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Swedish Neuroscience Institute and Institute for Systems Biology in Seattle Form Alliance to Learn More about Brain Diseases
Date:9/30/2008

s of disease. Diseases such as Glioblastoma (the most common and most aggressive type of primary brain tumor) are so deadly because by the time symptoms present in a patient, the disease has usually progressed to the point where a cure is not possible. In addition, researchers hope that understanding how biological networks of genes and proteins interact in brain cancer will reveal new and better targets for drug development and treatment of the disease.

One of the partnership's first research collaborations has been the creation of a brain tumor tissue bank and associated genomic database derived from samples removed during surgery. Dr. Foltz believes the tumor bank and database provide researchers in Seattle and beyond the critical resources they need to further their research into slowing or stopping the growth of malignant brain tumors. "One thing that's made learning about these tumors difficult is that there are few patients at any one center and the tumors progress so rapidly without treatment. With the tissue bank and associated genomic database, we are establishing the foundation for one of the largest brain tumor research projects in the country," said Dr. Foltz. "It's a project with a mission to help not only patients in the future, but also those currently affected and whose tumors are now being so carefully studied."

The Institute for Systems Biology, founded in 2000, integrates such sciences as biology, chemistry, physics, computation, mathematics and medicine. "Systems biology is the science of discovering, modeling, understanding and ultimately engineering at the molecular level the dynamic relationships between the biological molecules that define living organisms," said Dr. Hood. "System-based approaches to diseases such as Glioblastoma afford powerful new opportunities for bringing this disease under control."

"This new partnership between the SNI and ISB represents the future of medicine," says Dr. Foltz. "As a physician whos
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SOURCE Swedish Neuroscience Institute
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