NCI-Frederick's Unique Combination of Resources
NCI-Frederick is much more than a satellite campus of NCI. It is a unique biomedical research resource and one of only 36 Federally Funded Research and Development Centers (FFRDCs) in the country. These facilities are not part of the government, but are operated by universities and nonprofit corporations under federal contracts. They fulfill some of our country's pressing research needs by bridging public and private sectors. FFRDCs study a variety of defense and national security issues, but only one FFRDC - NCI-Frederick - is devoted solely to biomedical research.
This special issue of the NCI Cancer Bulletin pays tribute to NCI-Frederick, which has, for more than 30 years, provided core scientific expertise and advanced technology development to NCI's intramural and extramural researchers, as well as to other NIH institutes and federal agencies.
Through its many advanced technologies, NCI-Frederick strives to speed the translation of laboratory discoveries into therapies for patients. Its capabilities include the capacity to rapidly deliver prototype drugs that meet the FDA's stringent Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) regulations for use in clinical trials - expertise that can help win regulatory approval for new drugs, vaccines, and other therapies. NCI-Frederick has been involved in more than 300 clinical trials, including a vaccine for lymphoma, a vaccine that can prevent cervical cancer, and the test that protects the nation's blood supply from contamination by the AIDS virus. Read more
NCI-Frederick to Help Build Proteomics Pipeline
In the coming months, NCI will establish an Antibody Characterization Laboratory at NCI-Frederick to test antibodies that are produced as part of a new proteomics pipeline created by the Clinical Proteomic Technologies for Cancer Initiative (CPTI).
Antibodies are proteins produced by the immune system in response to other proteins, which are called antigens. In the clinical context, antigens are usually associated with unwanted invaders. Researchers can use these antibodies in a similar fashion to detect antigens in biological samples that may be tied to cancer.
Though antibodies are essential in research and diagnostic laboratories around the world and thousands are available commercially, "the majority of these antibodies are poorly characterized and their quality is unreliable," notes Dr. Henry Rodriguez, who directs NCI's Clinical Proteomic Technologies for Cancer (CPTC) program. Read more