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Scotland's Univ. of Dundee Opens Cancer Center with Personalized Medicine Focus

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – The University of Dundee in Scotland has opened a £3.2 million ($5.1 million) research center focused on personalized cancer medicine.

The Pat McPherson Centre for Pharmacogenomics & Pharmacogenetics will examine factors that determine why some individuals respond differently to drugs and treatments than others, the university said in a statement. To that end, according to the university, the center has developed a genetic test to determine the reaction of breast cancer patients to treatment.

The center is part of the university's Biomedical Research Institute, situated at Ninewells Hospital. The center was funded by the Ninewells Cancer Campaign, an organization founded by McPherson and co-developed by him and Jacqui Wood, the campaign's chair.

Professor Roland Wolf, director of the Biomedical Research Institute, told Scottish newspaper The Courier that the center has 20 people working there now, a number he hopes will expand to 50 over the next year to 18 months, depending on research income.

The institute now has 22 research groups, 10 professors, 170 staff and has an annual research spend of between £5 million and £6 million, Wolf told the newspaper.

The new center is named for a Dundee businessman and philanthropist who raised millions of pounds toward cancer research at Ninewells Hospital and the university before his death in March 2008. The university previously recognized McPherson by creating the Pat McPherson Chair of Cancer Biology.

The center was officially opened on Monday, in a ceremony led by Lord Naren Patel, chancellor of the University of Dundee.

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