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BioServe and University of Massachusetts Form Strategic Alliance

BioServe and University of Massachusetts Medical School Form Strategic Alliance

April 20, 2010

Agreement aims to bring a range of high-quality oncology biomaterials to researchers worldwide

Beltsville, MD, April 20, 2010 – BioServe and the University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMMS) today announced the formation of an exclusive strategic alliance aimed at easing a bottleneck in oncology research programs worldwide. Through this agreement BioServe will supplement its clinical-grade biomaterial in its Global BioRepository with a variety of biospecimen samples from the UMass Cancer Center Tissue Bank, which consists of tissues and other specimens from over twenty different types of cancer. The ability to access UMass samples as part of BioServe’s repository services provides cancer researchers access to expanded quantities of a range of top-quality cancer biomaterial, collected and stored in accordance with industry-standard best practice guidelines.

Obtaining high-quality biosamples is crucial to furthering the understanding of disease and the development of new research discoveries and therapies. Scientists are routinely hindered in their research by the lack of high-quality biospecimens and, according to recent research, one in five scientists reports that inferior quality of samples might be compromising their data.

“The scope and superb quality of the specimens collected by UMass Cancer Center tissue bank is impressive. Their tissue bank includes nearly every major solid tumor type, as well as most hematological malignancies. Complementing our biorepository, which already features access to samples from Fox Chase Cancer Center, with UMass samples provides cancer researchers with a unique resource with the potential to accelerate discovery and impact patient treatment decisions downstream,” said Rama Modali, President of BioServe.

The UMass Cancer Center Tissue Bank primarily collects remnant tissue from surgery and other procedures. In this way discarded tissues are recycled to provide an important resource for biomedical scientists. The collection methods do not interfere in any way with patient diagnostic or treatment decisions. All samples are collected under and an IRB-approved protocol with appropriate informed consent and HIPAA-compliant measures. In line with BioServe’s operations, all samples included in this collaboration are provided solely on an anonymous and de-identified basis.

“Through this relationship our researchers at UMass also gain access to the large library of samples in BioServe’s Global BioRepository, as well as enhanced access to its full suite of preclinical molecular services. Access to these facilities may prove to be a major asset to our internal UMass research programs,” added James P. McNamara, PhD, Executive Director of the Office of Technology Management at UMass Medical School Cancer Center.

“Our goal is to facilitate basic science, clinical research and translational studies by providing researchers with the ability to obtain and study human tissues,” said Dr. Stephen R. Lyle, MD, PhD, Director of the UMass Cancer Center Tissue Bank and associate professor of cancer biology and pathology at UMMS. “Partnering with BioServe enables us to dramatically extend the reach of our samples for the benefit of researchers around the world, whether they work in big pharma or academic research institutions.”

About the University of Massachusetts Medical School

The University of Massachusetts Medical School, one of the fastest growing academic health centers in the country, has built a reputation as a world-class research institution, consistently producing noteworthy advances in clinical and basic research. The Medical School attracts more than $240 million in research funding annually, 80 percent of which comes from federal funding sources. The mission of the Medical School is to advance the health and well-being of the people of the commonwealth and the world through pioneering education, research, public service and health care delivery with its clinical partner, UMass Memorial Health Care. For more information, visit