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Center for Immunotherapeutic Research

Background

A partnership between the Abilene community and Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC) has resulted in the expansion of the Texas Tech School of Pharmacy (SOP) to Abilene.  As part of this expansion, the SOP will establish a Center for Immunotherapeutic Research in Abilene, TX to conduct translational and clinical research.  The Center will be staffed by faculty investigators having diverse skills and technologies but similar interests to discover and develop immunodiagnostics and immunotherapeutics for the treatment of human disease, including cancer.   The Center will be a model for collaboration between different departments within the SOP, TTUHSC and with outside institutions motivated to promote translational and clinical research. 

Mission

The mission of the Center for Immunotherapeutic Research is to improve the healthcare of people through the development and implementation of novel immune-based approaches and methods to detect and treat human diseases.

Vision

To grow translational and clinical research in immunotherapeutics at the School of Pharmacy through the establishment of a team of multidisciplinary and interdepartmental investigators working in a highly collaborative and technology-driven environment. 

Center Features

   The Center will strongly encourage research and development of new immunological approaches for prevention, detection and treatment of human diseases, including cancer. The Center will be based primarily in Abilene and staffed initially with faculty from both departments of the School of Pharmacy.  Research technologies at the Center will include but not limited to: 1) gene expression and protein engineering technologies, 2) hybridoma generation for monoclonal antibodies, 3) pre-clinical research for evaluation of experimental therapeutics (clinical pharmacology), 4) conjugation sciences,  5) microscopy and flow-cytometry, and 6) a Human Immunology Core  (HIC) to provide high-thru-put analysis of blood and tissue specimens and to provide support for immune monitoring of patients participating in clinical trials focused on cancer treatment and immune interventions.  The HIC will establish collaboration with clinical investigators interested in the development of methodologies and monitoring devices.  Center members will be encouraged to pursue commercialization of their research discoveries and inventions. Center members will collaborate with faculty and staff at the School of Pharmacy in Amarillo, Lubbock and Dallas and with clinical and basic science departments across the nation. The Center laboratory will provide pre-clinical support and testing of immunopharmaceuticals and will be GLP compliant. The Center will interface with biotech companies in Abilene and across the nation.

Members

Jon A. Weidanz, M.P.H., Ph.D (Biomedical Sciences Dept.)

Magdalena Karbowniczek, M.D., Ph.D. (Biomed Dept)

Maciej Markiewski, M.D., Ph.D. (Biomed Dept)

Ninh (Irene) La-Beck, Pharm.D. (Pharmacy Practice Dept)

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