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Last Updated: 07/23/15

Biological Testing Branch (BTB)


The Biological Testing Branch (BTB) of the Developmental Therapeutics Program (DTP), Division of Cancer Treatment and Diagnosis (DCTD), National Cancer Institute (NCI) operates out of the National Cancer Institute at Frederick providing budgetary oversight and technical direction for an extensive contractual effort designed to discover chemotherapeutic agents for cancer. Specifically, BTB’s mission is five-fold:

  • To develop and maintain a repository of Patient-Derived Models (PDMs) comprised of patient-derived xenografts (PDXs) and in vitro patient-derived cell cultures (PDCs), including mixed cell populations, clonal cell lines, and fibroblast cell lines;
  • To maintain a repository of experimental animal and human tumor cell lines for use in research performed by the Program and other qualified investigators;
  • To plan, direct and implement a contract-supported program to screen compounds for indications of in vivo preclinical efficacy including single agent and combination therapies;
  • To provide in vivo resources for preclinical pharmacologic and pharmacodynamic studies in support of drug development;
  • To develop new screening models.

BTB Contact Information

Biological Testing Branch
P.O. Box B, Bldg 1043/11
Frederick, MD 21702
Telephone: 301-846-5608
Fax: 301-846-6183

About the Branch Chief

Dr. Melinda Hollingshead has served as Chief of the Biological Testing Branch at NCI since 2005. The Biological Testing Branch (BTB) establishes patient derived xenograft (PDX) models, isolates cell lines from PDX models and conducts preclinical anti-cancer drug evaluations in relevant rodent models. Additionally, the BTB manages the distribution of cell lines and tumor samples from the DCTD Repository. More…