Posts (7)

2 days ago · Mayo researchers' endometrial cancer discovery could lead to window of opportunity for prevention

What if a doctor could alert a woman a year or
more in advance that she is likely to develop endometrial cancer? Researchers
at Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine have found evidence linking
functional modification of certain genes to the emergence of the disease,
providing a novel opportunity for intervention and prevention.

The new finding, reported in the journal Gynecologic Oncology, is far-reaching, both to the basic understanding of endometrial cancer — affecting more than 600,000 women in the U.S. — and for the search for preventative measures. Endometrial cancer is the fourth most common cancer in women, with nearly 62,000 new cases and 12,000 deaths estimated in 2019. Incidence rates are expected to rise significantly over the next decade, driven by environmental factors, obesity and diabetes.

“We found that some of the epigenetic markers that are known to be associated with endometrial cancer are altered months to years before the development of the disease,” says Marina Walther-Antonio, Ph.D. “Patients who have increased methylation in particular genes in benign endometrial biopsies are more likely to develop endometrial cancer in the future.”

Flipping the switch: finding genes that have been “turned off”

Dr. Walther-Antonio says “epigenetic markers”
are changes in gene activity that control the functional gene level and can
effectively turn the gene “on” or “off.” 

“In this sense, the gene can be free of
mutations, yet be in practice, non-functional — equivalent to a perfectly
functional car that will not respond to the accelerator pedal because the key
is not turned on in the ignition,” she describes.

“We found that some of the epigenetic markers that are known to be associated with endometrial cancer are altered months to years before the development of the disease.” – Dr. Walther-Antonio

Marina Walther-Antonio, Ph.D.

Methylation, she explains, is in this analogy,
controlling the position of the key in the ignition. This disruption of gene
functioning through epigenetic processes such as methylation can be a hallmark
of cancer.

The research team studied samples of women over
nine years whose endometrial biopsies were benign, but subsequently developed
endometrial cancer an average of one year later. To demonstrate their
hypothesis, the team studied the promoters of four particular genes that are
reported as hypermethylated in endometrial cancer. Which, in this case, is
turning the key in the ignition to an “off” position, and in effect, shutting
the gene function down.

“We could see that the women who developed
cancer in the future were already different at the time of the biopsy,” Dr.
Walther-Antonio explains. “They already presented a hypermethylated state in
these genes back then.”

Discovering a missed opportunity for prevention

Co-author of the study, Andrea Mariani, M.D.
M.S.
, a gynecology oncologist surgeon who has conducted extensive
research on endometrial cancer over two decades, says he developed the study in
hopes of discovering this “missed opportunity for prevention.”

“Post-menopausal women would go to the doctor
because of bleeding, and they would get a biopsy of their uterus and the biopsy
was benign, and then sometime down the road they developed endometrial cancer,”
he says. “We call this a missed opportunity.”

Andrea Mariani, M.D. M.S.

Dr. Mariani previously demonstrated that as many as 28% of endometrial cancer patients had a previous non-malignant endometrial biopsy during their lifetime.

“This means that approximately one quarter of endometrial cancers can be potentially prevented if we target this population,” he explains. 

In his search for answers, Dr. Mariani, who also
serves on Mayo Clinic Robotics Subcommittee and collaborates on the use of robotic surgery
for the treatment of endometrial cancer, pulled together a team
of scientists to combine their expertise.

“I am a physician, I am a surgeon, and I can help define where we need to go, but then we need people like Dr. Walther-Antonio and the other scientists who co-authored this paper, to lead the studies in the lab, and working on identifying and characterizing those genes,” he explains.

“Post-menopausal women would go to the doctor because of bleeding, and they would get a biopsy of their uterus and the biopsy was benign, and then sometime down the road they developed endometrial cancer.” – Dr. Mariani.

Dr. Mariani says fortunately, most women are
diagnosed with an early stage of endometrial cancer.

“Why? Because many are post-menopausal patients
who start to bleed, and so they seek the attention of the doctor. They get
scared,” Dr. Mariani says.

But not all outcomes are favorable, he adds.
Nearly 20 percent of patients are diagnosed with an aggressive form of the
cancer.

“Studying this group of patients is the most
important in studying endometrial cancer,” he says. “We are focusing on
treating these patients, but also, we are studying how to prevent this cancer,”
he says.

Two biomarkers may help identify endometrial
cancer risk

The study comes on the heels of a previously published endometrial cancer study by Dr.
Walther-Antonio and Dr. Mariani
, which identifies a
reproductive tract microbiome signature promoted in part by post
menopause. 

“With results from these two studies, we will
look at the two biomarkers — the microbiome and epigenetic — to see if these
are connected or just happen to both be biomarkers in cancer,” she says. “We
think the microbiome is probably the driver, but it could very well be the
other way around too. We just don’t know.”

Dr. Mariani says obesity is another known
factor.

“This may represent an opportunity to prevent the development of endometrial cancer altogether.” – Dr. Walther-Antonio

“The reason for that is obesity creates in women
a very high estrogen environment, and this stimulates the uterine lining, and
so this is a very high risk factor for endometrial cancer,” Dr. Mariani
says. 

Dr. Mariani and Dr. Walther-Antonio plan to expand
their studies on microbiome and methylation, in a larger group of patients with
aggressive endometrial cancer. 

By identifying molecular markers of the disease,
an effective tool could be developed to predict which patients are at high risk
of developing endometrial cancer, Dr. Walther-Antonio says.

“More importantly, these markers could also be targeted for primary prevention during the window of time between a benign biopsy that contains altered markers and the development of the disease,” she says. “This may represent an opportunity to prevent the development of endometrial cancer altogether.”

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Tue, Feb 11 6:00am · 7 ways Mayo Clinic is leading to cure, connect and transform health care

 

Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine’s physicians and researchers are leading the way to cure, connect and transform health care by combining their expertise to solve serious or complex medical conditions. Here are seven innovative ways the Center’s investigators are working together to provide patients with answers, treatment options and optimism.

 

  1. Cultivating cutting-edge cancer studies and therapies

Researchers are taking a distinctive all-hands-on-deck approach to cancer, driven by advanced genetic analysis and clinical sciences to personalize treatments for every cancer patient. Advances include using a radioactive tracer with molecular imaging to identify early biochemical changes linked to prostate cancer, and testing individualized treatments for chemotherapy-resistant breast cancer. In addition, a new genomic lens to colorectal and other cancers is helping researchers identify which cancer types run in families. Investigators are also targeting advanced cancer, using a patient’s biopsy to create miniature tumor replicas for testing therapies outside their body.

 

  1. Rooting out rare and undiagnosed diseases

Nearly 25 million Americans — about 1 in 13 people — suffer from a rare, undiagnosed condition. Many search for years for a diagnosis for unexplained, debilitating symptoms. Mayo Clinic researchers are helping to provide answers, diagnosing nearly 30% of patients by mapping their genetic blueprint, including using whole-exome testing, which sequences more than 20,000 genes. Researchers are continuing to search for answers for the remaining 70% of cases by using a tool to pinpoint RNA aberrations that underlie rare inherited diseases. They are also turning to a combined analysis of “omics” data, including genomics (mapping genomes), proteomics (study of proteins in a cell) and metabolomics (study of chemical processes) to identify the underlying causes of rare diseases. 

 

  1. Boosting medical research with biobanks

Mayo Clinic operates a world-class, scalable biorepository infrastructure, which includes two specimen processing core laboratories and several large centralized biospecimen collections.  Researchers are using the biological samples and health information to study how genes affect health and disease, and to uncover paths toward developing and delivering precision medicine. Mayo is working to generate whole exome sequencing and genotype data of 100,000 DNA samples from consented Mayo Clinic Biobank participants. In addition, Mayo Clinic also serves as the home of the nation’s biobank with the NIH All of Us Research Program.

 

  1. Advancing medicine with artificial intelligence 

Researchers are increasing their use of artificial intelligence to find patterns in vast amounts of data, and to create algorithms for predicting diseases and drug response, including anti-depression, congestive heart failure and rheumatoid arthritis. They are also using the technology to develop a digital pathology workflow to detect a genetic mutation in melanoma to reduce the time to treatment and offer improvements in survival.

 

  1. Bolstering understanding of bacteria

Researchers are studying a complex community of genetically distinct gut bacteria, called the microbiome, that thrive in and around the digestive tract. They have found some of the microbes play an important role in maintaining health while others enable diseases, such as cancer. Mayo is also supporting a new phage therapy program to offer a potential life-saving alternative to antibiotics. Phages are naturally occurring viruses that target and kill specific bacterial cells, including those that have grown resistant to multiple antibiotics. Mayo researchers are sequencing the genomic contents of single bacterial cells, paving the way for a potential lifesaving test for sepsis and other hard-to-treat bacterial-related infections. 

 

  1. Tailoring medications to a person’s genetic makeup

Mayo researchers are leaders in combining the science of drugs and the study of genes to provide patients with safe medications and doses. In one study, researchers are analyzing 77 pharmacogenes from Mayo Clinic Biobank samples from 10,000 patients. Once the study is completed, an interpretive report will be placed into each of the patients’ electronic health records, allowing their physicians to have information about any drug-gene interactions when prescribing medications. The goal is to avoid  potentially harmful side effects for patients, while boosting the effectiveness of prescribed therapies.

 

  1. Exploring epigenomic impacts

Epigenomics researchers are pinpointing new molecular targets for therapy by studying the differences between a person’s genetic DNA and mutated DNA that can alter a person’s genetic code and be passed onto future generations. They are also exploring how other factors such as environment and lifestyle, influence how genes are expressed. For example In one project, investigators hypothesize that gene expression changes in the brain, due to altered DNA methylation, play a central role in a person’s risk for developing Alzheimer’s disease.

 

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Tue, Jan 14 6:00am · Mayo researchers studying 'promising' new approach to treating advanced cancer, 1 patient at a time, 1 tumor at a time

George Vasmatzis, Ph.D., stands in a Mayo Clinic laboratory dedicated to the Ex Vivo study, which tailors the most effective drug, or drug combination, to each individual cancer tumor.

A collaborative team of Mayo Clinic scientists is studying an innovative strategy for treating advanced cancer, using genomics and human tumor samples as their guide. The novel approach, called Ex Vivo, creates a miniature cancer replica for testing therapies outside a patient’s body, combined with a comprehensive genomic analysis of a patient’s cancer cells.

“We are now at the cusp of understanding cancer at the individual level, the molecular complexity level, says George Vasmatzis, Ph.D., study leader and co-director of Mayo Clinic’s Biomarker Discovery Program within the Center for Individualized Medicine.

Dr. Vasmatzis says Ex Vivo ultimately tailors the most effective drug, or drug combination, to each individual cancer tumor. He envisions the study leading to a transformation in how patients with cancer are diagnosed and treated.

“We were blind and now we can see,” Dr. Vasmatzis says, “because if you can understand cancer, you can manage it.”

Reshaping precision medicine

More than 1.8 million people in the U.S. were diagnosed with cancer in 2019, according to the American Cancer Society, and an estimated 610,000 deaths were attributed to the disease. A majority of the cancer deaths were the result of metastases, when clusters of cancer cells circulate and spread to vital organs.

Panos Anastasiadis, Ph.D., studies cell-to-cell adhesion and cell interactions in cancer tumors at a Mayo Clinic laboratory. 

The Ex Vivo strategy centers on finding treatment options where none have existed, by knowing the full story of each tumor and recognizing every patient’s cancer as a unique disease of mutated cells.

A former electrical engineer who has dedicated his career to unlocking the mysteries of cancer, Dr. Vasmatzis says cancer can no longer be viewed as one disease, or even a dozen diseases.

“Because even within the same tumor, different cells can have different genetic changes,” he explains. “Cancer cells evolve and multiply, and when cancer becomes advanced it loses the connection of where it started from — the lung, breast, brain — and it becomes more individual. It is why drugs that are fully effective in some patients provide little or no response in others.” 

 

Ex Vivo in action

The Ex Vivo process starts with taking a small biopsy of a patient’s cancer tumor and dissecting the genetic details at high resolution to find out where the cancer is going and what it is doing. Dr. Vasmatzis says peeling away the many layers of complex information takes a team of highly specialized medical experts in oncology, pathology, biology, genetics and more.

“Our team is carefully constructed to run like an engine, and this is where it happens,” he says, walking through the laboratory, where clinicians and scientists are peering into microscopes, running high-tech machines and studying whole genome images on large computer screens.

“We are now at the cusp of understanding cancer at the individual level, the molecular complexity level.” – George Vasmatzis, Ph.D.

George Vasmatzis, Ph.D. (left) and Sotiris Sotiriou, M.D., look at images of DNA and RNA extracted from tumor cells, at a Mayo Clinic laboratory.

“For example, a very sophisticated tissue acquisition team is extremely important in making sure we are extracting the right cell types,” he explains. “We need molecular biology expertise to get billions of bits of data out of the cells and amplify that information for sequencing. Then, you need analytics people and mathematicians to be able to interpret and develop algorithms.”

Dr. Vasmatzis says, many times, the entire lab is focused on just one patient’s cancer.

“One person at a time, one tumor at a time,” he says.

Replicating cancer tumors

After uncovering the cancer’s genomic roadmap, the second part of the study begins with testing existing FDA-approved drugs on the cancer cells.

Overseeing the microcancer portion of the study and co-leading the project is Panos Anastasiadis, Ph.D., a cancer biologist and chair of the Mayo Clinic Department of Cancer Biology, with expertise in cell-to-cell adhesion and cell interactions in cancer tumors. 

Dr. Vasmatzis says early results of the first 100 Ex Vivo tests are “promising.”

“Ex Vivo enables us to stay ahead of the cancer instead of behind it,” he says. “This is the way forward for individualized medicine.” 

Dr. Anastasiadis and his team use a second piece of a patient’s tumor to create 3-D miniature cancer replicas.

Image of DNA

“We separate all the cells that formed that tumor,” he explains. “So whatever that tumor was, now it is individual cells.”

Then, small numbers of cells are divided into liquid droplets, where the cells regroup, he describes.

“The cells that were originally part of the tumor structure were adhering to each other,” he explains. “And they adhere to each other again in the 3-D cultures.”

Dr. Anastasiadis says the cells form miniature versions of the tumor that was originally inside the patient’s body.

“Only now it is outside of the patient’s body and we can test drugs on it,” he says. “And we’re looking for the drugs and drug combinations that target the genomic alterations in each patient’s individual tumor, and that will kill most, or all of the cells,” he explains. 

Each miniature cancer model can screen dozens of drug candidates, including combinations not tried before, as well as immunotherapies and viral therapies.

“Using advanced genomics, we usually identify quite a few, maybe 10 to 20 potential targets for treatment,” he says. “Microcancer screening identifies the most effective therapy outside the body. Our theory is that when we treat the patient with this therapy, we will also have a strong response to treatment.”

“Ex Vivo enables us to stay ahead of the cancer instead of behind it. This is the way forward for individualized medicine.”  – Panos Anastasiadis, Ph.D.

Strength in numbers

Dr. Anastasiadis emphasizes the strength of Ex Vivo is in doing both parts: the genomics and the miniature cancers. He says doing just one or the other only paints a portion of the picture.

“Through genomics, we know only certain mutations or amplifications, which we call ‘driver genes’ or ‘driver mutations,’” he says. “Knowing just the genomics is inconclusive. You need both.”

He points to the “HER2 protein” in breast cancer as a good example. Patients with human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) positive breast cancer, accounting for one in five breast cancer cases, are treated with HER2-targeted therapy, but it is not always effective.

“We don’t know why just 70% of patients respond to the HER2-targeted therapy while 30% do not,” he says.  “Complicating things, in most cases you have more than one potential driver, but you don’t know where to target therapy”.

Dr. Anastasiadis says that by testing a drug on the tumor before testing it in the patient can clear these uncertainties. He says Ex Vivo seeks to eliminate the trial and error of patients being exposed to drugs that are often toxic and provide no benefit.

“Ex Vivo is the paradigm we need. There are very few metastatic or advanced cancers for which available therapies provide meaningful longevity.” – Minetta Liu, M.D.

Minetta Liu, M.D.

From innovation to patient care

After the completion of each Ex Vivo test, researchers and clinicians gather for a comprehensive review, including Minetta Liu, M.D., a Mayo Clinic medical oncologist and research chair for the Department of Oncology. 

“Ex Vivo is the paradigm we need,” says Dr. Liu, whose clinical focus is on breast oncology.

Dr. Liu emphasizes the study is not designed to treat patients yet, but when it does translate to clinical care at Mayo Clinic, she believes it could be life-changing.

“There are very few metastatic or advanced cancers for which available therapies provide meaningful longevity,” Dr. Liu says. “Precision drug selection is clearly needed. This will be accomplished through genomics and functional modeling to gauge which therapies will work best for an individual at that particular point in their disease course.”

The Ex Vivo team plans to continue the study for one- to two more years before bringing the procedure to the clinic.

“What I’m hoping is that as we gain knowledge, we will start seeing patterns that will work,” Dr. Vasmatzis says. “We have a lot of work to do to take the next step, but we are all passionate in bringing this to our patients in the near future.”

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Dec 30, 2019 · In Florida, a powerhouse of cancer research

By Sara Nick

The Mayo Clinic Cancer Center, which spans Mayo Clinic’s Arizona, Florida and Minnesota locations, has 10 distinct research programs funded by the National Cancer Institute that are centered on broad areas such as immunology and gene therapy, or specific tumor types such as brain and gastrointestinal. Each research topic is treated with a multidisciplinary approach that ties together science, clinical relevance and prevention — a depth and breadth that lends itself to discovery and patient application.

Researchers with Mayo Clinic’s Center for Individualized Medicine are working to develop and test a new strategy to improve cancer care. In one initiative, scientists take a sample from a patient’s tumor, subject it to a number of high-tech analyses, and convene a multidisciplinary team to identify which existing therapies are most likely to work in each case. Then their suggestions are tested in the laboratory using miniature 3D cultures of the patient’s original tumor. If a cancer treatment is found to be effective there, then it could be used to help the individual. 

“Not only is this a testament to what’s possible for individualized medicine, it’s a way for cancer researchers to work closely with clinicians to help patients,” says Dr. Anastasiadis. 

Read more…

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Dec 11, 2019 · In a first, researchers sequence single bacterial cells, paving path for rapid sepsis test

Mayo Clinic senior research fellow Yuguang Liu, Ph.D., looks into the microfluidic platform she developed for sequencing genomic contents of single bacterial cells.

For the first time, Mayo Clinic researchers are sequencing the genomic contents of single bacterial cells. The technique may pave the way for a potential lifesaving test for sepsis, a serious and sometimes deadly condition caused by the body’s response to an infection. Rather than waiting for days to identify the source of a patient’s infection, the new test could provide an answer in hours and help pinpoint an effective therapy.

“When you’re dealing with bacteria, it only takes a few resistant cells to give a patient a bad outcome,” says Marina Walther-Antonio, Ph.D., associate consultant in the department of Surgery, and assistant professor in the Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine Microbiome Program, with a joint appointment in the department of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

“In principle, the research will enable the identification of pathogens within a few hours, buying precious time in what is often a life threatening battle,” Dr. Walther-Antonio says.

Mayo Clinic researchers, Yuguang Liu, Ph.D. (left) and Marina Walther-Antonio Ph.D. (right), look at bacterial cells.

Rocketed
to space

Mayo Clinic’s vast achievement of extracting DNA and RNA from single bacterial cells started as a study on the International Space Station as part of a large multidisciplinary team effort designated as BIOMEX (Biology and Mars Experiment), where three types of tiny microorganisms spent almost two years in orbit. Once back on Earth, Dr. Walther-Antonio, an astrobiologist who worked with NASA Astrobiology Institute during her training, set out to investigate whether the cells had mutated in order to survive in space, away from Earth’s protection. She believed the study would play a key role in understanding how to treat diseases in humans. 

The
only thing missing was the tool needed to retrieve the genomic details that
were locked tightly inside the cells. 

Dr.
Walther-Antonio turned to Mayo Clinic senior research fellow Yuguang Liu,
Ph.D., an electrical engineer from Shanghai, China, who received her Ph.D. in
biological applications at the University of Cincinnati.

“Dr. Liu is one of the only engineers in the world with this kind of expertise,” Dr. Walther-Antonio says. 

Dr.
Liu, an expert in microfluidic platforms, recalls when she eagerly accepted the
challenge.

“I
knew it had never been done before, but I came here to identify problems that
needed to be solved,” she says.

Yuguang Liu, Ph.D. connects a microfluidic platform to a machine to isolate and sequence single bacterial cells.

Bacterial cells, found in every habitat on Earth, are generally smaller than a pinhead, with a thick protective outer wall to enable survival in harsh environments, such as the human gut, bloodstream, soil and waters in extreme temperatures or under high radiation. Some bacterial cells help plants absorb nitrogen, others assist with human digestion. Many cause diseases. All can divide and multiply exponentially, with mutations occurring throughout the process. 

A
unique tool

“Genomic
sequencing has been done in human cells, but there is tremendous difficulty to
do it in bacterial cells because they are very hard to break down without
damaging the minute amount of DNA inside with methods compatible with
downstream processing,” Dr. Liu explains.

Against
great odds and in just months, Dr. Liu accomplished the unprecedented task by
formulating a chemical-based “cocktail” to help break down the strong cell wall
while keeping its fragile ingredients intact. She also made a special
microfluidic platform — a credit card-sized piece of plastic with short,
pin-like plastic spikes and raised lines that form a grid design for controlling
and manipulating fluids. The chip contains nano-sized chambers for
compartmentalizing single bacterial cells. 

“This
tool can take the bacterial single cells and extract the DNA and RNA and
amplify them and sequence them to see exactly what they are and what they are
doing,” Dr. Liu explains, as she connects the chip to a machine with dozens of
clear thin tubes that distribute gas pressure to operate the chip for isolating
the cells and DNA/RNA amplification.

“We
are now able to look at the genome to understand what drugs they are resistant
to,” Dr. Liu explains.

Yuguang Liu, Ph.D., looks at single bacterial cells through a microscope.

Dr.
Walther-Antonio says she was amazed with how quickly Dr. Liu accomplished the task.

“She came to me with the results and said, ‘I think it kind of worked,’” Dr. Walther-Antonio recalls. “And I said, ‘Did you try it again?’ And she said, ‘Yes, 10 times.’”

Rapid
sepsis diagnosis

Dr.
Walther-Antonio says her team is now able to expand the technique to develop a
real-time test for sepsis, which is often hard to diagnose and difficult to
determine the most effective antibiotics to use on a patient. Without rapid
treatment, sepsis can lead to septic shock, organ failure and death. In 2018,
nearly 270,000 people in the U.S. died as a result of sepsis, according to the
Centers for Disease Control. 

“The
standard of care for sepsis currently involves culturing a patient’s blood
sample and that always takes at least a couple of days,” she says. “In the
meantime, you’re given a cocktail of antibiotics to try to save your life, and
those who survive suffer lifelong side effects.”

Dr.
Walther-Antonio envisions an automated process for identifying bacterial
pathogens in sepsis within a few hours for time sensitive intervention, with an
overall goal of saving lives.

Yuguang Liu holds up a microfluidic platform she designed for separating bacterial cells from human cells .

At
the heart of the project, called “Answers in Hours,” is another microfluidic
platform made by Dr. Liu — this one will separate human cells from bacterial
cells.

“In a
blood sample, there are very low amounts of bacteria,” Dr. Liu says. “Most are
human cells, which overwhelmingly hide the bacterial cells. So in this
platform, we have a measure to remove the human component so we are only
detecting the bacteria.”

Dr. Walther-Antonio says knowing the genomic makeup of a tiny single bacterial cell opens the door to a world of discoveries, such as detecting the recurrence of pathogens early, and for basic science to understand what promotes the emergence of resistant strains.

She says research of patient sample testing is estimated to start in 2020, with plans to eventually incorporate the test into a clinical setting if success is reached.

The project was originally conceptualized by Heidi Nelson, M.D., and is also led by Nicholas Chia, Ph.D., Bernard and Edith Waterman co-director for the Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine Microbiome Program, and Robin Patel, M.D., chair of the Division of Clinical Microbiology and director of the Infectious Diseases Research Laboratory.

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Sep 19, 2019 · One Discovery Square provides a hub for innovation, state-of-the-art labs, top researchers

One Discovery Square combines innovative Mayo Clinic labs with medical businesses and creative start-up companies in the heart of downtown Rochester, MN. 

Researchers, physicians and staff with the Advanced Diagnostics Laboratory, a joint collaboration between the Mayo Clinic Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology and the Center for Individualized Medicine, will take part in a community celebration of One Discovery Square on Sept. 19 from 4-6 p.m.

The grand
opening event, held in conjunction with the Destination Medical Center’s annual
meeting, is open to the public and features interactive displays, tenant
activity booths, music, food, games and self-guided tours. The
90,000-square-foot, four-story bioscience building is located at 201-299 4th
Street SW in the heart of downtown Rochester
.

Keith Stewart, M.B., Ch. B.

“By putting some of the world’s top medical researchers and
state-of-the-art laboratories under one roof, we now have an extraordinary
opportunity to accelerate discoveries of life-saving therapies and test
development in individualized medicine for patients with complex diseases,
including cancers,” says Keith
Stewart, M.B., Ch.B.
, Carlson and Nelson Endowed Director of Mayo Clinic
Center for Individualized Medicine.

Dr. Stewart
says the Advanced Diagnostic Laboratory will initially support 14 projects in
areas of disruptive technology, such as multi-omics, artificial intelligence
and digital pathology, bringing together current and new testing platforms with
multidisciplinary staff.

“The
collaboration represents a new era in transforming human health through
individualized medicine,” says Dr. Stewart. “Researchers will be encouraged to
innovate with a goal of accelerating the development and launch of new products
and services.”

In addition,
the Advanced Diagnostic Laboratory will collaborate with companies, both inside
and outside of One Discovery Square, to increase laboratory testing
capabilities at Mayo Clinic and to provide alternate revenue sources through
business partnerships.

One Discovery Square will also be home to two other Mayo Clinic departments: Biomedical Technology and Advanced Manufacturing of Regenerative Products. The building is part of a planned 16-block sub-district designed to be a hub for science and research.

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