of existing plant fungicides.”
- Russell Kerr, CEO, Nautilus BioSciences Canada Inc.