A gift of $1.5 million from National Bank Financial Group paves the way for establishment of a research unit on congenital defects, at The Children’s

Montreal, 19 May 2009 - 

The Montreal Children’s Hospital Foundation and National Bank Financial Group are proud to announce the establishment of a clinical research unit to investigate congenital defects. This unit, made possible thanks to a donation of $1.5 million from National Bank Financial Group, will study the role of genetics in causing congenital defects and how the environment and genes can interact to alter normal embryonic development.

“This clinical research unit is part of a major reorganization within the pediatric pod of the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre, which will soon be built on the Glen site, alongside the future Children’s. It will bring together an extended team of clinicians and researchers, in an environment where patients can be followed prior to their birth, and throughout their life span,” explains Dr. Jacquetta Trasler, Associate Director of pediatric research at The Montreal Children’s Hospital Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre.

“The Montreal Children’s Hospital plays a leading role in the wellbeing of our communities, most notably through its excellence in pediatric care and its contribution to education and research. To be associated with such a great institution, and to contribute to its continued success, is a great privilege for National Bank Financial Group,” says Sylvie Roy, Vice-President - Corporate Marketing and Communications at National Bank Financial Group.

In 2008, through its donations and sponsorships program and the initiatives of its employees, National Bank Financial Group helped support hundreds of organizations across Canada. It focuses primarily on four main areas of activity – health, education, arts and culture, and community outreach – with the goal of generating positive spinoffs for communities.

More information on the many causes and projects the Financial Group supports as part of its commitment to the communities it serves can be found in the Bank’s Social Responsibility Report on its website at www.nbc.ca/socialresponsibility

About National Bank of Canada
National Bank of Canada, which is celebrating its 150th anniversary in 2009, is an integrated group which provides comprehensive financial services to consumers, small and medium-sized enterprises and large corporations in its core market, while offering specialized services to its clients elsewhere in the world. The National Bank offers a full array of banking services, including retail, corporate and investment banking. It is an active player on international capital markets and, through its subsidiaries, is involved in securities brokerage, insurance and wealth management as well as mutual fund and retirement plan management. National Bank has close to $137 billion in assets and, together with its subsidiaries, employs 17,199 people. The Bank’s securities are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange (NA:TSX). For more information, visit the Bank’s website at www.nbc.ca
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About The Montreal Children’s Hospital and its Foundation
The Montreal Children’s Hospital is the pediatric teaching hospital of the McGill University Health Centre and is affiliated with McGill University. The Children’s is a leader in providing a broad spectrum of highly specialized care to newborns, children, and adolescents from across Quebec.   In 2006, The Children’s Foundation launched The Best Care for Children campaign with a goal to raise $100 million to build the new Montreal Children’s Hospital, of which construction will begin in 2010, on the Glen Campus.The Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre will be built on the same site; it recently received a $100 million grant from the Canadian Foundation for Innovation for this construction project. This grant must be matched by an amount of $50 million in private funds, to which the National Bank of Canada gift will be applied.

Information :(The telephone numbers provided below are for the exclusive use of journalists and other media representatives.):

Danielle Gabrielle Roy
Director of Communications
The Montreal Children’s Hospital Foundation
Tel.: 514 238-4760

Denis Dubé
Senior Manager, Public Relations
National Bank Financial Group
Tel.: 514 394-8644