Healthcare Industry News: gastrointestinal stromal tumor
News Release - October 28, 2009
MolecularMD Establishes New Operations Facility to Support Growth in Personalized Cancer Medicine BusinessPORTLAND, OR - (HSMN NewsFeed) - MolecularMD Corp announced today that it has moved their core operations to a expanded dedicated facility with capacity and functionality to support the expansion of its cancer molecular diagnostics business.
With a mission to improve cancer survival, MolecularMD partners with cancer research institutes and pharmaceutical companies to develop diagnostic tests that will predict and monitor effectiveness of novel targeted cancer treatments.
MolecularMD launched their Portland operations in late 2005 as a spin-off of Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) with early seed funding and management support from BioCatalyst International (www.biocatalystintl.com). Scientific Founders Brian J. Druker, M.D., a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator, Director of the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute, and JELD-WEN Chair of Leukemia Research at OHSU, and Michael C. Heinrich, M.D., Professor of Medicine, Division of Hematology and Medical Oncology, have contributed significantly during their careers to the development of targeted cancer therapies specifically with respect to CML (chronic myelogenous leukemia) and GIST (gastrointestinal stromal tumor). MolecularMD continues to collaborate closely with OHSU and other leading clinical cancer research centers around the world.
MolecularMD's success is emblematic of the growing research strength of OHSU, which was highlighted earlier in September when Dr. Druker was honored with the Lasker-DeBakey Award for Clinical Medical Research, one of the most distinguished awards in biomedical research and often referred to as "America's Nobel."
MolecularMD currently employs 22 scientists, technicians, and business professionals within their Portland operations team and plans to aggressively expand their Research and Development group to drive the introduction of new tests connected with a broad range of cancers and therapies.
In addition to expanding their Research and Development capability, the new site will allow MolecularMD to process a larger volume of patient samples received from clinical research treatment sites around the world and offer a full companion diagnostics capability with GMP manufacturing.
MolecularMD's success to date can be attributed to their core expertise in performing RNA and DNA-based diagnostic tests to support a number of large clinical trials sponsored by major pharmaceutical companies. Stephane Wong, M.B.A., Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer, was instrumental in integrating OHSU clinical leadership with company startup operations which quickly enabled MolecularMD to meet the pharmaceutical industry requirements.
In November of 2008, MolecularMD received a $3 million growth equity investment in from Ballast Point Ventures (www.ballastpointventures.com) which will be used to build MolecularMD's corporate infrastructure and to expand the company's assay portfolio.
Founded in 2005, MolecularMD specializes in the development and commercialization of pharmacogenomic tests employed to measure patient molecular response of novel targeted cancer therapies. The company has over 30 years of combined experience in cancer research and has developed sensitive and highly reliable molecular assays for leukemias, lymphomas and solid tumors.
1134 SW Custer Ave.
Portland, OR 97219
About Ballast Point Ventures
Ballast Point Ventures is a later stage venture capital fund established to provide expansion capital for rapidly growing, privately owned companies in diverse industries, with a particular emphasis on companies located in Florida, the Southeast and Texas. The BPV partners have more than 70 years of combined experience investing in and building high-growth companies in a number of industries, including healthcare, business services, communications, technology, financial services and consumer products. The fund seeks to make equity investments ranging in size from $3 million to $10 million.
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