Rutgers’ Human Genetics Institute Wins $19 Million Federal Contract
Article ID: 617895
Released: 14-May-2014 9:00 AM EDT
Source Newsroom: Rutgers' Office of Research and Economic Development
Newswise — NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. – The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) has awarded a five-year contract worth up to $19 million to RUCDR Infinite Biologics®, a unit of Rutgers’ Human Genetics Institute of New Jersey. The world’s largest university-based biorepository, RUCDR Infinite Biologics is located on Rutgers’ Busch Campus in Piscataway.
Under the new contract, RUCDR will expand and enhance the services it provides through its NIDA Center for Genetic Studies, which it has supported for the past 15 years. The Center provides genomic services to NIDA-funded researchers.
Because the Rutgers operation has been continuously acquiring new equipment and systems, and refining the techniques its staff employs, the genomic testing and analysis for NIDA studies will be significantly more sophisticated than in previous years, according to Jay Tischfield, CEO and founder of RUCDR Infinite Biologics and the Duncan and Nancy Macmillan Distinguished Professor of Genetics at Rutgers.
“Under this new contract with NIDA, we will be utilizing innovative technologies to support research, such as microarray typing and high-throughput sequencing for genomic and epigenomic analyses,” Tischfield said. “We also will support NIDA projects that employ induced pluripotent stem cells to facilitate the molecular and cellular study of brain development and addiction processes.”
The NIDA Center for Genetic Studies is a scientific resource for informing the human molecular genetics of drug addiction. The center stores clinical and diagnostic data, pedigree information and biomaterials (including DNA, plasma, cryopreserved lymphocytes and/or cell lines) from human subjects participating in studies that form the NIDA Genetics Consortium.
The contract includes receiving data along with blood samples or other biospecimens from funded grants and/or contracts supporting research on the genetics of addiction and addiction vulnerability; processing these data and materials to create databases, serum, DNA, RNA and cell lines; distributing all data and materials in the NIDA Human Genetics Initiative to qualified investigators; and maintaining storage of data and biomaterials.
RUCDR has a similar agreement with the National Institute of Mental Health to support the NIMH Center for Collaborative Genomics Research on Mental Disorders, which provides services to NIMH-funded scientists studying mental disorders. A $44.5 million, five-year cooperative agreement renewal was awarded in 2013.
About RUCDR Infinite Biologics – RUCDR Infinite Biologics offers a complete and integrated selection of biological sample processing, analysis and biorepository services to government agencies, academic institutions, foundations and biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies within the global scientific community. RUCDR Infinite Biologics provides DNA, RNA and cell lines with clinical data to hundreds of research laboratories for studies on mental health and developmental disorders, drug and alcohol abuse, diabetes and digestive, liver and kidney diseases. RUCDR completed an $11.8 million expansion and renovation of its facilities last year. Read more at www.rucdr.org.
About the Human Genetics Institute of New Jersey – The mission of the Human Genetics Institute of New Jersey (HGINJ) is to operate a world-renowned institute of excellence in human and medical genetics, to collaborate with and enhance research and training programs in the life sciences of Rutgers, and to facilitate scientific relationships with the private sector. Core program areas of study include brain disorders, cancer genomics, computational genetics, reproductive genetics and stem cells. Learn more at www.hginj.org.
About Rutgers – Established in 1766, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, is America’s eighth oldest institution of higher learning and one of the nation’s premier public research universities, serving more than 65,000 students on three campuses. Rutgers–New Brunswick is a member of the prestigious Association of American Universities and joins the Big Ten Conference in July 2014. Rutgers ranks #1 among U.S. universities for chemistry R&D funding. The Office of Research and Economic Development provides a central point for industry to access Rutgers, including a new website, businessportal.rutgers.edu.