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Rapid Autopsy Program Core

Sampling tissues from patients with advanced cancer at autopsy provides unique research opportunities: 1) tumor tissues can be procured in large quantities from many separate bodily sites, and parameters of the autopsy consent are the only limitation on the amount and location of tissue that can be procured; 2) tumor tissues are sampled after disease resistance has occurred, allowing for studies to be performed on metastases where biopsy/surgical tissue is often not available or accessible in sufficient quantity and; 3) tissue samples for multiple researchers/research projects may be collected from a single case.

  •        Centralized Core facility, including administrative, technical and logistical support for performing rapid autopsies on cancer patients succumbing to a wide range of tumor types
  •        Provide expert diagnostic pathology support to qualified investigators within the SKCCC to facilitate translational research
  •        Maintain a biorepository of fresh frozen tissues, FFPE tissues and fluid specimens from rapid autopsy cases with full pathology and clinical annotations that can be accessed by qualified SKCCC investigators
  •        Image archive of still images and whole slide images of relevant histopathology and molecular histopathology slides


600 North Wolfe Street; Department of Pathology  – 2300 ft2



  •        Provide administrative and logistical support for obtaining autopsy consent and conveying participating patients to Johns Hopkins after death
  •        Perform rapid autopsies, when possible, within two to six hours of death, including collection of fresh, frozen and formalin fixed tissue, as well as blood and fluid samples
  •        Supply expert consultation in interpretation of histopathology of autopsy samples
  •        Expand and maintain a biorepository of fresh frozen tissues, FFPE tissues, TMAs and fluid specimens with appropriate pathology and clinical annotations that can be accessed by qualified SKCCC investigators
  •        Create a gross and microscopic image databank, including whole-slide scanned images
  •        Perform biospecimen research on postmortem specimens to enhance understanding of pre-analytical factors affecting biomarker measurements of autopsy specimens. Molecular pathology experiments on tissues, unrelated to biospecimen science research, will be separately carried out in the given Programs utilizing pathologists associated with those Programs


Phone: 410-614-7415
Email (Jowaly Camacho):