SDI (Strategic Diagnostics Inc), a provider of biotechnology-based products and services, and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center jointly announced they will collaborate to discover biomarkers for use in the early detection of a variety of cancers. Initial studies will center on pancreatic cancer.

SDI will provide the Hutchinson Center with approximately 1,000 antibodies for the collaborative studies from its unique collection of cancer antigen antibodies. The antibodies, which were designed using SDI’s proprietary Genomic Antibody Technology™, will be provided to Paul Lampe, PhD, full member and associate program head of the Molecular Diagnostics Program at the Hutchinson Center.

The SDI cancer antigen antibodies will be printed by the Lampe laboratory onto microarray slides and tested against up to 200 characterized patient case samples and controls in a first discovery screening assay. Upon completion, the Hutchinson Center and SDI plan to jointly publish the biomarker findings of these studies. SDI will have an option for the Hutchinson Center’s commercial rights to any work that is developed during the agreement.

A biomarker is a biological molecule that can be found in body fluids such as blood or in tissues that is a sign of a normal or abnormal process, or of a condition or disease. A biomarker may also be used to see how well the body responds to a treatment for a disease or condition. It can also be called a molecular marker or a signature molecule.

“We are excited about the opportunity to explore SDI’s proprietary Genomic Antibody Technology™ through access to its Cancer Antigen Antibody Collection with the hope of identifying novel cancer biomarkers that will advance the prognostic and diagnostic potential for these challenging diseases,” Lampe said.

The Lampe laboratory investigates the control of cell growth both at the cell biological/mechanistic level and through cancer biomarker discovery. Lampe and colleagues study the cell biology that connects gap junctions and intercellular communication (GJIC) with the control of cell growth and the cell cycle and how this relationship is disrupted during carcinogenesis.

Commenting on the announcement, Mr. Fran DiNuzzo, president and CEO of SDI, said, “We are extremely pleased to be collaborating with such a world-class team of researchers. This initiative exemplifies the value of our suite of fully-integrated immuno-solution capabilities, which includes our proprietary Genomic Antibody TechnologyTM. Moreover, it is aligned with our strategic direction as an emerging contributor to the biomarker discovery and development community. It is our hope that findings from these studies progress to help facilitate early detection of the most prominent and dangerous cancers.”

Source: Strategic Diagnostics Inc and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center