Life sciences

Canada and the Toronto Region are known for their dedication to innovation in life sciences and a commitment to research and development. Our large multi-ethnic population, public health care system and competitive costs in this sector make the region the ideal location to conduct groundbreaking research through clinical trials.

The region’s life sciences sector employs more than 36,000 people in areas such as medical research, biotechnology, medical devices, pharmaceuticals and other medical and life science fields. The Toronto Global team can help your company find the right facility that matches your manufacturing or research needs.


There is strong collaboration between the life sciences sector and academia in the region. For example, York University is currently constructing a $70 million life sciences center. This 165,000 square foot building will house classrooms, labs, and research space to support enrollments in the science and health-related areas.

Very recently, the federal and provincial governments announced that they are joining with the University of Toronto to inject almost $190 million into research facilities at the University. In total, universities and colleges in Ontario are receiving $1.9 billion from the Government of Canada, the provincial government and the institutions themselves to modernize research facilities.

If you choose to conduct research and development (R&D) in the Toronto Region, your business will benefit from an average cost advantage over the US of 12.9 percent. Federal and provincial government grants and public sector incentive programs can reduce R&D costs by up to 60 percent.

“The Toronto Region is home to a vibrant and prolific healthcare and life sciences community led by academic hospitals, world-class research institutions, top scientists, and a strong start-up ecosystem. For these reasons, Toronto is a natural choice for our first international expansion of JLABS. The Johnson & Johnson Family of Companies has long been active within the Toronto community, forming many important collaborations. Our new location, within a University of Toronto site, close to our hospital collaborators, and neighbouring the financial centre of Canada, will deliver great opportunities and impact for emerging biomedical technology entrepreneurs.”
– Melinda Richter, Head of JLABS @ Toronto


A very unique aspect of the Toronto Region’s life sciences sector is our “Discovery District.” Located in Toronto’s downtown core, the District is Canada’s largest concentration of research institutes, business incubators, and business support services. It covers 2.5 square kilometers and is home to more than seven million square feet of facilities, which include the University of Toronto and more than 30 medical and related research centres. A network of 22,000 medical-related professionals, including physicians, researchers and technicians, work in the District.

In addition, the life sciences cluster in Mississauga is home to more than 390 companies and 25,000 employees. Mississauga is attracting highly-skilled scientific and technical personnel with education from across the region, along with experienced management to lead the production and drive the marketing of products and services. The Spark Centre in Durham Region provides supports for companies across a variety of sectors, including innovative health and biotech companies looking for investment, advisory, and operational support services.