TCU Place 35 -22nd St. East, Saskatoon, SK    

<< return to program
Graeme McRae
Chairman, President and CEO, Bioniche Life Sciences Inc.
Economic Impact of Emerging Food Borne Diseases
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
4:00 - 4:30 pm

Abstract:  Zoonotic diseases - those spread from animals to humans - are becoming increasingly prevalent. Healthy food animals are often the source of such diseases, resulting in direct and indirect contamination of our food supply, water supply and the environment. Human illness resulting from foodborne diseases costs our health care system millions of dollars each year. Add to that the cost of lost productivity, reduced demand for certain foods, recalls, and investment in interventions, and the scope of the problem is overwhelming. Bioniche Life Sciences Inc. has a food safety division with a focus on developing vaccines for food animals to reduce the threat of zoonotic diseases. The first such intervention - a cattle vaccine against E. coli O157 - is fully licensed in Canada. The Chairman, President & CEO of Bioniche, Mr. Graeme McRae, will address the costs of emerging foodborne illnesses, including the costs of developing and producing interventions such as the Bioniche E. coli vaccine.

Graeme McRae is Chairman, President & CEO of Bioniche Life Sciences Inc., a research-based, technology-driven Canadian biopharmaceutical company based in Belleville, Ontario, Canada that discovers, develops, manufactures, and commercializes products for both human and veterinary markets around the world.

Mr. McRae worked in sales and managerial positions in the pharmaceutical industry, first in Australia and later, in Canada. He founded Vetrepharm Animal Health in 1979 to focus on the research and development of products to improve the health of animals. His keen interest in the environment was a dominating force behind the founding of the Company, where his goal was to develop non-antibiotic solutions for animal health challenges.

Over time, it became clear that the technologies that were developed for animal health applications at Vetrepharm could be used for human health also. In 1992, Mr. McRae founded Bioniche Inc. to develop Vetrepharm's technologies for human health applications. The Company was renamed Bioniche Life Sciences Inc. in 1999.

Bioniche employs close to 200 skilled personnel and has three divisions: Human Health, Animal Health, and Food Safety. The Company’s primary goal is to develop proprietary cancer therapies supported by revenues from marketed products. One of these products is the world’s first fully licensed cattle vaccine against E. coli O157. The Company has also developed a product to treat human bladder cancer that is currently in Phase III clinical testing and is being supported by a development and commercialization partner – Endo Pharmaceuticals.

Click to view Graeme McRae's ABIC 2010 presentation