The fight against colon cancer got an infusion of funds today.

In a $6.9-million collaboration, the Ontario government and leading medical research centres in the province joined the world’s largest pharmaceutical research company to develop new drugs.

Pfizer, a New York-based company with 1,400 employees across Canada, is partnering with the Ontario Cancer Institute and the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research.

Dr. Tom Hudson, president and scientific director of the Institute for Cancer Research, says the deal supports intense study of colon cancer cells and could lead to treatments for people with a poor chance of recovery.

Every person has a unique response to particular drugs, Hudson says. Scientists want to match treatments to patients more precisely.

Pfizer is investing $6 million, while the Ontario government is putting $900,000 toward the project in a move it hopes will create research jobs and stimulate Ontario’s economy.