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McGill University Purchases GenVault's Personal Archive System to Manage Rare Cancer Samples

CARLSBAD, Calif., Oct. 17 /PRNewswire/ -- GenVault announced today that the Henry C. Witelson Ocular Pathology Laboratory at the McGill University Health Centre has purchased a Personal Archive biosample management system. The laboratory is located in Montreal, Quebec.

GenVault technology will be a critical component of the Laboratory's research in determining the mechanisms underlying eye cancers such as uveal melanoma and retinoblastoma and for developing new approaches for treatment. These eye cancers are particularly devastating with a high percentage of patients developing metastatic cancers. The Personal Archive biosample management system will be utilized as the primary repository to securely store these rare and precious patient samples to facilitate research. It will also be used as a central bank to make these samples available to collaborators also dedicated to developing treatment for these devastating diseases. Specifically the system will be used to collect patient samples in Latin America and transport them back to the laboratory for analysis, replacing expensive dry ice shipments which leave samples vulnerable to degradation.

"We don't do research as an intellectual exercise. We do research because there is a patient at the end of the day. We believe the GenVault system will help us to improve the diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of patients with ocular diseases particularly ocular tumors by improving our ability to store clinical and experimental samples." said Dr. Miguel N. Burnier, Jr. MD, PhD, PI of Lab.

GenVault's Personal Archive is a laboratory sized storage module for room temperature sample management. The system can accommodate up to 403,200 sample aliquots or the equivalent of 10 freezers in the same physical space as a single freezer and requires 1/10th of the energy of a freezer. This is all possible by the incorporation of the GenPlate, a multiwell plate incorporating FTA(R) paper enabling DNA samples to be stably maintained in the dry-state for decades. An additional enabling feature of this system is GenConnect, GenVault's sample management software allowing users to track their biosamples from sample storage to DNA recovery, to store and mine annotations associated with their samples and to network and monitor the use of the archive.

"GenVault is excited to enable pioneering research in the area of eye cancer with the Henry C. Witelson Ocular Pathology Laboratory. Our biosample management systems are uniquely designed to securely preserve precious samples for decades and to be easily transported facilitating research and therapy development", said David Wellis, CEO of GenVault.

About GenVault

GenVault is the global leader in providing biosample workflow, transport and storage solutions for genomic medicine, discovery and identification. Today, GenVault is empowering over 150 pharmaceutical companies, medical centers, academic institutions and law enforcement agencies to more fully leverage the rapidly growing genomics industry. The company's dry-state platform enables the extraction, preservation, recovery and distribution of DNA at room temperature. Future solutions will encompass multiple storage platforms and biosample types, such as proteins and RNA. For more information visit


Kerri McWeeny,

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