The CFAR-AAIMS Core operates not only in the context of the Global Oncology program at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, but also at the new UCI/Fred Hutch Cancer Centre facility in Kampala, Uganda. The Core uses nearly 9,000 square feet of Biorepository and Laboratory space, including dedicated space for molecular diagnostics, histopathology, immunology, and clinical chemistry / hematology.
The Biorepository offers specimen processing (standard plasma, serum, and buffy coat separation, PBMC isolation by Ficoll separation, granulocyte isolation, solid tissue formalin fixing, snap-freezing of tissues and cells, and cryopreservation capabilities) and storage in a variety of conditions: -20 Scientific Freezers, -80 Ultra Low Scientific Freezers, Liquid Nitrogen Storage Tanks, and controlled room temperature storage. Alarm systems and local laboratory staff monitor all of our storage equipment continuously. The Biorepository staff are also able to assist with shipping of samples.
The Molecular Diagnostic Laboratory currently offers high-throughput DNA and RNA extraction, HHV8 Real Time Quantitative PCR and EBV Real Time Quantitative PCR. Additional commercial assays are available by request (e.g. gene expression, SNP Genotyping, and MiRNA Analysis) operated within a TaqMan-based PCR System (Life Technologies 7900, and 7500FAST).
The CFAR-AAIMS Core offers a weekly journal club, biweekly research in progress meeting, monthly clinical conference, quarterly seminar, and annual symposium in HIV-associated cancers to facilitate research in HIV Associated Malignancies. The Core operations in Uganda can offer assistance with recruitment and enrollment of patients with HIV-associated cancers into clinical trials, facilitating histopathologic diagnosis and confirmation of cancer cases, and help with the development and refinement of tools and data instruments to incorporate malignancy research into planned or ongoing HIV research studies.
Capacity building continues for operations of the Histopathology and Immunology Laboratories in Kampala and Uganda. We will provide updates on the development of activities for these labs as the Core’s operations expand.