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May 31, 2011

SAIC-Frederick and Biomatrica Ally to Improve Tumor Analysis

  • SAIC-Frederick researchers at the Laboratory Animal Sciences Program will explore integration of reagents from Biomatrica into molecular pathology workflows under a technology collaboration designed to improve molecular analysis of tumors.

    The collaboration aims to develop better processes to isolate nucleic acids from tumor samples collected by pathologists in the clinic, while increasing process efficiencies and integrity of RNA isolated from histological samples for cancer studies.

    "We have developed novel formulations that protect nucleic acids (RNA and DNA) in blood, tissue, cell lines, saliva, biopsy material, etc. at room temperature with comparable or better performance than traditional ultracold temperature systems," says Rolf Muller, Ph.D., Biomatrica's president, CSO, and founder. "These products have the added benefits of yielding significant cost savings, improved workflow, higher sample quality, scalability, and flexibility."

    Biomatrica’s core technology is designed for use in preserving complex biological samples and assays and is based on the principles of anhydrobiosis ("life without water"), a natural mechanism that allows multicellular organisms to survive extreme environments.

    SAIC-Frederick is the operations and technical support contractor for the NCI’s R&D center in Frederick, MD. It is focused on translating new technologies for diagnosing, treating, and preventing cancer and HIV/AIDS.

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Scientifically Studying Ecstasy

MDMA (commonly known as the empathogen “ecstasy”) is classified as a Schedule 1 drug, which is reserved for compounds with no accepted medical use and a high abuse potential. Two researchers from Stanford, however, call for a rigorous scientific exploration of MDMA's effects to identify precisely how the drug works, the data from which could be used to develop therapeutic compounds.

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