Liquid Biopsy Center

The Liquid Biopsy Center (LBC) is an initiative made possible by the VUmc CCA Foundation and the Cancer Center Amsterdam. The main goal of the LBC is to collect and safely store several kinds of biofluids, such as blood and/or urine, from cancer patients. These stored biofluids represent a unique resource for cutting edge translational cancer research to fulfill the promise of personalized cancer care.

Nowadays, cancer is diagnosed through painful and invasive tissue biopsies of a suspected mass. Additional (repeat) tissue biopsies are sometimes necessary in the follow up, increasing the chance of complications. By means of the LBC-initiative, in 1-2 years researchers will be able to design and test novel non-invasive methods for detecting cancer in biofluids. These tests can be utilized for earlier cancer diagnosis, more accurate cancer prognosis and better treatment selection.  The overall aim of the Cancer Center Amsterdam liquid biopsy center is illustrated in this movie

As a researcher or physician you may wonder what the liquid biopsy center can do for you. The following paragraphs provide some insight in the structure of the LBC and what you can expect.

Structure of the Liquid Biopsy Center

In general, the LBC should be seen as a biobank initiative to facilitate (biomarker) cancer research. In collaboration with and spearheaded by urgent clinical needs, the various departments will set up biobanks for various types of cancer. These subtype biobanks are based on tumor type that together are part of the LBC-biobank. Apart from VUmc/AMC patients, the LBC aims to collect and store samples from investigator- and Pharma driven clinical trials that are treated at peripheral hospitals.

The LBC will, in close collaboration with the VUmc Biobank core facility, provide and finance the standardized processing and storage of blood/urine samples from cancer patients before, during and after treatment. Once these samples are collected, CCA researchers with a solid research proposal can request for bio specimens that have been collected by the LBC.

How can I initiate an LBC biobank?

Every clinical research department or multidisciplinary tumor group can propose a LBC–run-Biobank collection, containing patient samples for future cancer research.

What will the LBC finance?

The clinicians and researchers decide which patients will be included in the collection. The LBC has means to assign a initiation budget for costs involved with material sampling, sample transport, processing  and the storage of the samples at the Biobank VUmc. In addition the LBC can aid in  getting MEtc approval and design of biomarker studies. Moreover, the LBC houses experts in the fields of tumor-educated platelets, exosomes, miRNAs and circulating tumor DNA. 

How can I retrieve bio specimens for research?

To optimize the sample retrieval from the biobank for specific research questions, the LBC research committee will review submitted research proposals. The LBC research committee consists of stakeholders i.e. clinicians, researchers with expertise in the domain. The initiators of the LBC-subtype biobanks are always a member of this research committee.

LBC team:

  • Dr. Michiel Pegtel (Head)
  • Dr. Maarten Bijlsma (head of the LBC at the AMC)
  • Leah Prins (coordinator of the LBC at VUmc)
  • Mai Tran (coordinator LBC at AMC)
  • Ing. Adrie Kromhout (biobank-VUmc)
  • Eefje van Kessel (CCA LBC Manager)

LBC advisory board:

  • Prof. Geert Kazemier,
  • Prof. Henk Verheul,
  • Prof. Ruud Brakenhoff,
  • Prof. Tom Wurdinger.

Current LBC initiatives

  • Lung cancer: Idris Bahce
  • Colorectal Cancer: Jurriaan Tuynman
  • Neuro oncology: Myra van Linde
  • Head and Neck oncology: Jens Voortman
  • Hepatopancreaticobilliary cancer: Babs Zonderhuis

Contact

If you have any questions, please get in touch.

Leah Prins
De Boelelaan 1118
1081 HZ Amsterdam
l.prins1@vumc.nl