Thursday, May 31, 2012
London Health Sciences Centre
Ontario Tumour Bank Celebrates 10,000 Donor Mark
Dr. Tom Hudson, President and Scientific Director of the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research (OICR), today announced that the Ontario Tumour Bank (OTB) has now banked samples from more than 10,000 donors. This is an important milestone for the OTB, a province-wide biorepository and data bank led by OICR that is focused on the collection of tumour-related blood and tissue samples for cancer research.
The Ontario Tumour Bank provides cancer researchers with high-quality biospecimens and data that are essential to developing better diagnostic tools and new therapies for cancer, said Dr. Hudson. On behalf of OICR I would like to congratulate and thank all those who have worked to reach this milestone and make this initiative such a success.
The OTB is a collaboration between OICR and four academic teaching hospitals across Ontario: Kingston General Hospital, London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC), St. Josephs Healthcare Hamilton and The Ottawa Hospital. At each hospital dedicated tumour bank staff collect samples and clinical data from consenting donors while following a strict set of procedures and ethical guidelines. The OTB also coordinates the storage, annotation, further processing and distribution of the samples.
LHSC joined the OTB in 2004. Since then, more than 3,500 patients at LHSC have consented to donate to the program. This is facilitated locally by the Departments of Pathology and Surgery, led by Dr. Jeremy Parfitt. LHSC leads the provincial network of collection sites with more than 27,500 samples and 40 per cent of the programs dispensed samples.
London Health Sciences Centre offers our congratulations to the OTB on reaching this important milestone. We are proud to be part of this important collaborative effort, which will aid in cancer research and treatment for years to come, said Bonnie Adamson, LHSC President and CEO.
Samples collected by the OTB help cancer researchers to analyze cancer at the genetic and molecular level and they are essential to help map the genomic changes present in many forms of cancer. This will help to build the next generation of diagnostic tools and treatments for cancer, including more personalized medicine.
Having 10,000 donors is about more than just a number. It shows that both donors and researchers continue to trust the Ontario Tumour Bank to successfully carry out its important role in Ontarios cancer research community, said Dr. John Bartlett, Provincial Principal Investigator, OTB and Director of OICRs Transformative Pathology Platform. Id like to thank the donors who have contributed to the Ontario Tumour Bank for their commitment to moving cancer research forward and to helping future generations of cancer patients.
Reaching this point would not have been possible without the generosity of donors themselves and the commitment to excellence demonstrated by our partner sites across Ontario, said Ms. Sugy Kodeeswaran, Director, Ontario Tumour Bank. Now that the Ontario Tumour Bank has more than 111,000 samples from 10,000 donors, we can offer researchers access to the diversity and large numbers of samples required for significant progress in research.
For more information on the Ontario Tumour Bank, please visit www.ontariotumourbank.ca.
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