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Facilities and Resources

Our research efforts are enhanced by the state-of-the-art Research Core Facilities and outstanding resources at UMass Chan Medical School.

Research Core Facilities 

The UMASS Research Core Facilities are shared resources available to all internal investigators for a fee-for-service charge. The facilities offer a wide range of services to the research community including cutting edge technologies, high-end instrumentation and technical support for basic, translational and clinical research. Some of the cancer-relevant cores include:

  • The UMCCTS Biospecimen, Tissue and Tumor Bank is an open access biorepository aimed toward the improvement of research, and serves as a scientific resource for the biomedical research communityIts mission is to advance clinical and translational studies using patient-derived specimens with the goal of better preventing and treating human disease. The Biorepository provides investigators throughout the institution as well external academic and commercial interests the ability to obtain and study human tissue specimens while maintaining patient confidentiality. The Biorepository and Tissue Bank houses both a collection of fixed, paraffin embedded tissue and samples which were collected fresh and frozen/processed immediately following surgery. When possible, surrounding healthy tissue samples are also processed and stored. Along with the storage and processing of samples, the biorepository serves as a dynamic collection and distribution service. Researchers are able to request fresh tissue and have specific study needs be met.
  • The Humanized Mouse Cell Transplantation and Assessment Core provides “humanized” mice that enable clinically relevant in vivo studies of human cells, tissues, and immune system without putting patients at risk. Humanized mice are immunodeficient mice engrafted with functional human cells and tissues and importantly address the scientific gap between human and mouse biology. The Core also provides expert in vivo functional analysis of transplanted human islets and stem cell-derived b-cells in immunodeficient mice that are highly valuable to the mouse research community.
  • The Small Molecule Screening Facility assists researchers in developing and performing high-throughput screening assays. The provide access to diverse chemical libraries, as well as state-of-the-art instruments including robotic compound transfer, liquid-handling equipment, imagers and plate readers. 
  • The Viral Vector Core uses cutting-edge technologies to create and produce  a variety of high-quality viral vectors, and provides consultation on gene transfer vector selection, design and application.
  • The Mutagenesis Core Facility provides UMMS research groups with access to the latest technologies available for introducing targeting genome alterations in human cells and various model organisms. The core will work closely with the Transgenic Animal Modeling Core to facilitate production of new rodent models.
  • The Deep Sequencing Core Facility offers high-throughput sequencing and library-building services. The facility operates several types of Illumina next-gen sequencers, and is closely integrated with the PacBio Core Enterprise and the Molecular Biology Core Labs.
  • The Mass Spectrometry Facility offers state-of-the-art platforms for proteomics, metabolomics and mass spectrometry imaging. Resources include support for study design, sample preparation, data acquisition, informatics, interpretation and publication assistance.
  • The Flow Cytometry Core Facility houses five cell sorters and seven analyzers as well as an Amnis FlowSight imaging cytometer and a Fluidigm C1. The Core has BSL-2+and BSL-3 sorting available. Professional and courteous staff are available to answer technical questions and provide assistance in setting up flow cytometry experiments, cell sorting, acquiring and analyzing data as well as training or self-use of select sorters, analyzers and software.
  • The Sanderson Center for Optical Experimentation (SCOPE) offers the tools and expertise required to perform a wide variety of quantitative microscopy techniques including super resolution imaging, multi-photon intravital and live tissue imaging, confocal microscopy and high-speed time-lapse imaging. The SCOPE offers a combination of commercial and custom-built microscopes, allowing users to address an extensive array of biological questions.
  • The Quantitative Methods Core (QMC) is the service arm of the Department of Population and Quantitative Health Sciences. QMC was founded to provide UMass Chan Medical School investigators with clinical research support in biostatistics, experimental design, and data management.

Click here to view the full list of Research Core Facilities at UMass Chan Medical School.

Additional Resources 

  • MassBiologics is dedicated to the development of novel biologics for the treatment of diseases of public health importance. MassBiologics scientists have the capabilities to move an investigational product from initial discovery, through process development and manufacturing and into early phase clinical trials. The Research teams at MassBiologics are focused on identifying new antibody targets for clinical development through in-house basic research as well as active collaborations with both academic and industry investigators.
  • The RNA Therapeutics Institute interweaves nucleic acid scientists with clinicians dedicated to finding new cures with the goal of enabling the rapid application of new biological discoveries to solutions for unmet challenges in human health.
  • The Horae Gene Therapy Center utilizes state of the art technologies to either edit mutated genes that produce disease-causing proteins or introduce a healthy copy of a gene if the mutation results in a non-functional protein.
  • The UMass Center for Clinical and Translational Science (UMCCTS) advances clinical and translational research through education and training, pilot funding programs, resources, and services. The CCTS also provides support of clinical investigation, including regulatory, budgeting, and data management services, as well as collaborations with other recipient institutions of Clinical and Translational Science Awards.
  • The UMCCTS Informatics Core is a multi-disciplinary effort of UMCCTS, the Division of Health Informatics and Implementation Science, and Bioinformatics. They develop and disseminate tools, provide data and analytic approaches to accelerate research, develop effective learning healthcare models, enable cost-effective care, and train the next generation workforce. Through their Community Engagement and Research Section, the UMCCTS also helps connect UMass academic researchers with community organizations who are knowledgeable and potentially interested in research.
  • The Office of Clinical Research (OCR) works with investigators and their study team members to promote and support clinical research at UMass Chan Medical School. OCR is responsible for clinical research education & training, budget development, contract negotiation, and a variety of other services intended to support the management and conduct of clinical research. The OCR’s Clinical Research Center (CRC) is dedicated to efficient, reliable and high-quality study support for UMass clinical investigators. For a reasonable cost, investigators can utilize a variety of services including accessible and comfortable space for participants, exam rooms for study visits, prep area for processing and shipping central lab specimens, and more
  • The UMass Center for Clinical Trials and Research in Surgery (CCRT) is designed to serve the needs of faculty and industry by providing the infrastructure necessary for the efficient conduct of clinical research and studies at UMMHC sites. The CCRT supports any type of research activity that is deemed suitable including in-house prospective studies, national trials and industry sponsored studies. Any faculty within the UMass Department of Surgery or other departments may access the expertise of the CCRT by arrangement.
  • Clinical trial design and statistical analyses are further supported by the Department of Population Health & Quantitative Sciences.
  • The Quality Assurance Review Center (QARC) provides imaging and radiation therapy quality assurance in support of cancer clinical trials to improve the standards of care in the management of cancers by improving the quality of clinical trials medicine.