Cole Foundation Funding
Researchers need human leukemia/lymphoma cells for their research. Mouse models work well for leukemia/lymphoma in mice, but experiments with human cells are critical to assure relevance to the disease in humans. The Quebec Leukemia Cell Bank (QLCB) at l’Hôpital Maisonneuve-Rosemont is a provincially funded (Cancer Research Network-FRSQ), peer-reviewed bank for adult leukemia cells which currently supports researchers across the entire province. The QLCB has been in existence since 2001 and groups together haematologists, researchers and clinical scientists from four Quebec universities (Université Laval, McGill, Sherbrooke, Montreal) and a number of Quebec research centers (Lady Davis Institute, Institut de Recherches Cliniques de Montréal (IRCM), Institut de Recherche en Immunologie et Cancérologie (IRIC)). The QLCB is actually the only leukemic cell bank available to all researchers in Quebec and Canada.
There are many different types of leukemias and lymphomas. In order to cover this wide variation of leukemia and lymphoma cells, two things need to happen:
- The Quebec Leukemia Cell Bank at l’Hôpital Maisonneuve-Rosemont needs to expand its operation to collect and analyze specific pediatric and young adult leukemia and lymphoma cells; and
- The CHU-Ste-Justine needs to develop a bank for the remaining pediatric leukemia cell types as well as establish a bank for cord blood cells which would provide researchers with a valuable resource to improve cord blood therapy.
Both institutions are working together closely to ensure the best standards for this process and will have operational partners from the other major hospitals in Montreal (i.e., Montreal Children’s and the Royal Victoria Hospitals). Once established, these cell banks and their resources would be available to the entire Quebec scientific community.
The Cole Foundation has committed $572,000 over 4 years to create a pediatric leukemia cell bank at Saint-Justine University Hospital research Centre. In addition the Foundation has committed to contribute $637,000 over the same 4 years to allow the current Quebec Leukemia Cell Bank at Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital to expand its operation and preserve adolescent leukemia cells that will be available to all researchers in Quebec.