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The Oncology Tissue Services Core provides a number of technologies, services and scientific consultation to support cancer research. The Core was formerly known as the Tissue Microarray Core (TMA), and provided TMA-related services, digital slide scanning and analysis, and routine histology services. Immunohistochemistry (IHC), immunofluorescence (IF) in situ hybridization (ISH) and the incorporation of the cytogenetics Core, resulted in the formation of the Oncology Tissue Service Core. It now provides traditional G-band metaphase analysis and FISH technologies, services added to this Core from another Core. These expanded services enhance the ability of Kimmel Cancer Center researchers to perform tissue-based biomarker studies. The Core has constructed more than 826 TMAs for 55 investigators, containing tumor and normal tissue from most major organs, has provided more than 80 new antibody workups and cored more than 2,500 blocks for RNA/DNA studies. It continues to provide essential cytogenetics services. In recent years, there has been a tremendous growth in requests to provide tissue cores from FFPE tissue blocks for RNA and DNA molecular analyses. Instrumentation and expertise are available to automatically capture high-resolution digital images of both standard histology/IHC based slides and TMA slides. The Core obtained an automated slide stainer to convert laboratory discoveries of novel protein staining into clinical biomarkers. The Core provides web-based software tools and two backend databases (TMAJ/Spectrum) to facilitate all facets of research involving TMAs, routine slides and quantitative image analysis.
The Specific Aims of this Core are to:
- Provide affordable, high-quality histology, immunohistochemistry, cytogenetics, nucleic acid harvesting from tissues, digital slide scanning and analysis and tissue microarray construction services.
- Identify and develop new technologies to support and speed translational research in cancer, including automated in-situ hybridization and clinical translation of research immunohistochemistry discoveries.
- Support the Research Programs and respond to the needs of its users by working with specific investigators on new protocols, procedures and custom procedures to meet their evolving histology, immunohistochemistry and slide scanning requirements.
Marc Halushka, M.D., Ph.D., Resource Director
Helen Fedor, Resource Laboratory Manager