Who We Are, Mission, and Vision





The Canadian Islet Research and Training Network (CIRTN) was established in 2020 by joint contributions from the University of Alberta, University of British Columbia, University of Manitoba, Université de Montréal, Insitut de Reserches Cliniques de Montréal, and the University of Toronto.

We welcome laboratories, investigators, and trainees of all career stages from across Canada.


CIRTN currently includes 50 laboratories and more than 200 associated researchers and staff engaged in the study of the pancreatic islets of Langerhans. Islets are micro-organs that produce insulin and other important endocrine hormones which help the body maintain normal blood sugar levels. Loss of islet cells, or impairment in their function, is a common feature of diabetes. Notably, 100 years ago insulin was discovered in Canada, changing the global landscape of diabetes research and treatment.

CIRTN seeks to build upon Canada’s reputation for excellence in islet biology research by facilitating the exchange of information and ideas with in-person and virtual scientific meetings, by enhancing mentorship and trainee career development, and by promoting engagement and collaboration amongst islet researchers in Canada and worldwide. We will develop approaches to knowledge mobilization and engagement across Canada in a manner that fosters inclusivity.



As a cross-Canada network bringing together a diverse group of scientists, CIRTN-R2FIC aims to provide a platform for:


Accessible communication among islet researchers for the purposes of increasing collaboration and networking opportunities within the Canadian islet research community

Enhanced mentorship and professional development opportunities in islet biology for trainees and investigators at all levels

Promoting knowledge sharing and capacity building of islet research and training in Canada



World-leading islet research and training in Canada.

pancreas slices
SEM islet
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