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ASU embarks on next phase of an effort to rapidly assess radiation dose
Date:10/6/2011

TEMPE, Ariz.--Arizona State University has announced today it is entering the next phase of a multi-million, multi-institutional research project to develop technologies that would rapidly measure an individual's level of exposure to radiation in the event of a radiological or nuclear incident.

The project will enter a $5 million contract option as part of a potential $35.44 million project funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) to extend feasibility testing for the development of a prototype that will measure gene expression in individuals exposed to abnormal levels of radiation.

Currently, no rapid, FDA cleared, high-throughput system exists to measure the radiation dose of individuals within a large population.

"As Japan's tsunami and resulting nuclear crisis has demonstrated, there is an urgent societal need to rapidly assess an at risk population's exposure to radiation," said Lee Cheatham, PhD, deputy director of the Biodesign Institute and lead investigator of the project. "Our ultimate goal is to develop a diagnostic system that would ensure that medical responders have the information necessary to provide appropriate medical treatment and ensure human health and safety."

ASU will continue to oversee the research program management, coordination and integration necessary for effective development of the technology, which will develop a high-throughput system for radiation biodosimetry that is capable of processing a high volume of blood samples per day for gene expression analysis on an automated liquid handling and imaging platform consistent with FDA guidelines.

Developing the system requires utilizing a biomarker signature set based on gene expression markers. This set of markers will provide a distinct indicator for the level of absorbed radiation. Along with Biodesign Institute biomarker research expert Dr. Joshua LaBaer
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Contact: Joe Caspermeyer
joseph.caspermeyer@asu.edu
480-727-0369
Arizona State University
Source:Eurekalert

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