LEXINGTON, Mass., Sept. 12, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- iSpecimen®, a trusted source of customized human biospecimen collections, today announced that it has entered into an agreement with the Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine. Under the agreement, iSpecimen will serve as the exclusive channel partner for the Mayo Clinic Cancer/Normal Serum Biobank, connecting biomedical researchers with the samples and associated data for their studies.
The Cancer/Normal Serum Biobank, located on Mayo Clinic's campus in Rochester, Minnesota, includes approximately 130,000 frozen vials of serum from about 17,000 unique, consented patients. The samples were collected between 1975 and 1990 across 85 different malignant and benign conditions. iSpecimen, which works to procure annotated samples for life science researchers, will manage the serum inventory and associated data through its cloud-based technology solution, matching researchers to the right samples to fuel their studies.
"As is the case with many biorepositories, intensive resources have been put into creating a variety of sample collections along with state-of-the-art facilities," said Stephen Thibodeau, Ph.D., the David F. and Margaret T. Grohne Director, Biorepositories Program, Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine. "But despite holding thousands of sought-after samples, the biorepository is underutilized by external researchers. iSpecimen presented an opportunity for us to work with them to efficiently move these specimens into the hands of many more scientists studying cancer and related conditions, which ultimately should result in better treatments."
With the surge of precision medicine, and particularly increased interest and funding for cancer research, as evidenced by initiatives such as the Cancer Moonshot and Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy, Mayo Clinic's Cancer/Normal Serum Biobank presents research value not only due to the thousands of serum samples it holds, but also due to the longitudinal nature of many of the samples. Also of considerable value is the clinical annotation accompanying the samples, which includes patient demographics, blood collection data, tumor information, treatment information, and status of tumor at time of blood collection.
"Developed specifically with researchers in mind, iSpecimen is proud to collaborate with Mayo Clinic to help to expand this biobank's reach across the scientific community," said Christopher Ianelli, M.D., Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer, iSpecimen. "It's estimated that the number of new cancer cases per year will rise from 14 to 22 million globally within the next two decades. As oncology research continues to evolve at a rapid pace, providing researchers fast access to the right, high-quality biospecimens will be crucial to helping them execute on new ways of understanding, diagnosing and treating this disease."
Mayo Clinic has a history of excellence in biobanking, which is reflected in their recent funding award of $142 million over five years by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to serve as the national Precision Medicine Initiative (PMI) Cohort Program Biobank. Dr. Thibodeau and Mine Cicek, Ph.D. are the co-principal investigators of the funding award. This biobank will hold the research repository of biospecimens for the longitudinal program that aims to enroll one million or more U.S. participants to better understand individual differences that contribute to health and disease to advance precision medicine.
Privately held and headquartered in Lexington, Massachusetts, iSpecimen is a trusted, one-stop source of customized human biospecimen collections. Compliantly sourced from our diverse partner network of hospitals, labs, biorepositories, blood centers, and other organizations, our solid tissue, biofluids, and cells are delivered directly into the hands of researchers using unique, turnkey technology. Scientists gain access to a ready supply of the high-quality, richly-annotated biospecimens they need from the patients they want. Supply partners gain an opportunity to further contribute to biomedical discovery as well as their bottom line. And ultimately, healthcare advances for all. For more information about iSpecimen, please visit www.iSpecimen.com.
About Mayo Clinic's Center for Individualized Medicine
The Center for Individualized Medicine discovers and integrates the latest in genomic, molecular and clinical sciences into personalized care for each Mayo Clinic patient. For more information, visit http://mayoresearch.mayo.edu/center-for-individualized-medicine.
About Mayo Clinic
Mayo Clinic is a nonprofit organization committed to clinical practice, education and research, providing expert, whole-person care to everyone who needs healing. For more information, visit http://www.mayoclinic.org/about-mayo-clinic or http://newsnetwork.mayoclinic.org.
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