Thermo Fisher collaborates with AstraZeneca and academics

Published: 18-Sep-2020

The collaborations are part of Thermo Fisher's development of solutions for unmet needs in clinical biomarker discovery

Thermo Fisher Scientific has announced collaborations between its Precision Medicine Science Center (PMSC) with AstraZeneca and the University of Nebraska Medical Center.

The collaborations aim to facilitate standardized workflows between pharma and academia to streamline the transition from biomarker research to clinical implementation, creating opportunities for precision medicine.

Ongoing and planned studies with both AstraZeneca and the University of Nebraska Medical Center will utilise standardised plasma protein profiling workflows, including Thermo Fisher's plasma protein profiling workflow for biomarker discovery, for a range of conditions.

The standardized workflows consist of automated sample preparation for untargeted and targeted methods in combination with the Thermo Scientific Orbitrap Exploris 480 and 240 mass spectrometers.

This collaboration aims to evaluate and establish a model for clinical proteomics, using advanced sample processing and downstream analytical applications

"Precision medicine is becoming a greater area of interest across a range of different diseases and has, therefore, faced challenges effectively scaling to meet clinical needs," said Emily Chen, Senior Director, Precision Medicine Science Center, Thermo Fisher Scientific. "The goal of the Precision Medicine Science Center is to construct end-to-end workflow solutions that generate impactful data from discovery studies with large human cohorts and to harness the power of molecular profiling to improve the outcomes of patient care."

Ventzi Hristova, Senior Scientist, Dynamic Omics, Antibody Discovery and Protein Engineering, R&D at AstraZeneca, said: "Powered by technological innovation, omics is proving to be one of the richest sources of data in all of science. Clinical proteomics is an emerging field aimed at improving patient care through the development of sensitive, high-throughput methods for in-depth proteomic characterisation of clinical samples.

"This collaboration aims to evaluate and establish a model for clinical proteomics, using advanced sample processing and downstream analytical applications, that has the potential to help us identify new drug targets and biomarkers."

The University of Nebraska Medical Center is collaborating with Thermo Fisher's PMSC to utilise the company's standardised plasma protein profiling workflows to analyse clinical samples in an aneurysm study. The study is supported by the National Institutes of Health-National Institute on Aging (NIH-NIA) and done in collaboration with Vanderbilt University, the University of Maryland and the University of Wisconsin.

Merry Lindsey, Ph.D., Chair and Stokes-Shackleford Professor, Department of Cellular and Integrative Physiology and Director, Center for Heart and Vascular research, University of Nebraska Medical Center, said: "Thermo Fisher's mass spectrometry platform and workflow will allow us to analyse a large cohort of plasma samples and answer highly significant clinical questions."

Bernard Timothy Baxter, MD, Professor, Department of Surgery Division of Vascular Surgery, University of Nebraska Medical Center, who is leading the NIH-NIA aneurysm study said: "There is a drastic need for this type of technology that can produce better indicators/blood tests and can tell us who has an undiagnosed aneurysm, and which aneurysms are likely to progress rapidly and need closer observation."

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