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Rex Partners with the International Genomics Consortium as a Key Network Tissue Source Site

Rex Healthcare to Provide Cancer Tissue Samples for the NIH's The Cancer Genome Atlas Project

December 12, 2011

Rex Healthcare Media Contact: Kerry Grace Heckle
(919) 784-4471

IGC Media Contact: Rachael Myer
(602) 850-7041

Phoenix, Ariz. and Raleigh, N.C. - Rex Healthcare announced today that it has agreed to collaborate with The International Genomics Consortium (IGC) in Phoenix, Ariz., to serve as a critical network Tissue Source Site (TSS) to provide cancer tissue samples for analysis in the National Institutes of Health's (NIH's) historic project The Cancer Genome Atlas project (TCGA).  Rex will provide cancer tissue samples under uniform and standardized conditions and also collect specific long-term clinical outcome data to facilitate research into the underlying cancer mechanisms.

IGC's Expression Project for Oncology (expO) has combined its network and mission with TCGA to help create a comprehensive and coordinated effort to accelerate the understanding of the molecular basis of cancer through the application of genome analysis technologies, including large-scale genome sequencing. 

The overarching goal of TCGA is to improve our ability to diagnose, treat and prevent cancer. TCGA is one of the largest initiatives to date to analyze such a wide array of cancers with so many different genomic analyses ranging from sequencing to methylation studies.

The genomic blueprints of each cancer will be available on the web for all scientists to have access to for translational discoveries. TCGA plans to analyze 500 tumors from each cancer type studied by the program and will provide the clinically annotated outcome data along with the complete genomic analysis on the web free of any intellectual property restrictions. 

IGC plans to retain a portion of each sample that it provides to TCGA, if available, to expedite translational discoveries to help patient care, in work separate from TCGA. Additional information on TCGA may be found at http://www.cancergenome.nih.gov/.

"Innovation and technology are paramount at Rex Cancer Center," said Vickie Byler, director of Rex Cancer Center/Clinical Research. "Being part of national research that will translate discoveries from the laboratory into new clinical therapeutics for cancer care is exciting."

"We are honored to partner with Rex Healthcare on this historic NCI initiative to join in the fight against cancer," said Robert Penny, M.D., Ph.D., IGC's CEO and Principal Investigator for both the TSS and Biospecimen Core Resource components of TCGA. 

David Mallery, J.D., M.B.A., IGC's President noted that "Together with Rex, we look forward to providing the critical biospecimens and data necessary to facilitate translational research."

IGC thanks the National Cancer Institute, the National Human Genome Research Institute, Maricopa County, the City of Phoenix, AmeriPath Quest, US Oncology, Science Foundation Arizona, the Flinn Foundation as well as many of the pharmaceutical companies that have provided financial and leadership support to IGC.

Check out Rex's mention in Triangle Medical News' February 2012 "Grand Rounds"
(scroll to bottom): Rex Healthcare Partners with the International Genomics Consortium


About Rex Healthcare

Rex Healthcare, a member of UNC Health Care, is a private, not-for-profit health care system with more than 5,200 co-workers. Rex Healthcare has 665 beds (439 general acute beds and 226 skilled nursing) and treats nearly 34,000 inpatients each year. Rex offers dedicated centers for cancer, surgery, heart and vascular, post-acute rehabilitation and skilled nursing care, wellness and women's care plus dedicated services for bariatric, heartburn, pain management, sleep disorders, diabetes education, wound and emergency care. More than 1,100 physicians are on the Rex medical staff. Rex provides various health care services throughout Wake County with facilities in Apex, Cary, Garner, Holly Springs, Knightdale, Wakefield and downtown Raleigh. Rex was the first hospital in the Triangle to receive Magnet Recognition, placing Rex nurses among the top 6 percent in the nation. Rex was named one of the top 100 Best Places to Work in Healthcare by Modern Healthcare magazine in 2008, 2009 and 2011, and was highlighted as one of the Top 50 Hospitals in the U.S. by Becker's Hospital Review in 2011.

About IGC

The International Genomics Consortium (IGC) is a non-profit medical research organization established to expand upon the discoveries of the Human Genome Project and other systematic sequencing efforts by combining world-class genomic research, bioinformatics, and diagnostic technologies in the fight against cancer and other complex genetic diseases. IGC serves numerous common, unmet needs including: the standardization of the collection of properly consented tissues of interest, the molecular characterization of these tissues, and standardization in the representation and analysis of these results. IGC participates in the translation of genomic discoveries to improve patient care and increase the speed in which new diagnostic, prognostic, and predictive testing, and their associated new drug and treatment regimens are developed. For more information, visit www.intgen.org.