SAIC-Frederick exercised its option to have Complete Genomics sequence the DNA from more than 500 pediatric cancer cases. Each case consists of a tumor-normal pair and some cases include a relapsed tumor. The firm is entitled to more than $8 million for completing this part of the project, which is funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
This additional study follows the first phase of the project in which Complete Genomics sequenced and analyzed 100 genomes (50 tumor-normal pairs) from pediatric cancer cases. The initial pilot study focused on five childhood cancers: acute lymphoblastic leukemia, acute myeloid leukemia, neuroblastoma, osteosarcoma, and Wilms tumor.
SAIC-Frederick is the prime contractor for the NCI's R&D facility in Frederick, MD. The goal of the ongoing study is to identify and verify somatic mutations. The project is part of the NCI's Therapeutically Applicable Research to Generate Effective Treatments (TARGET) Initiative, which seeks to use genomic technologies to rapidly identify valid therapeutic targets in childhood cancers. Resulting research-ready data will be submitted to the TARGET Database, where it will be a resource for NCI researchers.