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Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation Focuses on Genetics

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The Muskogee Phoenix reports that the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation is ramping up investments into a new human genetics investigational program.  It will broaden their investigation into genetic mechanisms in various diseases, ranging from lupus and MS to cancer and heart disease well as obesity.  Patrick Gaffney, MD, will lead the new program.

Who is the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation?

Based in Oklahoma City, OK, they are an independent, nonprofit, biomedical research institute. Established in 1946, they are dedicated to understanding and developing more effective treatments for human disease.  Their scientists include a member of the National Academy of Sciences, hold more than 700 U.S. and international patents and have spun off 11 biotech companies.  Discoveries there led to Xigris, the first FDA-approved drug for the treatment of severe sepsis, and Ceprotin, a therapy for people suffering from a rare life-threatening blood disorder known as protein C deficiency.   Research there has identified the enzyme believed to be responsible for Alzheimer’s disease and laid the groundwork for OncoVue, a breast cancer risk assessment test.

Core Facilities include:

  • A 7-tesla MRI, which uses a 10,000-pound magnet to generate a magnetic field that is 140,000 times stronger than the earth’s and allows researchers to study the cells and organs of genetically engineered living mice and rats at microscopic levels without harming the animals;
  • BIACoreto measure affinity and binding kinetics of macromolecular interactions;
  • DNA Sequencing, with the daily capacity to run 90 sequences;
  • Flow Cytometry, with three instruments: the FACScan and FACSCalibur cytometers, capable of three and four color fluorescence analyses, and the MoFlo cytometer capable of high throughput cell sorting.;
  • Imaging, to assist researchers with imaging needs ranging from basic light and electron microscopy to digital image processing and analysis;
  • In Situ Hybridization, including tissue sectioning, slide mounting, and hybridization histochemistry;
  • Mouse Genome Manipulation Facility, providing microinjection services of DNA into zygotes for the generation of transgenic mice, and of ES cells into blastocysts for the generation of knockout mice;
  • Molecular Biology Resource Facility, for protein and peptide sequencing and mass spectrometry analysis; and
  • Signal Transduction Core, to assist research involving intracellular Ca2+ measurements and protein-protein interactions.

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